This is a neat concept until fully LNG powered ships are launched. When launched, fleetmate AIDAprima will be able to operate off of LNG while in port.

Under this concept being tested in Hamburg, all electricity needed onboard will be generated by a barge alongside that is generating power by burning LNG. This ingenious concept is to avoid having ships burn heavy fuel oil (bunkers) while in port.

Official presser:

Upon successful completion of the final technical tests, AIDAsol was provided during its lay time in Hamburg’s HafenCity for the first time with low-emission electricity from liquefied natural gas (LNG) via the LNG Hybrid Barge.

“With this pilot project for the energy supply of cruise ships using LNG while being berthed in ports, which is thus far unique worldwide, we have opened a new chapter for environmental protection in the port of Hamburg,” said AIDA President Michael Ungerer.

After successful test operation of individual board systems, AIDAsol is to be supplied with energy for the first time completely via the LNG Hybrid Barge with the next call of port in Hamburg (June 9, 2015).

The LNG Hybrid Barge functions as a floating power plant. In the gas processing plant, the cryogenic (-163°C), liquid gas is heated and then passed on to the generators, which produce electricity for the operation of the ship while in port. The power provided by a total of five gas motors on the LNG Hybrid Barge is 7.5 megawatts.

EDITORIAL NOTE: LNG is something I am quite familiar with from my day job, however my company is in no way, shape, or form involved with LNG bunkering.