03 March 2013
The first of KNUD E. HANSEN and Stena RoRo’s new ships for the reefer market will be ready in two years. The ships do away with containers and thus represent an open challenge to the reefer carriers.
A competitor to the reefer containers will be born in the coming years. And Finn Wollesen Peters is confident: The reefer market is on the brink of a revolution.
In a few years, the CEO of ship engineers KNUD E. HANSEN, together with the former head of Lauritzen’s reefer business, Birger Lindberg Skov (Reefer Intel) and Stena RoRo, will be able to present a completely new type of ship, which will challenge the current dated reefer ships, container ships, where cargo is loaded in refrigerated reefer containers.
“This is huge, it could revolutionize the entire reefer market. We want to return to the old method, to a reefer ship principle that’s not based on containers, and we’ve spent the last few years developing a concept for this,” Finn Wollesen Petersen tells ShippingWatch.
The companies have developed a new refrigeration system inspired by an older system called grating. Back in the days when bananas were transported on EURO pallets, this system blew air underneath the pallets which would then seep up through the bananas, thus maintaining a constant temperature of 13 degrees celcius, keeping them from ripening too fast.
The new ship type is designed for slow steaming and unit costs can be reduced by 40 percent compared to other reefer ships, explains Finn Wollesen Petersen. Compared to existing reefers, estimate also indicate that capacity on the new design will be 45 percent bigger, and that loading/unloading time can be handled in just 12 hours, versus the current 36-48 hours.