On 13 November 2023 MSC Cruises confirmed the order of two liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered vessels with French ship builder Chantiers de l’Atlantique. This sees the two World Class options confirmed as firm orders with an option for a fifth ship.
The two new ordered vessels – currently referred to as World Class 3 and 4 – will be delivered in 2026 and 2027. MSC World Europa and MSC World America are already the most energy efficient ships in the industry
They perform significantly better than the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) requirement, and the new ships will be an evolution of the state-of-the-art World Class prototype with innovative solutions to maximise the energy efficiency, with extensive use of heat recovery and other technological solutions, which will see the vessels having an even further reduced carbon footprint.
In addition, the new ships will be ready for a variety of alternative fuels including bio and synthetic methane and green methanol. The ships will also be fitted with the next generation dual fuel internal combustion engines with reduced methane slip.
The new World Class vessels will feature shore power plug-in connectivity to reduce carbon emissions in port, the most advanced wastewater treatment systems designed in line with the IMO, new advances in waste management, and a comprehensive range of onboard energy efficient equipment to optimise engine use and hotel energy needs to further reduce emissions.
MSC Cruises’ first LNG ship, MSC World Europa, was launched in November 2022 and MSC World America will be delivered in spring 2025, designed for the North American cruise market.
The vessel, currently under construction at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire in France, last month reached a milestone when LNG tanks were installed.
MSC Euribia, a Meraviglia class ship constructed by the French shipbuilder, is also powered by LNG and entered service in June 2023.
MSC Cruises and Chantiers de l’Atlantique are actively involved in several projects to develop and make these technologies viable in partnership with regulators, academia, and industry.
MSC Cruises is the world’s third largest cruise brand as well as the leader in Europe, South America, the Middle East and Southern Africa with more market share in addition to deployed capacity than any other player.
It is also claimed to be the fastest growing global cruise brand with a strong presence in the Caribbean, North America and the Far East markets. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, MSC Cruises one of the two brands that sit within the Cruise Division of MSC Group, the leading privately held Swiss-based shipping and logistics conglomerate with over 300 years of maritime heritage.
MSC Cruises has a modern fleet of 22 vessels combined with a sizeable future global investment portfolio of new vessels. The fleet is projected to grow to 23 cruise ships by 2025.
Photo = MSC World Europa in Saint-Nazaire, France in June 2022.