Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group company based in Yokohama, has held a christening and launch ceremony for the ‘Fugaku Maru’, a ro-ro ship under construction for Fujitrans Corporation, at the Enoura Plant of MHI’s Shimonoseki Shipyard and Machinery Works.
Delivery is scheduled for April 2024 following completion of outfitting work and sea trials. The new vessel will replace the current Fugaku Maru, originally constructed at MHI’s Nagasaki Works, and which has been in continuous service since 1997.
The new Fugaku Maru is 165m in overall length, 27.6m in breadth and is about 13,000gt. It can simultaneously transport up to 50 trailer chassis and 1,511 passenger cars. Fuel efficiency has been significantly improved in the new vessel with the adoption of a vertical stem in the bow to reduce propulsion resistance, complemented by high-efficiency propellers and use of low-friction paint. The onboard power generator can be shut down through connection of an onshore power receiving system installed in the engine room and power distribution equipment scheduled for installation in ports. In the future, this advance will enable zero emissions while the ship is in port.
The new Fugaku Maru features a wider beam than its predecessor, and structural innovations have enabled the elimination of pillars on the trailer loading deck. Together with these improvements, the ship will provide greater turning space for trailers, resulting in enhanced loading efficiency.
MHI says that a modal shift is underway toward marine transport in a quest to reduce CO2 emissions from land transportation modes, offset shortages of long-distance truck drivers, and align with workstyle reforms. In response, Mitsubishi Shipbuilding will work with its business partners to solve diverse issues through construction of ferries and ro-ro ships that will contribute to stable navigation while also providing outstanding energy and environmental performance.