The Italian ocean vessel classification society RINA recently concluded a major study which concluded that floating storage terminals for liquefied natural gas are feasible and economically viable.
The study was conducted as part of the AZURE project, a European Commission program aimed at demonstrating the technical and economic feasibility of a full floating LNG chain. The project probed the concepts of floating production, storage, and offloading vessels and floating storage and regasification units (FSRU) for LNG.
RINA completed the preliminary safety analysis for the FSRU and the sloshing, offloading, and related hydrodynamic aspects. RINA also was in charge of the precertification of the FSRU design.
The AZURE project is being managed by Bouygues Offshore. Partners in the project, besides RINA, include Fincatieri; Chantiers de l'Atlantique; Bureau Veritas; M.W. Kellogg Ltd.; Gaz Transport et Technigaz; FMC Europe; and IRCN, the Insitute de Recherches de la Construction Navale.