Sunday, May 8, 2011

No. 275: Growing business of storage tanks for ocean LNG plants (May 9, 2011)

In the aftermath of the accident of the nuclear power plant, demand for LNG storage tanks is expected to grow rapidly. IHI and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries will bolster up the production capacity of large LNG storage tanks to be used on the sea. IHI will build dedicated production equipment with an investment of about five billion yen to produce an aluminum tank with a capacity of 200,000 cubic meters per month. Special treatment will be given to the inside of the tank to prevent LNG from vaporizing in welter. Shale gas attracts a worldwide attention, and demand for offshore LNG development is expected to grow to activate demand for LNG storage tanks on the sea. Because a storage tank on the sea does not need a pipeline between the tank and the liquefaction facilities, it is possible to build a plant far away from the facilities on the land. Investment for an offshore LNG plants exceeds 300 billion yen, and three storage tans are needed for each plant, and sales of more than 10 billion yen are expected from each plants. Brazil’s state-owned oil company Petrobras will reportedly invite a tender internationally this summer for an offshore LNG plant scheduled for operation in 2014. In Indonesia, INPEX is planning to build an offshore LNG plant.

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