Aframax refers to a class of oil tanker of medium size, larger than Panamax and smaller than Suezmax.

Aframax tankers are in the range of 80-120 DWT. The typical drafts vary by vessel but are usually in the region of 14.5-15.5 m. They are used for crude and refined products shipment. If moving product, they are often called LR2.

Aframax crude tankers are typically used in short- to medium-distance routes and to serve ports that cannot handle the larger and lower-cost-per-barrel Suezmax or VLCC tankers.

The name Aframax comes from an oil tanker rate system introduced by Shell called the Average Freight Rate Assessment.

Author: Tim Fitzgibbon, Refining Industry Sr. Expert

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