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Cleaner combustion

New system uses hydrogen, oxygen and water to improve energy efficiency

German shipping company SAL Heavy Lift says that, in a world first, it has introduced a new hydrogen/methanol technology into its fleet. It claims: “With significant emission reductions in terms of CO2, SOx, NOx and other particles, the injection technology developed by manufacturer Fuelsave paves the way for making shipping greener and more energy efficient.”

According to the company the FS MARINE+ hydrogen / methanol injection system is now in the onboard validation stage, following more than four years of close cooperation, testing and development between SAL and Fuelsave in a project including as stakeholders EcoTune Marine, classification society DNVGL as recognised organisation for Antigua and Barbuda, Carl Baguhn, MAN Energy solutions, MAC System Solutions, AVL and the flag state administration of Germany. The next stage will be permanent installation on a further six SAL vessels.


SAL says that, by dynamically injecting a mix of hydrogen, oxygen, water and methanol into selected parts of the air intake of both the main engine and the auxiliary engines, the FS MARINE+ system ensures a much cleaner and thorough combustion process, resulting in reduced primary fuel consumption and reduced emissions and air pollution.SAL’s chief technical officer Sebastian Westphal, says: “We have tested a prototype on a generator engine of our MV Annette over more than two years with very convincing results. The FS MARINE+ system not only achieved significant fuel savings, but also emission and air pollution reductions which was verified by third parties both during field trials and in laboratory tests.”


Fuelsave ‘s CEO Marc Sima says: “With this system we are driving the clean fuel transition with a high impact solution. It can optimize the energy consumption and the environmental impact significantly irrespective of what fuel type you operate your vessel with. Thus, it is applicable with MDO, MGO, HFO, LSFO as well as LNG. We are looking forward together with SAL to take a lead in supporting the shipping industry in its efforts to become more environmentally sustainable.


SAL says in a statement: “By investing millions of dollars into retrofitting the system to the main engines and auxiliary engines on existing vessels it may appear that SAL is taking a big financial bet, but the results in terms of savings and payback time proves quite the opposite.” The head of the company’s fleet development team, Jakob Christiansen, says: “We ran the system for two years without a single incident and obtained results that matched the promised numbers. So, we see a technology that meets our green ambitions while also reducing the technical operating costs of the ships”.


Ammonia fuelled container ship
US-based classification society ABS is to advise MAN Energy Solutions (MAN) and the Shanghai Merchant Ship Design & Research Institute (SDARI) on compliance and safety considerations in the development of a 2,700 TEU ammonia-fuelled Chittagongmax container carrier.


“Ammonia is an energy source with significant potential to help the industry meet IMO 2030 and 2050 emission targets but will require stringent new safety standards to be developed in order to support its adoption,” said ABS Vice President, Global Marine, Christina Wang.


SDARI will develop the ship design and engineering, which will utilise MAN’s dual fuel technology and ABS will assess safety-related issues and contribute to the development of rules and standards in relation to ammonia as a fuel.


Conceptual design development is the initial phase of the joint development project, with the second phase moving to engagement with owners to develop designs tailored to their specific operational requirements.


“Building upon SDARI’s experience in feeder container vessels, we are actively seeking to develop next generation designs that incorporate strategies to meet IMO 2030 and 2050 targets,” said SDARI Vice President Zho Zhiyongu.


A statement noted that ammonia, when generated by renewable energy sources, has no carbon footprint and emits almost no CO2, SOx or particulate matter when burned in engines. It did not say, however, whether the ammonia to be used would be from renewable sources.


Hydrogen hybrid PCC study
Japan-based shipping group Mitsui OSK Lines and vessel electrification and digitalization specialist e5 Lab have concluded a memorandum of understanding to conduct a joint study of a hybrid pure car carrier equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell system and large capacity batteries.


The companies aim to develop a hydrogen hybrid PCC, which does not emit CO2, SOx, NOx, or particulate matter while underway in coastal waters or in ports, with electricity supplied by the hydrogen fuel cell system and large-capacity batteries. When navigating in the open sea, the hydrogen hybrid PCC’s motor would be powered by an LNG fuelled generator and the large capacity batteries.


MOL has been working to achieve zero emissions from vessels in port since it announced its future vision for the next-generation series “ISHIN-I” car carrier in 2009. In 2012, it launched the world’s first hybrid car carrier, the Emerald Ace, which is equipped with the world’s largest-scale solar power generation system and batteries. The company says that the hydrogen hybrid PCC concept marks a further step ahead from these past projects, and the company is pursuing the possibility of introducing more extensive and more advanced technologies with the goal of zero emissions.

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