First dual-fuel (marine diesel oil/liquefied natural gas) vessel built in a French shipyard, the water injection dredger L’Ostrea is currently conducting sea trials.
According to the shipbuilder, in a few days, L’Ostrea will transit towards Bordeaux where the last dredging tests will be performed in the Gironde estuary.
Following a European call for tenders in 2017, the EIG Dragages-Ports awarded the contract for building a dual fuel water injection dredger to SOCARENAM shipyard, based in Boulogne sur Mer, France.
This new dredger will be operated by Bordeaux port authority, which uses two dredgers to maintain the navigation channel and quaysides in the Gironde estuary.
L’Ostrea will work on the quaysides, and on the navigation channel in addition to the trailing suction hopper dredger Anita Conti.
She will replace La Maqueline, a grab hopper dredger dating from 1984, that was recently sold.
L’Ostrea is an innovative vessel in many ways. Dragages-Ports fleet was until now exclusively composed of trailing suction hopper dredgers and grab hopper dredgers, which are the most common equipment in the world for maintenance dredging.
With the dual-fuel engines, the dredger will be able to burn Liquefied Natural Gas or Marine Diesel Oil. Compared to diesel, natural gas emits 25 % less carbon dioxide (CO2), 80 % less nitrogen oxides (NOx), and almost no sulphur dioxide or particulate matter.
By using this type of fuel, combined with electric dual fuel propulsion, which is more energy efficient, and water injection dredging, Bordeaux port authority will be able to maintain the port accesses and equipment in a more environmentally-friendly way.