New vessel is is one of the first liquefied natural gas-powered combination container and roll-on/roll-off ships in the world.
Crowley Maritime’s newest Commitment Class vessel, the El Coquí, was to set sail from the Talleyrand Port area Friday afternoon on its maiden voyage to Puerto Rico.
The El Coquí, named after a frog native to Puerto Rico, is one of the first liquefied natural gas-powered combination container and roll-on/roll-off ships in the world.
It was designed for service between the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
The ship is equipped to carry containers, ranging from 20-foot standard to 53-by-8.5 foot wide high-capacity units. It also has space for up to 300 refrigerated containers and can fit up to 400 cars, trucks and other vehicles.
The El Coquí is 720 feet long, 105.6 feet in breadth and has a depth of nearly 60 feet. Its maximum speed of 22 knots reduces the travel time to Puerto Rico from more than five days to 2½ days.
Crowley CEO Tom Crowley said Thursday the vessel is the future of container ship technology, as the liquefied natural gas is more efficient and provides cost savings.
“We’re speeding up the delivery of cargo making it more reliable and creating a much more stable supply chain,” he said.
Eagle LNG Partners recently opened a new LNG plant in Maxville. Across from where the El Coquí docks at JaxPort, Eagle LNG has another 500,000-gallon fueling station.
Crowley said it is the largest LNG refueling facility in the world.
In addition to cargo, the El Coquí will transport LNG in smaller tanks for Puerto Rico customers.
Crowley said the ship has three LNG tanks and will only need to refuel after every other trip.
Crowley also is anticipating the delivery of El Coquí’s sister ship, the Taíno, this fall from VT Halter Marine which builds the vessels in Pascagoula, Mississippi.