Caterpillar Marine said it has shipped the first five marine gas engines from its Lafayette, Ind., plant, which will power the world's first liquefied natural gas barge at the Port of Hamburg in Germany.
The engines were purchased by Becker Marine Systems, which is developing hybrid-LNG propulsion and energy-supply systems for barges. The Becker LNG hybrid barge will be used as a fueling platform to provide clean shore power to cold-ironing cruise ships and serve as a backup power source for the local Hamburg electric grid.
The barges will help cruise lines meet new European Union directives for lowering sulfur dioxide emissions in the waters of the North and Baltic seas, a more stringent form that goes into effect in 2015.
The LNG will be used to produce electricity to power quiet electric engines and to provide power to vessels at berth. Burning LNG significantly reduces emissions of sulfur dioxide and other compounds.
Caterpillar Marine is headquartered in Hamburg.
Read more about the prospects of LNG as a lower-cost, cleaner marine fuel in the January American Shipper
magazine feature, "Transitioning from diesel