ABS and Vaholmen sign landmark LOI for the development of a VOC recovery vessel

Photo Caption: John McDonald, ABS Executive Vice President and COO, with Arve Andersson, Vaholmen Chief Executive Officer  Photo Caption: John McDonald, ABS Executive Vice President (left) and COO, with Arve Andersson, Vaholmen Chief Executive Officer (right)


ABS and Vaholmen VOC Recovery AS signed today a Letter of Intent (LOI) at the Nor-Shipping Exhibition in Oslo for the development of a pioneering volatile organic compounds (VOC) recovery vessel (the Vaholmen unit) to capture emissions released during the loading of crude oil cargoes. The vessel, which will be built to ABS Class, is being developed in close cooperation with Wärtsilä Gas Solutions and Ulstein Design Solutions.

The patented Vaholmen concept can be based on the newbuild vessel of Ulstein SX219 design or retrofit of a vessel suitable for the purpose, typically a large PSV.

Vapor from oil cargos releases millions of tons of CO2 equivalents – through the release of VOC – into the atmosphere. Between 60-80 percent of these emissions are generated during loading of crude oil cargoes. The Vaholmen unit will operate on dynamic positioning (DP2) close to the loading tanker for capturing and processing the VOC generated on the tanker through a hose connected to the tanker’s vapor return manifold.

The output from the process – the liquefied VOC (LVOC) – can be monetized through injection into a stream of relevant hydrocarbons such as crude oil, as feedstock for powerplants, refineries or other use, as well as providing fuel for electrical power production on the Vaholmen unit. Work is also ongoing within the industry to make use of the LVOC as an alternative green fuel for ships capable of running on LPG.

“The Vaholmen units will serve an important need in reducing emissions as the industry works to meet decarbonization and sustainability goals. This LOI is a key milestone on the road to delivering the first of these vessels which have significant potential to contribute to creating a more sustainable shipping industry,” said Egil Legland, ABS Manager, Norway Business Development.

Arve Andersson, CEO Vaholmen VOC Recovery, said: “Additionally, as pollution is resources gone astray, the combination of two proven technologies into a new and innovative patented concept allows capturing and utilization in a profitable way of values that otherwise are lost.”

About ABS
ABS, a leading global provider of classification and technical advisory services to the marine and offshore industries, is committed to setting standards for safety and excellence in design and construction. Focused on safe and practical application of advanced technologies and digital solutions, ABS works with industry and clients to develop accurate and cost-effective compliance, optimized performance and operational efficiency for marine and offshore assets.

About Wärtsilä Gas Solutions
Wärtsilä Gas Solutions is a market leader with innovative systems and lifecycle solutions for the gas value chain. Our main focus areas are the handling of gas in seaborne transport, VOC recovery, gas to grid/power, liquefaction and biogas solutions. We help our customers on their journey towards a sustainable future through a focus on lifecycle performance, innovation and digitalisation.

About Ulstein Design & Solutions
Norway-based Ulstein Design & Solutions AS is one of the companies in Ulstein Group, established 1917. The company offers a wide range of concept developments, ship designs and equipment packages, system integration, site assistance and services. Its expertise lies in the development of ship designs, planning of equipment packages and system integration for ship construction worldwide. Every step in the development and design process is improved and refined to cut costs and boost performance. The emphasis is on increasing efficiency, reliability and safety for demanding operations.

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