Page 10: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (July 2001)

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L nvestment in Design manager drawn from GL's technical research domain, Pierre Sames, has been appointed to head up the operation.

The systematic collection and promo- tion of ideas will feed into the society's research and development (R&D) endeavors. GL has always taken a prag- matic line towards R&D, in looking towards projects that can deliver tangi- ble benefits in terms of services, tech- nology and products. One of the tasks of the innovation manager will be to better ensure that ideas are relevant to the soci- ety's more focused approach in expand- ing or establishing competence in select- ed areas.

Although the innovation management process was only set in train towards the end of last year, the society collected about 90 ideas in the 12 months to April this year, about 20 percent of which emanated from its field services. A total of eight proposals or concepts were sub- sequently investigated, resulting in the uptake of two as development projects since last October.

It is estimated that around a third of the ideas were rejected outright for being outside the bounds of GL's actual or intended areas of activity.

The ideas management framework accordingly addressed the perceived requirement for a systematic, internal approach to the collection of ideas for services and products, and to the task of identifying those, which ally with the society's strategic development objec- tives. The system that has been laid down opens up possibilities whereby the proposer of the idea might come to take an active role in the development process, if the project is authorized.

The very fact that a process has been implemented to give individuals a voice and a hearing over such matters is regarded as positive from a staff motiva- tion standpoint. It opens up the catch- ment for feedback, potentially stimu- lates more ideas, and helps provide a basis for a more creative organization, believes GL management. "With the new system, I have the possibility to catch ideas that might otherwise be lost," confirmed Mr. Sames. GL annu- ally spends an estimated $8.4 - $12.6 million on R&D, with the larger projects sponsored either by the European Com- mission or the Federal Ministry of Edu- cation and Research (BMBF).

LR Report: 75 New LNG Ships

Needed For The U.S.

Lloyd's Register (LR) said that between 27 and 75 new LNG ships will be needed to meet the demand for LNG over the next decade in the U.S. market alone. Results of an extensive study into the matter were released at released the LNG conference, "The role of LNG in North American and Caribbean gas supply in Washington D.C."

Many factors have been considered by

LR in its forecast of the LNG market, including consideration of replacement of aging existing ships, take-up of excess capacity at existing import termi- nals and a rash of new import terminal projects that are likely to succeed.

The U.S. market finds itself short of energy. Gas is the clean burning fuel-of- choice for the electricity-generating plants mooted for construction in the

U.S. over the next decade. LNG is being targeted to provide a large proportion of this demand. This dictates new import, gasification and distribution facilities within the U.S. To serve these facilities, ships to transport the LNG are a pre-req- uisite since the most suitable exploitable sources are remote from the U.S. main- land.

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