MacGregor, part of Cargotec, is upgrading and optimizing the container stowage systems on board seven Hapag-Lloyd C-class container vessels.
The Hamburg-based carrier’s first contract in December 2017 was originally for four vessels of 9,300 TEU, but it extended the contract for three more ships from the same series in January 2018.
MacGregor's work will be carried out under its Cargo Boost service, which is designed to increase the earning potential of existing container vessels through improving cargo carrying efficiency.
Magnus Sjöberg, Senior Vice President, Cargo Handling, MacGregor, said: “Prior to the contracts, Hapag-Lloyd and MacGregor worked closely to identify the optimum solution for each cargo system and its implementation process.
“Every MacGregor Cargo Boost upgrade is unique to ensure that it matches a shipowner's specific needs.
“However, all are designed to maximize a vessel's efficiency, deliver a better return on investment for the owner and to reduce emissions per transported cargo unit.”
A Cargo Boost is part of MacGregor's PlusPartner concept, which is an approach to ship design that considers all parts of the cargo handling system as a whole.
MacGregor’s upgrades will enable higher stack weights for 40ft containers — a sector it has identified as holding some revenue potential.
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Hapag-Lloyd is currently the world's fifth largest container carrier with a total capacity of about 1.6 million TEU.
In addition to hardware upgrades, MacGregor will update any relevant documentation, coordinate loading computer revisions, project management and full supervision during the modification work on board.
Upgrade work on the first vessels will start at the end of February, and the last ship upgrade will take place in May 2018.
Lutz-Michael Dyck, Director Technical Fleet Management at Hapag-Lloyd, said: “We have worked very closely with MacGregor on numerous newbuilding projects and upgrades, which have been carried out during scheduled dry dockings.
“In the case of these C-class vessels, it was not possible to take them out of service for any length of time; therefore all work had to be done under tight schedules and completed within only a couple of working days.
“This called for very careful and detailed pre-planning, which was complemented with full-time supervision on board the vessels during the upgrade work.
“We already have three optimized ships back in service and are very satisfied with MacGregor's performance.”