The class of ship pictured above is the current record holder for largest in operation, but not for long. Danish ship builder Moller-Maersk has announced that it will deliver 10 container ships capable of carrying 18,000 20-foot long shipping units between 2013 and 2015. The ships, called the Triple-E class, will be built in South Korea for the heft price of $1.9 billion. Once completed, these ships will be the largest on the ocean.
Once completed, the ships will not only be the largest afloat but surprisingly environmentally friendly. The AFP wire service quotes a statement from ship builder Moller-Maersk, saying:
The new container vessels, at 400 metres long, 59 metres wide and 73 metres tall, will be “the largest vessel of any type known to be in operation,” but emit half as much carbon dioxide as the industry average for Asia/Europe trade, the statement added.
Though impressive in its own right, these new ships will still be dwarfed by the now-defunct Batillus-class supertankers and the also-defunct 458m behemouth The Seawise Giant — which has the distinction of being the largest mobile man-made object.
That aside, Moller-Maersk should have no trouble holding on to the title of largest ships on the sea. The next largest class of tanker is also Moller-Maersk made. For those of you playing along at home, the 400m Triple-E boats are just 43m shorter than the Empire State Building is tall.