Experiments to curtail CO2 emissions

By Keith Henderson at June 06, 2010 13:12
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Projects running with NYK Line ships under the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism are investigating technological developments to curtail CO2 emissions from marine vessels. In the main project, two NYK ships, are equipped with an air blower to supply air to the vessel's bottom to reduce frictional resistance. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries supplied the engines and is also participating in the experiment. It was decided that, a module carrier, would be best type of vessel for this experiment. she has a wide, shallow-draft hull minimizing the energy required by the electrically blower supplying air to the vessel's bottom and should better retain the supplied air under the vessel's bottom.

Three parallel projects are currently running with NYK Line ships under the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism initiative to investigate technological developments to curtail CO2 emissions from marine vessels. Project 1 concerns hull friction reduction, in a twin screw shallow draft vessel using air lubrication. Project 2 looks into using larger car carriers to reduce the CO2 emissions per car carried. Project 3 is using a navigation control system to improve planning to make better use of port berth windows and canal passage reservations, thereby reducing time wastage.

In Project 1, two NYK ships, the Yamatai launched in March this year and the Yamato due in November are equipped with an air blower to supply air to the vessel's bottom to reduce frictional resistance. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries supplied the engines and is also participating in the experiment.

It was decided that, a module carrier, would be best type of vessel for this experiment. Compared to other large vessels, she has a wide, shallow-draft hull that would produce relatively lower water pressure and therefore minimize the energy required by the electrically powered blower supplying air to the vessel's bottom. Furthermore the flat, wide bottom should better retain the supplied air under the vessel's bottom and reduce loss up the sides.

There are main objectives of the experiment: verifying the fuel savings using air lubrication, investigating the air bubble type and behavior under differing sea conditions, determining the relationship between volume of air supplied and its effect and determining the actual CO2 reduction.
Progress reports on Projects 2 and 3 will be released at a later date.

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