1. Home
  2. / Industry
  3. / How do they work? Container ships are true marvels of naval engineering, essential for global cargo transport
reading time 2 min read Comments 0 comments

How do they work? Container ships are true marvels of naval engineering, essential for global cargo transport

Written by Rafaela Fabris
Published 10/06/2024 às 13:34
How do they work? Container ships are true marvels of naval engineering, essential for global cargo transport
Container ships were first introduced in 1956 with the maiden voyage of the Ideal X, transforming the shipping industry. Image: Port Technology/Disclosure

Container ships were first introduced in 1956 with the maiden voyage of the Ideal X, transforming the shipping industry. These ships are constructed of steel and vary in size. Smaller ones, called feeder ships, carry cargo between smaller ports, while larger ones can carry more than 20.000 containers.

Building giant container ships takes months and involves several steps. The superstructure includes cabins, engine room and control bridge. Powerful engines, like MSC Tessa's low-speed diesel, are installed to power these huge vessels. These engines are efficient and durable, ideal for long distances.

Engine assembly begins with the construction of the propellant block. Pistons are installed and connected to the crankshaft, which is crucial for generating power. Fuel, lubrication, turbocharging and air supply systems ensure the engine runs smoothly. After assembly, the engine is rigorously tested to meet safety and performance standards before being installed on container ships.

With growing concern about climate change, the shipping industry is adopting more sustainable practices

The use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel in container ships is one such solution. LNG emits fewer greenhouse gases and generates less noise pollution, making it more suitable for environmentally sensitive areas.

CMA CGM, one of the largest container shipping companies, is leading the shift to LNG-powered ships. In 2017, the company launched the CMA CGM Jacques Saadé, the first LNG-powered ultra-large container ship, with a capacity of more than 23.000 containers.

Keeping container ships operating efficiently is crucial

Regular maintenance includes replacing worn parts and upgrading equipment. For example, propellers can be changed without having to take the ship to a dry dock, using special equipment to remove and install new units while the ship is in the water.

Container ships are fundamental to global transportation, and the engineering behind them is impressive. With technological advances and more sustainable practices, these giants of the sea are becoming more efficient and environmentally friendly, ensuring they can continue to play their crucial role in world trade.

Register
Notify
guest
0 Comments
Feedbacks
View all comments
Rafaela Fabris

Talks about innovation, renewable energy, oil and gas. Updates daily on opportunities in the Brazilian job market.

Share across apps
0
We would love your opinion on this subject, comment!x
()
x