Ship launch in Saint-Nazaire: reliable insulation for liquefied natural gas (LNG) supertankers using Openair® Plasma

As resources become more and more scarce, natural gas deposits are increasingly tapped decentrally. The only way to transport this liquefied gas to refineries is supertankers. Gas cooled to -1630C in the tanks on LNG supertankers must be prevented from coming in contact with the steel walls of the tanker’s hull, which would then become brittle and shatter like glass.

To achieve 100% impermeability, the extremely tough impermeable sheeting used for insulation is pretreated with plasma and bonded with adhesive directly on site when the tank interiors are lined. This large-area surface pretreatment with Openair® plasma made it possible to launch these LNG supertankers.

STX France SA

Large-scale surface treatment

Openair® plasma technology has proven to be the only practical surface treatment for bonding insulating panels in the manufacture of three liquefied natural gas supertankers. An area of 12,000 m² per tanker had to be treated, and achieving 100% seal integrity of the insulation was an absolute necessity.

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