HERCULES Project Continues

By Keith Henderson at December 14, 2010 06:38
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The I.P. HERCULES Integrated Project (High Efficiency R&D on Combustion with Ultra Low Emissions for Ships) is a large scale cooperative project on marine engine R&D concerning sustainable and safe energy production from marine engines. It is supported by the European Commission and the Swiss Federal Government. Comprising a consortium of 43 partners led by the major engine maker groups MAN Diesel & Turbo and Wärtsilä, it includes component suppliers, equipment manufacturers, universities, research institutions and shipping companies.

The project was conceived in 2002 and a research program started up in 2004 covering the broad remit topics of higher efficiency, reduced emissions and increase reliability. As the project drew to a close in 2007, many benefits in the field of improved combustion efficiency and reduced emissions were achieved.

So successful was the project that it was decided to continue the research program now known as Hercules-A with a new four year Hercules-B program to run in the period 2008 to 2011. The original aims were retained however the new -B project was to focus on reducing fuel consumption and lowering CO2 emissions.

As Hercules-B is scheduled to finish in 2011 it has been decided to continue the research cooperation by commissioning a part three program to be known as Hercules-C. It is planned to run over a three year period 2012 to 2015 and has a budget of EUR19M provided by the European Commission. In addition to the main aims of combustion efficiency, including fuel injection and emission reductions, the wider shipping issues of fuel reduction optimization of ship energy management, and engine technologies supporting transport mission management are added.
In total, the three programs of Hercules A, B and C will span the years 2004 - 2015 for an estimated budget of EUR79M.

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