Biggest thing afloat.

We like to think of the US Navy’s aircraft carriers as the biggest, baddest warships around. And they are. But at 1092’ and about 95,000 tons, they’re not even close to being the biggest vessels around. And right now, in South Korea, the biggest vessel in the world is under construction.

Off the northwestern shores of Australia lies a field of natural gas deposits that are huge. But natural gas is difficult to transport from the fields to the end users. The only way to move it by sea is to liquefy it by chilling it to extremely low temperatures. And so Shell is building a plant to do so, while moored in the heart of the gas fields offshore.


At 488 meters (that’s 1601 feet in real measurements) and 600,000 tons, it dwarfs an aircraft carrier. It’s expected to serve on station for a quarter century.

Gas will be pumped aboard, liquefied, stored, and then transferred to LNG tankers for transport to buyers.

And here’s an earlier look at the construction of Prelude, including some of the living quarters, which, let’s just say they’re a little nicer than aboard a carrier.


8 thoughts on “Biggest thing afloat.”

  1. Given the Korean capability to build big floating things, I have to wonder what their cost would be to build aircraft carriers.

  2. Between the Islamic fanatics on one hand and environmental fanatics on the other, I hope they have some good security built into that thing, I have feeling they might need it if things keep going the way they are for the next 10 or 15 years…

    1. You know how some vessels use fire hoses to repel boarders? LPG is at -40 😉

    2. Firehoses of high pressure LPG for repelling boarders?

      Where’d I leave my Zippo again … ? 😀

  3. The MV JARHE VIKING was a quarter of a mile long, and it went places, being an Ultra Large Crude Carrier.

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