10 October 2017
Bureau Veritas has now published a new Rule (NR645) for the classification of Floating Storage and Regasification Units (FSRUs) in response to industry demand and following close engagement with FSRU stakeholders.
Demand for FSRUs is growing. They are a fast, cost effective route to meet growing demand for LNG as a clean and cost competitive energy source. The new BV rules enable the classification of all types of floating storage and regasification assets in a comprehensive and pragmatic manner by building on Bureau Veritas' extensive experience in the LNG sector.
The new rules set out technical requirements to address the technical and operational issues of FSRUs. These requirements span demand for units that may operate as a floating terminal for one or more decades to FSRUs that may be required for much shorter periods and whose operators may want the option of trading as an LNG carrier.
The rules address this range of needs while applying a unified approach to safety and design challenges and providing clarity in terms of classification requirements by offering two distinct class notations:
Liquefied Gas Carrier -FSRU notation
Based on rules for the classification of LNG carriers this enables gas trading in addition to floating storage and regasification terminal operations. The notation provides the possibility for exemptions from the traditional class survey regime - such as five year dry-docking survey requirements - when the vessel is in use as an FSRU.
For units dedicated to pure gas storage and regasification terminal operations and not intending to trade. This notation provides full optimization for site conditions and a class survey regime as applicable to permanent units with continuous operation requirements. No dry-docking would be required and some exemptions from IGC Code requirements compared to typical LNG carriers are allowed. For example, no bottom damage stability requirements would be necessary having addressed specific operational circumstances.
Jean-François Segretain, Marine Technical Director, Bureau Veritas, commenting on the new rules said: ”FSRUs are a special market with both ‘marine’ and ‘offshore’ approaches and requirements involved. So, FSRU projects raise a lot of questions from all stakeholders. These new rules take into account the specific technical, regulatory, operational and environmental requirements of FSRU stakeholders to provide a much higher level of confidence when making significant commercial decisions.”
With a growing demand across the gas supply chain, Bureau Veritas specialists are involved in a wide range of LNG projects world-wide, including a growing number of FSRUs, small-scale LNG projects, LNG as fuel projects (BV is the class leader in LNG fuelled newbuildings) and LNG carriers including the 15 Yamal ice-class ships.