Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s biggest shipbuilder, today announced the completion of the final performance test for a model ship of 190,000 DWT ice-breaking iron ore carriers at Institute for Ocean Technology in Canada.
When the actual 190,000 DWT iron ore carrier is built, the iron ore carrier will be the world’s largest ice-breaking commercial ship. It will be able to navigate 1.7 m thick ice-covered waters with a speed of 6 knots. The ship will measure 310 m in length and 51 m in width.
An ice-breaking commercial ship is a special-purpose ship built to navigate through ice-covered waters without the help of an icebreaker. The Hyundai Heavy ice-breaking iron ore carrier will be able to carry twice as much cargo as any existing ice-breaking commercial ship. Moreover, the ship can also move two times faster with 5% increased fuel efficiency. The ship will have a dual propulsion system equipped with two ring type propellers to increase mobility, a strengthened hull, and special shape to expedite ice-clearing. The demand for ice-breaking commercial ships is expected to increase as exploration of natural resources like natural gas, oil, and iron ore in the Polar regions is becoming easier. Travel distance can also be shortened by up to 40% between Asia and Europe when Arctic sailing routes are available. Hyundai Heavy has also been developing a special welding technology for polar LNG carrier tanks and LNG FPSO since June 2010. This is part of the Company’s long term strategy for the expected increase in demand for LNG carriers and LNG FPSOs to be used in the polar region as interest in natural gas development in that area has been growing.