NYK Line and JMU agree to ‘actual sea conditions’ propulsion guarantee contract

NYK Line and Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) have agreed to introduce a new shipbuilding contract that guarantees propulsion performance under sea conditions that include wind and waves.

While shipbuilding contracts typically guarantee a ship speed by confirming the relationship between ship speed and horsepower in calm sea conditions without waves, such conditions, says NYK Line, are ‘rare’ during commercial voyages, and that ‘stormy weather conditions are often encountered’.

‘[I]t is generally the obligation of shipping companies to identify and procure ships that have good propulsion performance in actual weather conditions,’ NYK Line noted.

Citing the recent improvement of satellite communications at sea and the progress of IoT technology, NYK Line says it has now become possible to efficiently collect a variety of useful data. Accordingly, NYK Line and JMU have agreed to the introduction of an ‘actual sea condition’ in the shipbuilding contract.

As per the terms of the new contract, NYK Line says after a ship goes into service, the company will collect necessary data for a certain period of time, verify the data, and confirm the degree of achievement of the guarantee.

‘This performance guarantee will confirm the relationship between ship speed and horsepower under sea conditions that include wind and waves,’ NYK Line said.

NYK Line says it plans to further develop this guarantee for verification of propulsion performance for many ship types, which, it notes, ‘is difficult to do in sea trials at the time of construction’.

NYK Line said: ‘We will conduct discussions with our partner shipyards on the performance of vessels in the actual sea conditions and make further improvements. By providing customers with well-performing vessels, we will also contribute to improving environmental consciousness throughout the supply chain.’

Rhys Berry

Rhys Berry