Environmental Flagship

Challenges to Energy Conversion (LNG Fueled Vessel, LNG Bunkering Business, Zero Emission Fuels)

Vessels currently use heavy oil to run ship engines. However, changing from heavy oil to liquefied natural gas (LNG) would result in emissions reductions of about 30% for CO2, about 80% for NOx, and 100% for SOx. In October 2011, the NYK Group established its Fuel Project Team (Current Name: No.3 Green Business Team of Green Business Group) to research the viability of a fuel changeover and the development of related technology. In August 2015, the first domestic LNG-fueled tugboat was completed. And in September 2016, two dual-fuel LNG pure car and truck carriers (PCTCs), a world's first, were completed.
A large-scale LNG-fueled PCTC "Sakura Leader" was completed in October 2020, then the second large-scale LNG-fueled PCTC was also completed in March 2022 and the world's first large-scale LNG-fueled Coal Carrier will be completed in 2023. Furthermore, our first LNG-fueled Capesize Bulk Carrier will be also completed in 2024.

These vessels have a dual fuel engine that can use either LNG or heavy oil as fuel. When operating on LNG fuel, it is possible to reduce emissions of gases that could harm the environment. We look forward to accumulating further knowledge through the construction and operation of these LNG-fueled vessels, and will look to expand to larger vessels and other types of ships.

Provided by Central LNG Marine Fuel Japan Corporation

Moreover, in Japan, we have launched LNG Bunkering Business using Japan's first LNG bunkering vessel (LBV) through a partnership with Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd., JERA Co. Inc. and Toyota Tsusho Corporation. In September 2020, Japan's first LBV named "Kaguya" was put into practical operation, and in October 2020, Kaguya conducted the first Japanese Ship-to-Ship LNG bunkering operation to Sakura Leader. Additionally, with Kyushu Electric Power Co., Inc., ITOCHU ENEX CO., LTD., and SAIBU GAS CO., LTD., we have performed considerations with the goal of beginning the operation of the LNG Bunkering Business in Japan's Kyushu and Setouchi regions in the spring of 2024, then announced the conclusion of a shipbuilding contract for one LBV between our joint venture company and Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd..
The construction of the LBV is planned to be completed in March 2024, and the vessel will become the first LNG bunkering vessel operated in West Japan.
We have been a leader in all these firsts and will continue to develop the LNG-fuel market in terms of LNG-fuel supply and sale, promote the conversion of marine fuel to LNG, and contribute to reducing shipping's environmental burden.

In addition, we have also begun efforts to commercialize Zero Emission Fuels such as Ammonia and Hydrogen, which will contribute to the decarbonization of not only the maritime industry but also the energy industry and society in the world.
(Please refer to the related links in below for overview of each initiatives.)

LNG-fueled PCTC "Sakura Leader"
Image of LNG Bunkering
More Information:

【LNG-fueled Capesize Bulk Carrier】

【LNG-fueled Coal Carrier】

【LNG-fueled PCTC】

【LNG Bunkering Business in Japan】

【LNG Bunkering Business in Europe】

【Challenges to Achieve Zero Emission】




【CCUS, CO2 Transportation】



【Methanol-fueled Chemical Tanker】

【LPG Dual-Fuel Very Large LPG/NH3 Carriers】

【LPG Dual-Fuel VLGC】

【Activities in External Organization】

Japan's First LNG-fueled Vessel "Sakigake"

On August 31 at the Oppama factory of Keihin Dock Co. Ltd.,NYK received delivery of Japan's first LNG-fueled tugboat. The vessel has been named "Sakigake" and is expected to confirm the viability of LNG (liquefied natural gas) as a marine fuel and to help cultivate a new business field in the area of LNG as an environment-friendly marine fuel.

Sakigake was chartered from NYK to the Wing Maritime Service Corporation and is currently being operated mainly at the ports of Yokohama and Kawasaki. The new tug is equipped with dual-fuel engines that can use either of LNG or diesel oil, depending on conditions. Compared with conventional tugboats that use marine diesel oil, Sakigake emits about 30 percent less carbon dioxide, 80 percent less nitrogen oxide, and absolutely no sulfur oxide when using LNG as fuel. Three Patents are pending for the LNG receiving system and LNG carburetion system used on board.

LNG for this vessel is supplied from a tanker truck at a pier in Yokohama, and much effort has been made together with the supplier, Tokyo Gas Co. Ltd., to establish a method for the LNG to be safely and efficiently supplied in compliance with relevant laws and regulations. In fact, in July 2015 a trial fueling of the vessel from a tanker truck was successfully carried out for the first time in Japan.

This vessel has received a number of awards, such as the Technological Development Award at the 17th annual Logistics Environment Awards sponsored by the Japan Federation of Freight Industries (JFFI) and the Technology Special Award at the 2015 Ship of the Year Awards sponsored by the Japan Society of Naval Architects and Ocean Engineers (JASNAOE).

In addition, in May 2019, we participated in Kitakyushu's first truck-to-ship LNG fuel supply demonstration experiment in the Kyushu and Setouchi districts, and in January 2020, Yokohama's 100th LNG fuel supply in total was achieved.

Truck to Ship