Liquified natural Gas (LNG) for Germany

Liq­ue­fied nat­ur­al gas (LNG) is nat­ur­al gas that has been cooled to a liq­uid state. It can be trans­port­ed to Ger­many by ship from pro­duc­tion facil­i­ties all over the world.

There are many argu­ments that sup­port the real­iza­tion of an LNG ter­mi­nal in Ger­many and espe­cial­ly in Wilhelmshaven.

As Ger­many is phas­ing out the use of nuclear ener­gy and coal pow­er, the country’s elec­tric­i­ty gen­er­a­tion capac­i­ty is set to halve with­in the fore­see­able future. Liq­ue­fied nat­ur­al gas can cov­er a large part of the demand and ensure an afford­able ener­gy sup­ply. In addi­tion, nat­ur­al gas is cur­rent­ly the most envi­ron­men­tal­ly friend­ly of the fos­sil fuels and there­fore makes an impor­tant con­tri­bu­tion to reduc­ing green­house gas emissions.

LNG ter­mi­nals can be built either on land or as a float­ing unit. A float­ing ter­mi­nal – known as a Float­ing Stor­age and Regasi­fi­ca­tion Unit (FSRU) – as planned for Wil­helmshaven, can be real­ized most eco­nom­i­cal­ly and quickly.

Why LNG?

LNG helps to diver­si­fy gas sources for the Euro­pean mar­kets, there­by strength­en­ing the secu­ri­ty of the gas sup­ply in Ger­many and Europe.

As a key ele­ment in the ener­gy tran­si­tion, gas will con­tin­ue to play an impor­tant role in our ener­gy mix in the future: both in pow­er gen­er­a­tion as well as in the indus­try, in the heat­ing mar­ket and in the trans­port sector.

As nat­ur­al gas pro­duc­tion in Europe con­tin­ues to decline sig­nif­i­cant­ly, the demand for import­ed nat­ur­al gas will increase sig­nif­i­cant­ly in the com­ing decades. LNG will cov­er a sub­stan­tial part of this addi­tion­al import demand.

Addi­tion­al sup­ply sources will also serve to strength­en price com­pe­ti­tion in the gas mar­kets, mak­ing this type of project in the inter­est of end customers.

Why Wilhemshaven?

LNG terminal Wilhelmshaven at a glance

Project details

  • Loca­tion: The Jade Bay, the only deep water port in Germany
  • Capac­i­ty: Nom­i­nal out­put of up to 10 bcm of nat­ur­al gas per year, stor­age capac­i­ty of 263,000 m³ of LNG
  • Onshore pipeline expan­sion: only 30 km to be built in main­ly agri­cul­tur­al setting

Strategic importance of the project

  • The devel­op­ment of an infra­struc­ture for liq­ue­fied nat­ur­al gas by estab­lish­ing a ter­mi­nal in Wil­helmshaven will con­nect Ger­many much bet­ter to the glob­al gas mar­kets than before. This will strength­en com­pe­ti­tion between glob­al gas sources.
  • The coali­tion agree­ment of the Ger­man fed­er­al gov­ern­ment also pro­vides for the estab­lish­ment of an LNG infra­struc­ture in Germany.
  • An FSRU will pro­vide com­pet­i­tive access to liq­uid gas mar­kets in north-west Europe.

Pipeline network and infrastructure

  • Wil­helmshaven is the loca­tion of Germany’s only deep water port. The infra­struc­ture of the port is already per­fect­ly suit­ed to this type of project and it can be reached by LNG tankers of any size with­out tidal restric­tions. The loca­tion is close to Germany’s exist­ing pipeline and gas stor­age infrastructure.
  • The exist­ing infra­struc­ture will speed up the project development.

FSRU and pipeline construction

  • FSRU provider will be MOL (Mit­sui O.S.K. Lines).
  • The tech­ni­cal project devel­op­ment of the planned pipeline con­nec­tion will be car­ried out by expe­ri­enced employ­ees of Uniper Tech­nolo­gies GmbH with the sup­port of exter­nal consultants.


The Wil­helmshaven loca­tion is the best solu­tion for an LNG ter­mi­nal in Germany.

The LNG tankers can berth in accor­dance with inter­na­tion­al stan­dards. Fur­ther­more, Wil­helmshaven is Germany’s only deep water port. LNG tankers of all sizes can reach the facil­i­ty inde­pen­dent­ly of tides. In addi­tion, the ide­al mar­itime loca­tion allows LNG tankers to moor and dock with­out hin­der­ing traf­fic to oth­er major ports.

There is an urban devel­op­ment agree­ment with the neigh­bor­ing munic­i­pal­i­ty of Wanger­land that enables indus­try and tourisms to coexist.

The required pipeline con­nec­tion to the near­by Netra nat­ur­al gas pipeline will main­ly pass through agri­cul­tur­al land.

The pre-con­di­tions for a lat­er land­side expan­sion of the ter­mi­nal for up to 40 bcm/a are already available.

The local econ­o­my will be strength­ened by the con­struc­tion of the ter­mi­nal and the accom­pa­ny­ing indus­try. The estab­lish­ment of an FSRU will allow Wil­helmshaven and the region of Fries­land to fos­ter its role as an ener­gy hub in North­west­ern Europe. 

Why an FSRU?

What is an FSRU?
  • FSRU is an abbre­vi­a­tion of Float­ing Stor­age and Regasi­fi­ca­tion Unit.
  • An FSRU is a float­ing stor­age facil­i­ty in which LNG is con­vert­ed back into gas. After­wards the gas is fed into the grid and deliv­ered to the customer.
  • An FSRU allows Ger­many to be con­nect­ed to the glob­al LNG mar­ket at sig­nif­i­cant­ly low­er costs com­pared to the con­struc­tion of an onshore terminal.
  • The FSRU tech­nol­o­gy is com­mon­ly used in the LNG indus­try. World­wide, more than 30 FSRUs are already in use and oth­ers are under construction.

The invest­ment costs for an FSRU are sig­nif­i­cant­ly low­er than those for the alter­na­tive con­cept of an onshore ter­mi­nal. In addi­tion, the time for imple­men­ta­tion is much shorter.

The design of the FSRU in Wil­helmshaven offers the pos­si­bil­i­ty to use LNG as an envi­ron­men­tal­ly friend­ly fuel for shipping. 

Technical details of an FSRU, Including Capacity

General information

  • The FSRU will ful­fill cor­re­spond­ing inter­na­tion­al stan­dards and reg­u­la­tions (IMO, MARPOL, SIGTTO, etc.).
  • The FSRU is designed to oper­ate for a peri­od of 20 years, with­out hav­ing to leave the port.

FSRU Wilhelmshaven

  • Length/width/depth: 345 m / 55 m / 12 m
  • LNG tank vol­ume: 263,000 m³
  • Nat­ur­al gas out­put: 1.1 mil­lion m³/h
  • Max. nat­ur­al gas out­put: 1.4 mil­lion m³/hr


FSRU – more details

  • The FSRU will be per­ma­nent­ly moored to the jetty.
  • Flex­i­ble hoses con­nect the FSRU to LNG tankers. The expect­ed load­ing rate will be 10,000 m³ of LNG per hour.
  • The dura­tion to the dis­charge oper­a­tion is sim­i­lar to the one of a onshore LNG terminal.
  • The regasi­fi­ca­tion will take place onboard. Sea water is used to heat the LNG.
  • The FSRU will be able to load LNG onto bunker barges via the reg­u­lar man­i­folds as well as an addi­tion­al set of man­i­folds designed for the small­est barges aim­ing e.g. at inland waterways.

Partners and interested parties

In order to ensure the rapid imple­men­ta­tion of the FSRU project at the Wil­helmshaven site, Uniper is work­ing close­ly with the rel­e­vant author­i­ties. We are also hold­ing dis­cus­sions with inter­est­ed mar­ket play­ers about long-term book­ing of capac­i­ties in the terminal.

In Mit­sui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), Uniper already has an expe­ri­enced and reli­able part­ner at its side.


Why is Uniper committed to the Wilhelmshaven FSRU Project?

Uniper is one of the largest gas com­pa­nies in Europe and has the tech­ni­cal and com­mer­cial exper­tise to imple­ment the project togeth­er with its strong part­ners. Uniper has over 15 years of expe­ri­ence in the LNG business.

Uniper is well-posi­tioned in Europe along the entire gas val­ue chain.

 Uniper’s LNG port­fo­lio is con­stant­ly expand­ing and includes trans­porta­tion capac­i­ties and inter­na­tion­al LNG pro­cure­ment projects. In addi­tion, the LNG trad­ing busi­ness has grown strong­ly in recent years.

More­over, through its sub­sidiary Liqvis, Uniper is also active in the area of LNG mobil­i­ty in the heavy trans­port sector.

Why MOL as a partner?

MOL is a Japan­ese trans­port com­pa­ny that was found­ed in 1964.

Through­out its long­stand­ing his­to­ry, MOL has grown into one of the world’s largest full-line marine trans­port groups.

MOL is one of the lead­ing com­pa­nies in the LNG ship­ping industry.

In 2017, MOL built the world’s largest FSRU: the FSRU Chal­lenger (Turkey) – owned and oper­at­ed by MOL. It rep­re­sents the basis of the design for the FSRU Wilhelmshaven.

Expression of Interest procedure

As of Tues­day, 22 Sep­tem­ber 2020, all mar­ket par­tic­i­pants are invit­ed to express their bind­ing inter­est in the capac­i­ty of the planned LNG ter­mi­nal. The expres­sion of inter­est pro­ce­dure will last until Fri­day, 30 Octo­ber, 2020.


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