Italian classification society, RINA, has concluded a major study that demonstrates that floating storage terminals for LNG are both feasible and economically viable. The EU-funded study carried out jointly with Fincantieri, shows that an offshore FSRU, (Floating Storage and Regasification Unit) for LNG offers advantages over conventional land-based LNG terminals in particular for environmentally sensitive or congested shore areas. The study was part of the AZURE project, partially financed by the EC under the THERMIE framework, aimed at demonstrating the technical and economic feasibility of a full floating LNG chain. The project investigated the concepts of FPSO, (Floating Production Storage and Offloading) and FSRU for LNG. RINA's role in the project has been to carry out the preliminary safety analysis for the FSRU and to deal with sloshing, offloading and related hydrodynamic aspects. RINA was also in charge of the pre-certification of the FSRU design.
"Co-operative R&D is an essential part of our strategic development plan. Our steadily growing portfolio of joint industrial R&D projects will allow us to be ready for new challenges in the maritime business. The LNG floating chain is a field where we expect significant business development in the future." said Mario Dogliani, head of RINA's R&D Section.