Maritime consultancy Kasi Group is to launch an LNG bunkering simulator in Sabah, Malaysia, marking a first for LNG training in the country.
The simulator has been designed to provide port staff and marine services employees with a range of skills necessary to identify risk and safely manage LNG bunkering operations in the country.
“In our business, we can’t stand still or rest on our laurels. We have to keep pushing no matter how crazy it is. It’s always about riding the next wave because technology is always changing,” Benjamin Nair, executive director of Kasi, said.
Kasi has announced plans to roll-out the technology worldwide following successful testing at its site in Kota Kinabalu, in the north of the Sabah region of Malaysian Borneo.
“The (simulator) developer will be flying in to Sabah and we will do the global release of the LNG bunkering simulator here – believe it or not – here in Kota Kinabalu,” Nair added.
Established by Nair in 1979, Kasi has grown into a specialist simulator firm following development of a simulator programme for bridge operations in the shipping industry in the early 2000s. Since then the firm has conducted extensive research in core markets, including Denmark, Russia and Sweden, to identify the major challenges for emergent industries such as LNG fuelling.
“Having the bridge simulator meant we could project the image on screen... it was something quite revolutionary. People couldn’t believe we had this facility in KK [but now] people actually like to come to KK to do simulation (training) because they see our city as a place for relaxation as well,” he said.
Peninsular Malaysia has a longer history of LNG development thanks to more developed infrastructure and proximity to Singapore which acts as a trading hub. Authorities at the port of Johor recently signed a deal with Petronas LNG (PLL) to deliver marine services and improve vessel tariffs for LNG handling services at PLL’s Regasification Terminal Pengerang (RGTP).
Earlier this year, Thai firm PTT Exploration and Production announced its largest discovery to date, estimated at roughly 2 trillion cubic feet, in offshore Malaysia. The giant gas reserve in the offshore Sarawak region was reported to be the seventh largest global discovery of the year.
"We expect Lang Lebah to have a high chance of commercialisation as feedgas into the Malaysia LNG (MLNG) complex. The plant is in urgent need of new supply as existing sources have only met 85 percent of its requirements in 2018,” Huong Tra Ho, senior analyst at research analyst frim Wood Mackenzie, said.