The future for tankers

The January issue of Fuel Oil News magazine looked at the evolution of tanker design and production. Here, we look ahead and consider the future of the tanker and how it may change to reflect the changing face of fuel.

Previous feedback strongly suggested that there haven’t been any significant changes for some time as Dave Rowlands, technical services director, Wincanton, confirms:

“There have been no ground-breaking changes for some time now, however there have been step changes embracing technology and product development which are slowly evolving the blueprint.”

“In terms of future changes for tankers, we expect it to be less about design and more about the products transported. As always, we look forward to working with our customers to achieve their specifications with prompt delivery time and continue to look ahead to more ‘normal’ times.”

Commenting on how last year impacted on methods of communication, Joby Clark, Cobo Tanker Services, told Fuel Oil News about success and growth amidst the challenges of last year:

“With no visits to the factory last year we had to rely on electronic communication to ensure the new tankers we built were completed to customers specification and also for the correct builds for the equipment fitted. Whilst this was a challenge, we proved it possible and had a very successful year bringing on more new rigid tanker customers and a good year for semi-trailer builds as well.

“The rigid tanker program was highly successful last year, and many new customers were brought on board with repeat orders being placed already for this year. Our customers in the home heating oil business also generally had a good year and this will probably be reflected in new truck orders for 2021, whilst we envisage that with less personal car travel the semi-trailer market will be a little quieter this year.

Implications of alternative fuels for vehicle certification

When reading submissions for Tanker of the Year, it was interesting to see several tankers not only built to transport alternative fuels but also fuelled by them.

Duncan Seaman, field sales engineer, Volvo Trucks comments:

“LNG, as a power source, has been recognised in ADR for some time. This, along with the Economic Commission for Europe of the United Nations (UN ECE) regulations, allow us as manufacturers to type approve and register these powertrain vehicles for the carriage of dangerous goods.

“The relevant UN ECE regulations that are required are:

Reg. 110 for the approval of: I. specific components and installation of motor vehicles using CNG and/or LNG.

Reg. 105 for the approval of vehicles intended for the carriage of dangerous goods with regard to their specific constructional features.

“Therefore, as a manufacturer with a current recognised conformity of production, we are permitted to build and issue certificates for these vehicle types.”