HHI Cuts Steel on Next World’s Largest Containership

cscl venus
The CSCL Star-class containership, CSCL Venus. With a maximum TEU capacity of 14,074, the eight Star-class ships are currently CSCL’s largest vessels. Image via Daniel Eckhart.

South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), the world’s largest shipbuilder, has cut steel on the first of five 19,000 TEU containerships for China Shipping Container Lines (Hong Kong) Co., Ltd, marking the official start of construction on the soon-to-be record breaking ships.

HHI says that CSCL upgraded the original order for five 18,400 TEU containerships to ones capable of delivering 600 more containers. At 19,000 TEU, the new ships will be the largest containerships ever built, with the capacity to carry 1,000 more containers than Maersk Line’s Triple-E’s.

The order for the five 18,400 TEU ships was first confirmed by HHI in May 2013 for $700 million.

The new ships will feature a 77,200 bhp electronically-controlled main engine and two EcoBallast seawater treatment systems. The main engine will maximize fuel efficiency, and reduce noise, vibrations, and carbon emissions by automatically controlling fuel consumption to suit sailing speed and sea conditions. The EcoBallast system can treat 3,000 m3 of seawater per hour by filtering and sterilizing bacteria and plankton bigger than 50 µm with ultraviolet rays

The first ship, measuring 400 meters in length, 58.6 meters in width and 30.5 meters in depth, is scheduled to be handed over by November this year. The remaining four containerships are slated to be delivered by the end of the first quarter 2015.

For comparison, Maersk Line’s Triple-E’s have a capacity of 18,000 TEU and measure 400 meters long (1,312 ft) by 59 meters wide. Maersk Line has a total of 20 Triple-E’s either already delivered, under construction, or on order at DSME in South Korea.

With this order, Hyundai Heavy says it has won orders for 102 ships out of the 372 ultra large containerships.