Maersk has ordered a total of twenty brand new Triple E container ships from Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd. and, when launched, they will be the largest ships in the world. With a capacity of 18000 TEU (twenty foot equivalent) containers on a ship 400 meters long and 59 meters wide these ships will take maximum advantage of economies of scale. It would take a train over 68 miles long to carry an equivalent load.
The ships are set to run the Asia-Europe trade route and will sail from Shanghai to Spain in 20 days. The ships will actually sail at a lower speed reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. The super long stroke engine also uses a heat recovery system for increased efficiency.
The ship is designed from day one to be recyclable and comes with a “Cradle to Cradle Passport” listing all materials used, where they can be found and how to properly disassemble them for recycling or disposal.
These ships are almost unbelievably huge but you can most likely expect even larger ships in the future. There is a website dedicated to the building of this ship and contains details and updates of its progress. Well worth a visit.