Revolutionizing LNG Transport: GAIL's Historic Ship-to-Ship Transfer

By Ritwik Ghosh,Kolkata India


GAIL, India’s premier gas firm, has achieved a groundbreaking milestone with the world’s first ship-to-ship liquefied natural gas (LNG) transfer. This strategic move aims to reduce shipping costs and minimize carbon emissions, showcasing GAIL’s commitment to innovation as a catalyst for business growth.

GAIL has secured a contract for 5.8 million tonnes per annum of LNG from the US, transported to India via LNG ships. Traditionally, this journey covers about 19,554 nautical miles, emitting approximately 15,600 tonnes of CO2 during the 54-day round trip from Sabine Pass in the US to India, passing through the Suez Canal and Gibraltar.

In a paradigm-shifting approach, GAIL executed a ship-to-ship (STS) transfer mid-way using the company-hired vessel Castillo De Santisteban and the chartered hired vessel Al Gharrafa of QatarGas. This marks the world’s first STS between a large conventional LNG vessel and a Q-Flex LNG Vessel, demonstrating GAIL’s commitment to pioneering solutions.

The optimized path resulting from this innovative contractual arrangement led to a remarkable reduction in CO2 emissions. By saving 8,736 nautical miles—equivalent to 7,000 tonnes of CO2 emission—the voyage duration for GAIL’s chartered vessel was shortened from 54 days to approximately 27 days, resulting in a total optimized gain exceeding $1 million.

This eco-friendly approach not only benefits GAIL but also creates a win-win situation for QatarGas, saving on fuel costs, canal charges, and generating additional revenue during the backhaul. The success of this concept holds transformative potential for the entire LNG shipping industry.

This strategic move, coupled with GAIL’s introduction of the first floating CNG station, earned the company the prestigious ‘Innovation Award – India and Midstream Project of the Year’ at the Asian Oil and Gas Awards. GAIL’s CNG station on a floating boat in the Ganges in Varanasi represents another leap in environmental sustainability, refueling boats with eco-friendly CNG.

GAIL’s commitment to innovation extends beyond LNG transport, with the company implementing a CNG dispensing infrastructure, converting diesel engines to CNG, and significantly contributing to savings for boat owners operating on environment-friendly fuel.

All the information provided above is not written by Escape Title; it is sourced from various reputable outlets. Foundr Magazine India.

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