Exhaust Gas Scrubbers

By Keith Henderson at August 16, 2010 08:29
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The expansion of Emission Control Areas (ECA) in North American and European waters leaves ship owners using HFO with little choice other than to use a more expensive low sulfur HFO, change to MDO completely or use a dual fuel arrangement. The latter not only necessitates installing additional tanks and fuel handling equipment but also requires careful change over procedures to be followed every single time to avoid potential engine problems that can be very severe. An area that a few operators are pioneering is the use of exhaust seawater scrubbers. Hamworthy Krystallon produce a Seawater Scrubber that is designed to operate on a 3.5 per cent S HFO 380 fuel while complying with the EU in-port and MARPOL Annex VI requirement of a 0.1 per cent sulfur fuel. Hamworthy Krystallon early orders from Italian owner have been followed this month by an order to equip four 45,000 dwt ro-ro new builds at Daewoo. Sembawang Shipyard (SSPL), Singapore are interested in a potential retrofit project for seawater scrubbers. Switching to low sulfur fuels will create supply problems according to he International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association
The expansion of Emission Control Areas (ECA) in North American and European waters leaves ship owners using HFO with little choice other than to use a more expensive low sulfur HFO, change to MDO completely or use a dual fuel arrangement. The latter not only necessitates installing additional tanks and fuel handling equipment but also requires careful change over procedures to be followed every single time to avoid potential engine problems that can be very severe.

An area of interest that a few operators are pioneering is the use of exhaust abatement technology in the form of seawater scrubbers. Hamworthy Krystallon produce a Seawater Scrubber that is designed to remove 99 per cent of SOx and 80 per cent of particulates when operated on a 3.5 per cent S HFO 380 fuel thus complying with the EU in-port and MARPOL Annex VI requirement of a 0.1 per cent sulfur fuel. It also reduces exhaust noise and typically fits around the funnel space being both lightweight and self supporting.

Trials have been running on the P&O Ferries Pride of Kent with a 1MW auxiliary gen set and with an 8 MW auxiliary gen set on board the Holland America Lines cruise ship. Hamworthy Krystallon early orders from Italian owner Ignazio & C have been followed this month by an order to equip four 45,000 dwt ro-ro new builds at Daewoo. It allows the ships to use high sulfur HFO in port yet be within the EU directive requiring sulfur emissions equivalent to just 0.1 per cent fuel-sulfur content. Sembawang Shipyard (SSPL), Singapore are interested in a potential retrofit project for seawater scrubbers.

Switching to low sulfur fuels has other problems as the International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association said recently, producing enough low sulfur content distillates to meet the IMO 2015 target on main engines would be “difficult” and “significantly more expensive”. Meeting later targets would need “major refinery investment” and may “not be economically feasible”. This suggests price increases are to be expected!

 
 
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