Heavy fuel oil will remain the main fuel for deep sea shipping in year 2030 indicates new research from Lloyd’s Register and University College London’s Energy Institute. In a complex study involving many inter-related factors, ‘Global Marine Fuel Trends 2030’ (GMFT 2030) limits itself to the container ship, bulk carrier/general cargo and tanker (crude & chemical/products) sectors which represent about 70% of the shipping industry’s fuel demand.
VLCC: File photo
Marine fuels considered: Ranged from liquid fuels used today (HFO, MDO/MGO) to their bio-alternatives (bio-diesel, straight vegetable oil) and from LNG and biogas to methanol and hydrogen (derived both from methane or wood biomass) were included in the study.Engine technologiesIncluded were 2 or 4-stroke diesels, diesel-electric, gas engines and fuel cell technology. Since the uptake of certain fuels is influenced by them, a wide range of energy efficiency technologies and abatement solu... [More]
The S3 switch (a marketing acronym for ‘Smart Sulphur Switch) is a prototype developed by Denmark’s Insatech in cooperation with O.W. Bunkers, to blend and adjust two fuels (HFO and MDO) to a desired sulphur content enabling monitoring and control of marine diesel engine exhaust gas emissions without fitting expensive scrubber units. The S3 is presently on trial aboard ships belonging to some of this major bunker supplier’s customers in Northern European waters, and commercial production is planned for later this year.
S3 Fuel Switch Skid: Image credit Insatech
Fuel Switching and BlendingOn most modern ships two service tanks are provided: one service tank contains the higher sulphur fuel oil and the other may contain low sulphur fuel to ensure MARPOL Annex VI emission regulations are met. This arrangement will involve a fuel changeover at some point during the ship’s engine operation, normally achieved by means of a three-way valve, and it is at this poin... [More]
Wärtsilä Corporation, Trade & Technical Press release, December 2010 [More]
Marine Diesel engines have a remarkable ability to work with a variety of fuels, ranging from Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) to Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) as well as a range of distillates of refined crude oil in between. Not surprisingly the ship-owner's fuel of choice for large two-stroke Diesel engines over the years has been HFO, the low-price by-product of oil refinery output. Onboard fuel oil treatment being taken care of by purifiers/calorifiers prior to fuel injection, and more recently by advanced computer driven fuel cleaning systems.Unfortunately HFO is high in nitrogen, sulfur and ash, greatly increasing the NOx and SOx content in marine Diesel engine exhaust gas emissions, a fact which has led pollution control agencies worldwide – IMO, EU and other, localised, Emission Control Areas (ECA) – to set progressively exacting limits in revised MARPOL VI.A bleak future for ship-owners who were not already planning for year 2015 (when sulfur limits in the ECA's will be rest... [More]