Is methanol the future of maritime fuels?

It’s not a secret anymore that the shipping industry today is facing some serious challenges with respect to meeting upcoming exhaust gas emissions regulations. The contribution from shipping to sulphur oxide (SOx) and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions today is considerable, thus the need for reductions. Three main alternatives – switching to low-sulphur fuels, installing exhaust after-treatment devices, e.g. scrubbers, or using natural gas – have been investigated to some extent, but very little information is available on methanol as a marine fuel.Methanol is a clean fuelMethanol does not contain sulphur. Emissions of particulate matter and NOx from methanol combustion in marine engines are expected to be lower than those resulting from the combustion of conventional fuels. Methanol is widely available, can be safely transported and distributed using existing infrastructure, and in 2012 it is currently much cheaper than marine distillate fuel based on energy content. I... [More]

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