Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) is going to adapt one of its Liquefied Natural Gas tugboats so that it will be able to run on ammonia.
Keihin Dock Co., part of the NYK Group, based in Yokohama, will be carrying out the modifications on the Sakigake, built in 2015.
The tug, which is currently operated by another NYK Group company, Shin-Nippon Kaiyosha Corporation, in Tokyo Bay, is expected to be ready to run on ammonia in 2024.
The initiative is part of a project launched in October 2021 by NYK and IHI Power System, which aims to reach CO2 emission reduction targets through developing ammonia-fueled engines.
In early July, the two companies were granted approval by Japanese class society Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK) to build a tugboat running on ammonia.
NYK said that there had been various design challenges in using ammonia as fuel, but the two companies had overcome them without having to modify the size of the conventional tugboat.
Translation by Giles Foster