VESSEL REVIEW | Fairchem Pathfinder – Second LNG-fuelled chemical tanker in series delivered to US operator

Fairchem Pathfinder (Photo: MOL Chemical Tankers)
Fairchem Pathfinder (Photo: MOL Chemical Tankers)

Japanese shipping company MOL Chemical Tankers, via its recently acquired US-based subsidiary Fairfield Chemical Carriers (FCC), has taken delivery of a new vessel fitted with dual-fuel engines that can also run on LNG in addition to marine diesel. Fairchem Pathfinder belongs to a series of four 26,000DWT vessels built by Fukuoka Shipbuilding to a design jointly developed with FCC's Japanese office.

Large capacity with reduced emissions

The newbuild has an LOA of 158.42 metres (519.75 feet), a beam of 27.4 metres (89.9 feet), a draught of 10 metres (30 feet), a depth of 10.19 metres (33.43 feet), and a gross tonnage of 17,490. A total chemical cargo capacity of 29,500 cubic metres (1.04 million cubic feet) is distributed among 26 stainless steel tanks.

Fairchem Pathfinder <em>(Photo: MOL Chemical Tankers)</em>
Fairchem Pathfinder (Photo: MOL Chemical Tankers)

Power is provided by an IHI-Niigata six-cylinder engine with a rated output of 5,730 kW (7,680 hp) driving a propeller. This arrangement delivers a speed of 11.8 knots. The LNG propulsion technology also helps reduce CO2 emissions by as much as 25 per cent compared to a similar-sized vessel operating on traditional marine fuels.

As with its earlier sister Fairchem Pioneer, which entered service in November 2023, the IMO 2/3-compliant Fairchem Pathfinder is classed by NK and is registered to the Marshall Islands. The vessel has begun operational sailings and even completed its first LNG bunkering when it received 1,390 cubic metres (49,100 cubic feet) of fuel via ship-to-ship transfer in Singapore.

Work is ongoing on Fairchem Prestige, the third ship in the series. Delivery of this vessel is scheduled for November of this year.

Fairchem Pathfinder
Type of vessel:Chemical tanker
Flag:Marshall Islands
Owner:MOL Chemical Tankers, Japan
Operator:Fairfield Chemical Carriers, USA
Builder:Fukuoka Shipbuilding, Japan
Length overall:158.42 metres (519.75 feet)
Beam:27.4 metres (89.9 feet)
Draught:10 metres (30 feet)
Depth:10.19 metres (33.43 feet)
Deadweight tonnage:26,000
Gross tonnage:17,490
Capacity:29,500 cubic metres (1.04 million cubic feet)
Main engine:IHI-Niigata, 5,730 kW (7,680 hp)
Maximum speed:11.8 knots
Type of fuel:LNG

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Baird Maritime / Work Boat World