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August/September 2018

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Contents August/September 2018 volume 40 issue 4



Market analysis 15 Tankers – the supply/demand dynamic is souring rates, and new additions are not helping matters 29 Bulkers – a sustained recovery in rates for the dry bulk market is unlikely, with any positive periods being followed by dips in form


Yard profile 25 Possible new orders are offering a glimmer of hope to the Philly Shipyard and NASSCO yards

SMM preview 37 A look at the technology and issues taking centre stage at this year′s SMM

Enginebuilder profile 43 MAN Energy Solutions’ latest power unit has been designed with LPG carriers in mind, allowing vessels to consume a fraction of their cargo as fuel


Two-stroke engines 49 Engine manufacturers are turning to increasingly advanced solutions to make their power units cleaner and greener

Four-stroke engines 53 Four-stroke enginebuilders are honing existing units, rather than starting from scratch, so shipowners do not need to invest in new maintenance equipment

Dual-fuel engines 57 Progress Rail has introduced dual-fuel engines for a new generation of tugboats


Engineroom safety 60 With the smallest oversight potentially leading to a devastating fire, how best can safety be ensued in this dangerous environment?

Driveline: transmission 67 We look at the latest developments powering shipping forward in this sector round-up

Stern tube bearing failure 72 Why are incidences of stern tube bearing failures increasing and what can be done to counter the problem? 81 How to avoid stern tube damage resulting from incomplete propeller immersion

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Contents August/September 2018 volume 40 issue 4

Electrical and hybrid systems: energy storage 83 Operators are turning to energy storage systems to provide environmentally friendly power 89 Frequency convertors and motors – an over view of the latest sector developments and news 95 Powerplants – a new project is testing the suitability of fuel cells for marine use; plus, a rundown of product developments

Green technology 101 Ponant’s Explorers-class cruise ship employs energy-efficiency technology not seen before in the operator’s fleet 105 Brunvoll and Stadt target green propulsion technology

Spares supply

Head of Content: Edwin Lampert t: +44 20 8370 7017 e: Production Editor: Kevin Turner t: +44 20 8370 1737 e: Brand Manager – Sales: Tom Kenny t: +44 7432 156 339 e: Sales Manager: Rob Gore t: +44 20 8370 7007 e: Sales: Paul Dowling t: +44 20 8370 7014 e:

109 Drone technology and 3D printing are ushering in a new era in the delivery and supply of spares

Sales: Jo Lewis t: +44 20 8370 7793 e:

Scrubbers and emissions

Head of Sales – Asia: Kym Tan t: +65 6809 1278 e:

118 A strict implementation of IMO’s sulphur cap could drives up distillate prices 119 A shortage of scrubbers may result in a shortage of heavy fuel oil, but that is not stopping DHT fitting scrubbers to VLCCs 121 ACL will use Alfa Laval PureSOx scrubbers and Arendals Dampskibsselskab is to organise a speculative VLCC scrubber sortie 122 Frontline buys scrubbers and a part of the manufacturer, while FuelSave chief executive says methanol and hydrogen are the future 125 DNV GL is introducing emissions notation; 24 scrubbers added to Star Bulk fleet 126 Wärtsilä reports a US$200M scrubber sale and EGCSA nears 1,000 scrubber installations

Group Production Manager: Mark Lukmanji t: +44 20 8370 7019 e: Chairman: John Labdon Managing Director: Steve Labdon Finance Director: Cathy Labdon Operations Director: Graham Harman Head of Production: Hamish Dickie

Clean burning marine fuels 128 Niels Bjørn Mortensen looks at the marine fuels landscape and the changes new regulations are likely to bring

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

ISSN 1742-2825 (Print) ISSN 2051-056X (Online) 2020 Vision 132 North of England P&I Association’s “Get Ready for the Sulphur Cap” event shed light on the ramifications of the new regulation

Published by: Riviera Maritime Media Ltd Mitre House 66 Abbey Road Enfield EN1 2QN UK

Alternative fuels 134 A closer look at the options available when diesel finally expires

Fuel treatments and additives 140 Additives have a big role to play in the development of 2020-compliant fuel ©2018 Riviera Maritime Media Ltd

Fuel systems 146 How are modern fuel systems helping operators make big savings?

Total average net circulation: 11,000 Period: January-December 2017

Fuels and lubes

Disclaimer: Although every effort has been made to ensure that the information in this publication is correct, the Author and Publisher accept no liability to any party for any inaccuracies that may occur. Any third party material included with the publication is supplied in good faith and the Publisher accepts no liability in respect of content. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, reprinted or stored in any electronic medium or transmitted in any form or by any means without prior written permission of the copyright owner.

151 A look at the technologies grabbing the headlines in the fuels and lubricants area

E-mobility 154 ABB Marine & Ports’ Mikko Lepistö explains why the development of new consumer technology will transform shipping

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Fuel for thought M Edwin Lampert, Head of Content

“If creating a market as a marine fuel increases hydrogen's value and makes its use uneconomic, a win-win technology becomes a lose-lose alternative”

arine Propulsion is choosing to focus its comment on alternative fuels, and in this issue we look at three of them – hydrogen, methanol and nuclear. But let's start with a fuel not covered in that report: emulsified HFO. We are prompted to do this following a phone call on 30 July with Tuvia Berger, the Israel-based marketing manager of MEC Green Energy. He is an advocate of the benefits of adding water to fuel, which he says will improve combustion because the vaporising water splits the fuel into microdroplets. Mr Berger was responding to a call issued by Marine Propulsion for solutions to what we described as the dilemma of finding a lowcarbon alternative to the choice of LNG or a scrubber+HFO combination that have become the frontrunners to become the low-SOx fuels of choice, before carbon reduction was made a long-term target. Mr Berger argued that emulsified fuel improves fuel consumption, with efficiencies improving in slow-steaming modes, thus reducing carbon emissions. He believes that emulsified fuel offers better efficiency, less wasted energy, less wasted fuel – in short, better all round – and will thus reduce carbon emissions from shipping. Another alternative is hydrogen and a few weeks ago Marine Propulsion described a Scottish ferry scheme that will use wind energy

to produce the hydrogen as a game-changer. The project’s naval architect, Chris Dunn, takes a more cautious approach. “We have a lot of work to do to persuade service users that a hydrogen ferry will be as safe, if not safer, than a traditionally powered vessel,” he said. That’s because people associate it with bombs and airship disasters. Marine Propulsion’s point in telling you this is to lay out some food for thought. Emulsions have been talked about for many years, yet have never caught on. Why? Is it simply because – as Carnival decided after its 2002 experiment – the emulsion is unstable or is it this industry’s natural conservatism? And is hydrogen being over-hyped? If creating a market as a marine fuel increases its value and makes its use uneconomic, a win-win technology becomes a lose-lose alternative. If you are working in this area of engineering, have you modelled this effect? Disruptive technologies like these should be welcomed and explored, but long-term winners and losers are not always obvious. MP The Riviera team will be in attendance throughout this year’s SMM in Hall A3, Stand 410. We’d love to hear your news and feedback on the event, our products and the industry in general, so please stop by for a chat. We look forward to seeing you there.

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Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


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Is the predicted boom in Arctic shipping bad for the environment? Master mariner and naval architect Niels Bjørn Mortensen looks at the consequences for shipping and the environment of an ice-free Arctic


ariners have known about short cuts to the Pacific via the Arctic for a long time. The Northern Sea Route (NSR), north of Siberia, was discovered 300 years ago, and the Northwest Passage (NWP) has been on the map for more than a century. Although these routes are much shorter than the traditional trading routes from Europe and the eastern US to the Pacific, until recently they were only navigable by specialised ships. They have not been considered commercially viable until now.

Global warming

Niels Bjørn Mortensen: In the Arctic, warming is at a much higher level than the global average

The world is warming, and over the last several decades climate change has begun to significantly change the game for vessel navigation. Alarmingly, global warming is not evenly distributed over the globe. In the Arctic, warming is at a much higher level than the global average. Svalbard, Norway, for example, is experiencing a temperature increase that is 6°C higher than the global average. In September 1980, Arctic ice covered some 8M km2. In 2012, Arctic ice cover dropped to less than half that area – 3.4M km2 – the lowest level ever recorded. The reduction in Arctic ice cover is relatively linear and the trend means the NSR and the NWR are now navigable for part of the year, every year. Peaking with 71 transits in 2013, the NSR to the north of Russia has been more popular for commercial transits than its counterpart in the Americas, but NSR transits declined after 2013 and were down to 25 in 2017. Nevertheless, due to the drop in Arctic sea ice and enormous amounts of oil, natural gas and various metal ores, the Siberian coast has seen a significant increase in shipping activities. Decreasing ice coverage in the Arctic would open a larger window for transits. A report published in the journal Nature

Climate Change in June 2018 predicts that, even if we manage to keep temperature change within the parameters of the 2°C temperature increase, as embedded in the Paris Agreement, we will experience a completely ice-free Arctic during the Northern hemisphere's summer months within this century.

An ice-free Arctic summer

As of now, vessels cut off 40% of the distance travelled between Rotterdam and Yokohama by using the NSR. An ice-free Arctic would likely mean 50% or more in miles saved over traditional routes. Shipping could save millions of tonnemiles and huge amounts of fuel if the predicted growth of the NSR’s navigable window holds true, an outcome that would be good for shipping’s global greenhouse gas emissions account. Could we then conclude that the melting of Arctic ice, due to global warming, will be a means to mitigate global warming, due to reduced CO2 emissions from shipping? As ironic as that outcome would be, it is not that simple.

Black carbon

One alarm raised by some green NGOs, which is supported by many nations including some of the Arctic littoral states,

“We [could] experience a completely ice-free Arctic during the Northern hemisphere's summer months within this century”

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


is that shipping’s emissions of black carbon (BC) in the Arctic is actually speeding up the melting of Arctic ice - sea ice as well as glacial ice. Black carbon is basically soot emanating from incomplete engine combustion and is generally believed to be more closely related to the combustion of heavy fuel oil (HFO) than that of lighter distillates. It is also related to the condition of the engine, as well as the engine load. Scientists have predicted negative consequences from the rapid melting of Arctic sea ice and the Arctic glaciers that will be felt globally. Melting will result in rising sea levels globally, threatening the existence of many island states. More open water means further absorption of the sun’s warmth and heating of the Arctic Ocean an accelerating cycle. Many large cities will need to invest in expensive climate change mitigation enterprises, such as increasing the height and extent of dykes and barriers. Two obvious examples of the threat to low-lying cities are New Orleans, which was inundated during Hurricane Katrina and New York and New Jersey, which faced huge storm surges from Hurricane Sandy. Rising sea levels and a likely increase in the frequency and violence of hurricanes creates frightening scenarios for low-lying cities and countries. Massive melting of Arctic ice might also, according to some scientists, force the Gulf Stream to take a more southerly course, which will result in a much colder

In September 1980, Arctic ice covered 8M km2; by 2012, it had fallen to just 3.4M km2 – the lowest level ever recorded

northern Europe. So even as climate change produces an average increase in global temperatures, there are likely to be regions that will experience colder weather and climate.

Banning HFO in the Arctic

Last year, Canada and other states proposed that IMO should commence work on mitigating the risks of use and carriage of HFO as fuel by ships in the Arctic. The European Parliament has broadly supported this move by adopting a resolution calling for a ban on the use of HFO in Arctic waters. Prior to that, in October 2016, the IMO at MEPC 70 decided that from 1 January 2020, all ships operating outside Emission Control Areas (ECAs) must not burn fuel oil with a sulphur content above 0.5% (by mass). When that rule United States was adopted in 2008, it of America was believed that such future fuel oil would Bathymetry (metres) be distillate, either Russian 200 m Canada Federation marine gas oil or 500 m marine diesel oil. 2,500 m 4,000 m One could 5,000 m then infer that the problem of carriage Northwest passage Northeast passage of HFO in the Arctic Greenland Northern sea route would be resolved by 2020. But, again, it is not that simple. In connection with the 0.1% sulphur limit in ECAs in 2015, a number of new fuels have since emerged that do not fall A map of the Arctic region showing the Northern Sea Route under the traditional and the Northwest Passage (credit: Wikipedia Commons)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

definition of distillate fuel. It is expected that the 2020 global cap of a 0.5% sulphur limit will see the introduction of many new fuels. Some of these are expected to be based on de-sulphurised HFO, derived from sweet crude; others might be blends of HFO with low-sulphur products. It could even be new oil products that the world has not yet seen. It should thus be evident that a carriage ban only on HFO as fuel might not be the silver bullet some are anticipating. The issue was discussed at the latest MEPC (72) in April 2018, where a range of potential problems were identified. These included the possible health impact on Arctic communities and the lack of a clear definition of HFO in this particular context. It will be on the agenda for the next MEPC (73) in October, and members have been urged to submit concrete proposals for methodologies to govern an appropriate impact-assessment process. The Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR) subcommittee of MEPC will then be tasked to consider the topic and produce text as appropriate.

Polar Code

Arctic navigation is covered by IMO’s Polar Code, setting out minimum structural and operational requirements, basically adding a layer upon SOLAS, Marpol and other international conventions. The Code took effect on 1 January 2017. A couple of questions remain unanswered: • Will a possible ban on HFO in Arctic waters have a real effect after 2020? • Will the Polar Code be able to exclude “bounty hunters” and leave the Arctic trade to the experienced operators? MP

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How does oil market volatility affect vessel efficiency? Foreship head of hydrodynamics Janne Niittymäki explains how uncertain fuel costs prompt vessel efficiency considerations


Free surface dz (m) 0.04 0.02 0 -0.02 -0.04


could expect to use 10% less propulsion power than considered hydrodynamically excellent a decade ago. Operability analysis also relies on established ship design and construction software that has been augmented to introduce data such as voyage route planning at an earlier stage than is customary. Voyage simulations should be made portto-port, scheduled as starting on a given day at a given time and having a target arrival date and time. Realism is added to our model by using hind-cast environmental data of the wind, waves and currents on the actual route.

Can different ship types be compared? Foreship’s operability analysis uses CFD to calculate bow wave heights, as here, as part of its fuel consumption prediction (credit: Foreship)

What is behind the oil price volatility?

A moderate rise morphed into a three-year high in April on the threat of shortages from Iran and Venezuela before Saudi Arabian and Russian offers to turn up the taps prompted a 7.5% decline. These circumstances present a challenge to shipowners that believe they can pass on fuel surcharges to cargo owners and charterers after IMO’s 2020 global cap on 0.5% sulphur content comes into force. This cap will have implications for availability, while low-sulphur HFO quality may vary from different sources. Both factors are drivers of price. After a three-year taste of lower fuel bills, the Global Shippers Forum pushed back hard in May against ‘emergency’ US$120140/FEU levies to cover rising oil prices.

Are there benefits from cleaner fuel?

Cleaner fuels may be more expensive, but they are also more energy efficient than HFO. They do not need heating up and are less corrosive, making more energy recoverable from them.

How does consumption vary with speed?

At 18 knots, the average daily fuel consumption of a 13,000-TEU capacity container ship is around 90 tonnes, according to a 2015 study published by

the National University of Singapore*. At June 2018 bunker fuel prices, that would cost US$40,680/day. At 16 knots, the same ship would consume 70 tonnes/day, costing US$31,640. But that paper showed that, between those speeds, consumption can range between 60-100 tonnes/day, depending on factors including weather/sea conditions, displacement and trim. Fuel use can increase dramatically when a ship faces strong bow waves, for example, so maximising efficiency is about more than slow steaming. It includes running engines at optimum load and avoiding excessive speeds to ‘guarantee’ on-time arrival.

How can design improve efficiency?

At Foreship we use a software-driven methodology called ‘operability analysis’ to consider design attributes. It draws on our project database to model the performance of different design options and operating conditions. Using computational fluid dynamics (CFD), its ‘in-wave’ analysis factors real sea states into hull form optimisation and has supported a case for the superior performance of vertical stems over bulbous bows at lower wave heights than was previously acknowledged. CFD has also contributed strongly to propulsion efficiency. A modern design

Operability analysis allows, for example, cargo shipowners to evaluate whether innovations in the cruise-ship market can impact on optimising cargo efficiency. As an example, since 2011 Foreship has developed an air lubrication system, Foreship ALS, originally for cruise ships. The projected net fuel saving is inferred from the percentage decrease in the braked power used for propulsion when the system is in use. In the cruise-ship applications, net fuel savings equivalent to 7-8% have been achieved. A detailed feasibility study has been undertaken for a large ropax ferry, showing it to be suitable for ferries operating at <20 knots featuring high propulsion power. Most recently, Foreship conducted a promising feasibility study to use ALS to optimise fuel consumption on a container ship, which has a very different hull shape from a cruise ship. Our simulations indicate that 5% savings in fuel consumption are achievable at operating speeds from 12 knots upwards.

Does such technology give a negotiating benefit?

When shipowners are aware of what is – and is not – realistic from design variables, they are more informed and thus in a better position than they would otherwise be to discuss the vessel’s performance specification. They will also be more able to negotiate any bonus scheme for surpassing expectations! MP *Budgeting the fuel consumption of a container ship over a round voyage via robust fuel optimisation (

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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The largest single VLCC deal this year occurred when Norway-based Ocean Yield agreed to purchase four VLCC newbuild vessels from Okeanis Marine Holdings

tankers MARKET ANALYSIS | 15

Sale and purchase activity in the tanker sector Any benefits from the steady stream of VLCC sales for scrapping has been countered by new additions to the fleet


he current VLCC fleet consists of 736 vessels with a total capacity of 226M dwt and an average age of nine years old, according to VesselsValue. A further 115 VLCCs with a capacity of 36M dwt are on order. In the first half of 2018, 28 VLCCs were sold for recycling, compared to just one in the same period of 2017. Under normal circumstances, one would expect to see something of a boost in rates from such a large number of vessels removed from the fleet; however, as the BIMCO tanker market report shows, other forces have been at play. The average age of those sold was 19 years old, which is only around twice the average age of the live fleet. The average age quantum also includes four VLCCs of only 17 years old. The oldest, the Mitsubishi HI Symeon 2 was probably designed for a working life of 30 years, rather than being sold for scrap at 24 years old. Two features stand out from the list of the 28 VLCCs sold for recycling. The first is the number of VLCCs sold by the same owners. DS Tankers of Germany sold four VLCCs which had an average age of 18.5 years, whose presence in the fleet can be traced back to the KG financing boom, of which the emissions house Dr Peters was one of the few to offer portfolios consisting of large tankers. The KG finance scheme — and indeed large tankers ordered, financed, owned and operated by Germans — is

coming to an end, but like all things in shipping, it may re-appear in another guise and in another shipping cycle. The other multiple seller was the Polembros family of Greece, which is a traditional buyer of secondhand tonnage from Japanese buyers; it then trades the vessel to scrap. Together, Polembros Shipping and Adam Polembros’ company New Shipping sold a total of five VLCCs in the first six months of 2018. One of these included the aforementioned Symeon 2, which had been built as a single-hull VLCC and converted to double hull in 2009. Symeon 2 and three other VLCCs scrapped in the first half of 2018 were powered by variants of the two-stroke large bore Mitsubishi UEC LSE-type engine. The UEC had first been produced in Japan in 1955 and constantly upgraded, with the LSE variant produced in 1988. According to VesselsValue, there are still 22 VLCCs in operation with Mitsubishi UEC main engines, all built in Mitsubishi yards. The youngest are 305,000 dwt VLCCs built for MOL between 2011 and 2013.

VLCC sale and purchase activity

Not surprisingly, New Shipping was active in the sale and purchase market for VLCC to replace those being sold for scrap. It purchased two 15-year old VLCCs, Rokkosan and Vega

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

16 | MARKET ANALYSIS tankers

Trader, from MOL. However, the largest single VLCC deal this year occurred when Norway-based Ocean Yield agreed to purchase four VLCC newbuild vessels from the Alafouzos family’s Okeanis Marine Holdings, managed by Kyklades Maritime Corporation. The VLCCs are under construction at the Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in South Korea, set for delivery in Q2 and Q3 2019. Then valued at just over US$82M by VesselsValue market data, the 319,200 dwt vessels were said to be worth approximately US$84M, according to Ocean Yield at the time of sale. The deal is part of a 15-year sale and leaseback bareboat charter agreement to Okeanis Marine subsidiaries and includes a five-year sub-charter for all four VLCCs to the shipping arm of a “large industrial conglomerate”, according to an Ocean Yield statement. The contract includes acquisition options, with the first available seven years into the charter agreement according to Ocean Yield.

“Every VLCC that enters the Bahri fleet displaces an independent owner’s chances of winning some Saudi Arabian business” Ocean Yield chief executive Lars Solbakken said “The investment is done at historically low asset values and will increase our EBITDA charter backlog by about 16% to US$3.4Bn.” At the beginning of the year, it was widely believed that the VLCC fleet would be approaching equilibrium towards the end of 2018 – if no further orders were placed. However, deliveries have almost equalled scrapping sales. In total 24 VLCCs entered the fleet in the first six months of 2018, not the two or three required to slide the fleet toward profitability. Some of these deliveries were simply part of the regular cycle, such as Japanese operators replacing tonnage at 15 years old. K Line took delivery of the 311,979 dwt VLCC Tedorigawa, the

first in a series of new-generation VLCC and Aframax tankers. Its most outstanding feature is the lack of a bulbous bow. According to a statement released by K Line, Tedorigawa’s plumb bow, coupled with an ultra-long-stroke, low-speed main engine and highly efficient large diameter propeller will achieve a 20% reduction in fuel consumption compared with similar vessels. The VLCC newbuilding is also fitted with a ballast water management system. The tanker was constructed at Nantong COSCO KHI Ship Engineering in China and is classed by ABS. It was ordered in 2016 as part of a contract for three VLCCs and two Aframax tankers. Other deliveries spoke of ambition; Bahri, the national Saudi Arabian operator, took delivery of five VLCCs and is building a fleet of VLCCs to deliver its own crude oil. Every VLCC that enters the Bahri fleet displaces an independent owner’s chances of winning some Saudi Arabian business. Indeed, now that Saudi Arabia is committed to building its own shipyard, the shipyards in the Far East are likely to see a fall in demand, too. In what could well be a world first, Almi Tankers of Greece has taken delivery of a VLCC newbuilding, Almi Atlas, that comes complete with a Tier III engine and a SOx scrubber as standard. Most VLCC newbuilding deliveries this year have been fitted with an older, less environmentally friendly Tier II-compliant engine design, with the possibility of a SOx scrubber to be fitted at a later date. The 315,221 dwt Almi Atlas is the first of two VLCCs from its newbuilding project at Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries and was delivered to its owners at the Mokpo shipyard. Among other environmentally friendly technologies on board, Almi Atlas is equipped with the HYUNDAI-B&W 7G80ME - C9.5 EGRTC (Tier III) Green-type engine and is one of the first vessels of its size with a Tier III engine. The G-type is an ultra-long-stroke engine, which, in conjunction with a larger diameter propeller, is said to offer significant fuel savings and produce less emissions than engines with the same output, thus classifying it as one of the most environmentally efficient propulsion systems. The vessel is also equipped with the Hyundai HiBallast HiB 6000ex ballast water management system. Almi Atlas flies the Liberian flag and is classed by DNV-GL. MP

Market equilibrium by the end of the year for the VLCC segment hinges on owners staying away from newbuildings

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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tankers MARKET ANALYSIS | 19

Tanker market struggles to find support It has been a bleak time of late in the crude oil tanker sector, with the supply/ demand dynamic souring rates and little on the horizon to raise much cheer

The crude oil tanker fleet has continued to grow faster than demand and losses have returned to the industry


ince records began crude oil tanker earnings have never been this bad.” So says chief shipping analyst at BIMCO Peter Sand. It is a grim outlook, but sadly accurate. Earnings for very large crude carriers (VLCCs) in the first half of 2018 were as low as US$6,001 per day on average, with a Suezmax tanker earning US$10,908 per day and an Aframax making US$9,614 per day; all heavily loss-making levels for an industry which needs a much-improved market balance to lift freight rates above breakeven levels into profitable territory. Having enjoyed a very strong 2015, that saw the highest freight rates for crude oil tankers in seven years, 2016 was a step down, but still profit making. But as the crude oil tanker fleet kept growing faster than demand in 2017, losses returned to the industry, after three profitable years. And it has been downhill from there, according to Mr Sand: “2018 has been absolutely horrible for crude oil tankers, with freight rates and the fleet utilisation rate falling to a record-low level. The total crude oil tanker fleet has not grown at all in 2018; in fact, the VLCC and Aframax fleets specifically have not been growing over the past 12 months.” Further, Mr Sand points to the freight market, which is severely impacted by very weak demand growth, “Overall, the freight market is oversupplied. The key to higher earnings lies within a very low fleet growth and a return to normalised demand levels.” When can we expect crude oil tanker freight rates to deliver profits to owners and operators again? And when will overcapacity be significantly reduced? Most likely we must wait until the second half of 2019 before an improved market balance will drag the industry out of the red. But could anything exacerbate a recovery? Since the beginning of 2018, massive demolition activity of excess capacity in the crude oil tanker sector has resulted in an unchanged fleet size. This activity is a critical driver for a recovery. Some 13M dwt was demolished in the first half of 2018. Moreover, a different oil market balance may also cause a return to an oil price contango

(contango is a situation where the future price of a commodity is higher than the spot price). An oil price contango is likely to indicate an increased demand for tankers for floating storage. When conducting a fundamental analysis of the crude oil tanker market the focus is on calculating the utilisation rate of the fleet, with the aim of developing a strong correlation between that and the actual freight rates. For the dry bulk market, that correlation is very strong, and BIMCO has used this to show the road to recovery for the dry bulk market. For the crude oil tanker market, the correlation is weaker, but still strong enough to rely on for

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

20 | MARKET ANALYSIS tankers

Floating storage in the mix

Taking floating storage into the calculations provides a better understanding of the volatility experienced over recent years and particularly the improvement in freight rates seen in 2015. That year saw a significant increase in floating storage from 2014, where 20 units on average were deployed. During 2016, an average of 44 VLCCs were used for storage, meaning that the nominal fleet growth, as measured by dwt only, was more than reversed by capacity ‘taken out of active trading’ for floating storage purposes. In 2016, the amount of floating storage was even higher, but inefficiencies in fleet operations that also contributed to a reduction in active fleet growth in 2015 had eased, driving supplyside growth higher than demand-side growth. That resulted in freight rates reducing from 2015 to 2016. 2017 saw a low level of floating storage, meaning that the supply side grew faster than the nominal fleet development. As supply (adjusted for floating storage) significantly exceeded an otherwise solid demand growth,

Changes to the fundamental market balance 100%

100% 95%

93% 88%

10% 88%



80% 80%

Utilisation rate (line)

Demand and supply annual rates (columns)

2004-2018E 15%

80% 70%


70% 73% 72%

68% 69%


67% 67%





2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018E


Supply (adjusted for floating storage)

Utilisation rate (RH-axis)

Source: BIMCO supply estimates (2004-2018), BIMCO utilisation estimates (2004-2018), Clarksons demand growth rates (20042018). Note: the circled years (2014-2017) are where demand growth outstrips supply growth – improving the fundamental market balance

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Crude oil tanker earnings 2015-2018

USD per day

USD per day


























0 Jan 2015 Feb 2015 Mar 2015 Apr 2015 May 2015 Jun 2015 Jul 2015 Aug 2015 Sep 2015 Oct 2015 Nov 2015 Dec 2015 Jan 2016 Feb 2016 Mar 2016 Apr 2016 May 2016 Jun 2016 Jul 2016 Aug 2016 Sep 2016 Oct 2016 Nov 2016 Dec 2016 Jan 2017 Feb 2017 Mar 2017 Apr 2017 May 2017 Jun 2017 Jul 2017 Aug 2017 Sep 2017 Oct 2017 Nov 2017 Dec 2017 Jan 2018 Feb 2018 Mar 2018 Apr 2018 May 2018 Jun 2018 Jul 2018

directions – so is the market going up or down? In the short term, freight rates may react more strongly than the underlying tanker market fundamentals indicate; 2018 is an example of that. The first half of the year has seen a very serious deterioration of freight rates when compared to 2017, a drop which the medium- to longer-term fundamental changes alone cannot explain. Therefore, changes to the utilisation rates mostly give an indication of the direction of the market, up or down (much more than a specific freight rate level). For that reason, BIMCO keeps its focus on changes to the supply/demand balance, rather than forecasting specific freight rate levels for the coming years. For the supply side, it is important to acknowledge the impact of floating storage. When low, it is irrelevant, but when it becomes widespread it provides a positive trigger to the market, as the available trading fleet becomes nominally smaller. The correlation between freight rates and utilisation improves quite a lot when adjusting for floating storage, as we do here.




Source: BIMCO, Clarksons

freight rates and fleet utilisation rates dropped. Floating storage is a key element of the dynamics of the crude oil carrier market, due to its impact — when it becomes big enough — and its unpredictable nature, reflecting the very volatile oil market. It is a dynamic that we do not see in other bulk trades. Asian demand is increasingly dominating the market. The general trend over the past 10 years has been one of oil demand and oil imports growing in China and India; with oil imports contracting for the most part in North America. Crude oil tanker shipping has benefitted from longer sailing distances to China, but naturally needs Chinese import volumes to continue to grow, even if North American imports are not likely to reduce much further. The outlook is that the supply side will command the future. At the moment, 110 VLCCs are left on the orderbooks, and that is the figure that matters. The order book also holds 50 Suezmax and 124 Aframax tankers, but that does not really impact the bigger picture. The VLCCs are scheduled for delivery within the next 33 months. Naturally, owners are in intense talks with shipyards about possible postponements of delivery dates as the market is bad right now. In BIMCO’s opinion, it seems safe to say that the supply side holds the key to an improved freight market – and a change of the utilisation rate provides the direction of the market. Keeping crude oil tanker demolition activity high while holding back on contracting new ships is required to tame fleet growth, today and tomorrow. How big a task the supply side is faced with will depend very much on the future demand for floating storage capacity. A big juicy oil price contango in 2019 would have a major positive impact on freight rate levels. It is not possible to predict if a significant contango will materialise and that is why we cannot make a firmer prediction as to when real improvements will appear. Demand-side growth may ease the way towards healthier freight rates, but its support in the coming years seems uncertain and cannot be relied upon. As BIMCO has said before, 2018 is set to become another loss-making year for the crude oil tanker industry. Looking ahead, the year when the industry will return to profitable freight rate levels depends on the supply side growing (adjusted for the use of floating storage) at a much lower level than the demand side. Small improvements to the fundamental balance will not be enough to turn around the market. MP

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Potential new order brings hope to Jones Act builder Philly Shipyard and NASSCO both rely on work for US trades, but in the current environment their options are limited


ith the Jones Act requiring ships on domestic trades to be built in the US, there is a clear need for domestic shipbuilders with the skills and facilities to build sophisticated tankers for the nation’s coastal trades. Their problem, however, is that there is less of a need for new ships in the markets they serve. Two builders in particular have made a name in this sector: Philly Shipyard, which is owned by Norway’s Aker Group and based in Philadelphia, and General Dynamics NASSCO – which has four yards, on both the US east and west coasts. One sign of hope emerged in a brief note in Philly Shipyard’s latest results, published on 16 July and covering its H1 and Q2 figures, from January to June. In a two-line paragraph headed ‘Subsequent Events’ it reported that on 16 July, “Philly Shipyard and an undisclosed potential customer executed a non-binding term sheet, or letter of intent, for the construction and sale of two newbuild Jones Act Medium Range (MR) product tankers.” It offered more detail later in the report, saying that the discussions were active and that the ships would be 50,000-dwt vessels, “substantially similar to the recently completed series of eight MT-50 class product tankers.” Deliveries would be scheduled for Q4 2020 and Q1 2021. That news was a bright point at the end of a difficult six months. As the report also noted, during that time the yard had laid off about a quarter of its employees while it looks for new work. In

June, it also started what it called “an orderly liquidation process” of Oslo-listed Philly Tankers, in which the yard held a majority stake. That process was set in motion in November last year with the delivery of the last of four 50,000-dwt product tankers that had been ordered by Philly Tankers, in pairs, in July 2014 and July 2015 for a total price of US$500M. In August 2015, Philly Tankers reached an agreement with a subsidiary of the energy infrastructure company Kinder Morgan Inc (KMI) to take over each of the contracts on completion in a deal worth US$560M.

Yard investment

Philly Shipyard’s history has been underpinned by Jones Act product tankers for the past 13 years, since it became part of Aker American Shipping, which had been formed to build and own Jones Act tankers through the American Shipping Company (ASC). It benefited from extensive investment between 1998 and 2000 to optimise the yard for commercial shipbuilding. It had been founded in 1997 by the City of Philadelphia, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the US Government and the Kværner Shipbuilding Division, using part of the former Philadelphia Naval Shipyard which had closed in 1995. In 2005, the shipyard started a construction programme of product tankers. So far, it has delivered 14 of its 46,000-dwt MT-46 Veteran Class product tankers and eight of its 50,000dwt MT-50 vessels. Both designs are 183 m in length and 32.2 m

NASSCO’s naval heritage is clear from this view from the bridge of the product tanker Palmetto State, returning from sea trials (credit: NASSCO)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


wide, with the extra deadweight in the larger vessel reflected in a slightly deeper draught. In its design notes, the yard reports that the MT-50 vessels incorporate a number of features that increase fuel efficiency compared to earlier tanker designs. They were constructed “with consideration for the use of LNG for propulsion in the future and are the first tankers to receive the ABS LNG-Ready Level 1 approval in principle,” its website notes. The first of this design was delivered in September 2015, two years after the final MT-46 product tanker had been delivered, to Crowley, in 2013. If the yard’s term sheet turns into new orders, a key difference from the MT-50 will be that their engines will meet IMO’s Tier III emission standard, rather than Tier II.

NASSCO gains from DSEC link

NASSCO has also built eight 50,000-dwt Jones Act product tankers. These, too, were LNG-ready and were dubbed the ECO Class. The final ship, Palmetto State, was delivered on 7 June 2017 at NASSCO’s San Diego yard to a longstanding customer, American Petroleum Tankers. Palmetto State and its sister ships “are the most environmentally friendly tankers to enter the Jones Act trade,” the yard said in a statement to mark its delivery. Compared with similar tankers, the ‘ECO’ design gives 33% better fuel efficiency and a corresponding reduction in ship emissions, it said. NASSCO is supported from the other side of the Pacific Ocean, where it partners with South Korean ship designer Daewoo Ship Engineering Co (DSEC), a subsidiary of Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) which provided the design for the ECO Class vessels. They achieve their improved fuel efficiency through several features, including a G-series MAN ME low-speed main engine and an optimised hullform, NASSCO’s website acknowledges. These ships are a very similar size to those built by Philly Shipyard, with a length of 186 m. Reflecting on the project last June, General Dynamics NASSCO president Kevin Graney said that the programme had “pushed us to develop more efficient planning and production techniques and fundamentally improved the way we perform every day.” NASSCO is the only major shipyard on the US west coast that

conducts design, construction and repair of both commercial and US Navy ships and in the past decade it has delivered more than 30 oceangoing ships to government and commercial customers. These include the world’s first LNG-powered container ships, built for TOTE; designed by DSEC, they included DSME’s patented LNG fuel-gas system and the world’s first order of a MAN ME-GI dualfuel low-speed engine.

Containers hold the future

It is in container shipbuilding where NASSCO’s immediate commercial future lies. In April, it began work on the second of two 3,500-TEU containerships for Matson, which are also to a DSEC design. These will include LNG-capable main and auxiliary engines and the ships are designed to allow for the future installation of an LNG fuel-gas system. But it also has its baseload of naval work, both construction and repair. As its website notes, it “specialises in the design and construction of auxiliary and support ships for the US Navy”, along with tankers and dry cargo carriers. It is also a major provider of repair services for the US Navy, with capabilities in San Diego, Norfolk, Mayport, and Bremerton. Philly Shipyard is also working for Matson. It named the first of two 260-m 3,600-TEU container ships on 30 June, with the second due in Q1 next year. These are each understood to be costing Matson US$236M. After these however, the yard’s orderbook is empty, prompting the local newspaper, The Enquirer, to comment in May that “ominous storm clouds are forming yet again over Philly Shipyard, the commercial shipbuilding operation in the Navy Yard that taxpayers have rescued twice in the last two decades.” In its Q2 report, Philly Shipyard noted that it is looking for work in new sectors, including specialised vessels such as fishing trawlers, cable layers and vessels to support the growing offshore wind industry. It is also working with Fincantieri Marine and Vard to bid for the US Coast Guard’s next-generation heavy polar icebreaker. Bids are due in Q4 2018 and the contract is expected to be awarded in Q3 2019, so the news in July of its term sheet for two tankers could not have come at a more important moment. MP

LEFT: Garden State was launched by NASSCO in May 2016 as the third of five product tankers for American Petroleum Tankers (credit: NASSCO) RIGHT: The bulbous bow for one of the Matson container ships on order at Philly Shipyard (credit: Philly Shipyard)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


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bulkers MARKET ANALYSIS | 29

Transporting huge quantities from Brazil to China is one of the mainstays of the Capesize trades

Dry bulk market fails to shake off the blues There seems little possibility of a sustained recovery in rates for the dry bulk market, with any reasonable periods inevitably followed by more dips in form


Capesize spot rates had crashed during the Christmas holiday season, and barely recovered as the new year began. The key West Australia to China rate dropped to US$5.30/tonne at the end of 2017, moved toward US$7.00/tonne in the first couple of weeks and then eased back to the upper US$6.00s/tonne. Timecharter rates hovered in the mid-US$20,000/day with

delivery east coast India. In the Atlantic Basin rates fared better: the Puerto Bolivar/ Rotterdam route registered a US$1 gain in 24 hours, hitting the mid US$11.00/tonne. A 175,800 dwt 2011-built Capesize that was open in northwest Europe was fixed on this run at US$25,000/day, while Vale covered a 16-25 January cargo from Ponta Da Madeira to Taranto on voyage basis, suggesting a timecharter equivalent of over US$30,000/day. The Chinese New Year in February drew another close on business, and any cautious optimism was eroded by the succession of holidays. In the Atlantic Basin standard Capesize were fixed by operators for around US$20,000/day, while spot rates were US$6.95 for cargo from Brazil to China. In the Pacific Basin, spot rates struggled to surpass US$6.2/tonne. An

Australian round trip to China reached US$10,000/day. The second quarter of 2018 startled the market with a perfect storm for the big ships: with holidays, force majeure in two ore exporting ports and bad weather undermining the market. A lack of significant activity from Brazil left the market one-sided, with owners/operators reluctant to ballast from the East and instead chasing the shorter rounds. The knock-on effect was that rates tumbled on the West Australia/China run. Some owners and operators refused to put their ships into such a weak market. Capesize heading back to Brazil saw rates fall sharply, with the Tubarao to China rate barely in the mid-US$12.00/tonne. By the middle of the year, rates in the Atlantic Basin had improved. It was reported that NYKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 176,000 dwt 2005built Lowlands Orchid had been fixed to load at Tubarao in July at US$19.75/ tonne to deliver a cargo of iron ore, while the 174,000 dwt 2005-built Ocean Confidence was due to load 15 to 24 July at US$19.80/tonne. In the Pacific Basin, mid-year iron ore movements from West Australia were being fixed at around US$7.20/tonne level, before dipping to US$6.75/tonne as June progresses mid-week. Oldendorff was reported to have Ming Wah tonnage at US$6.95/tonne for mid-July loading and

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

30 | MARKET ANALYSIS bulkers

the sentiment was suggesting US$7.00/ tonne might be breached again.


The year began slowly, with a portion of the market on extended holidays. In the Atlantic, rates improved for the fronthaul business, especially from the US Gulf, due to increased grain demand, with a 2010built 82,000 dwt vessel fixed from the Continent via the US Gulf and the Cape

of Good Hope to the east with grains at US$19,000/day. The Pacific had a far more sluggish beginning, the limited concluded trades showed weaker rates and early tonnage under pressure. Post-Chinese New Year business was slow in the Atlantic, with one Kamsarmax fixed at US$15,000/day, while spot rates for cargo from China to Brazil were reported at US$31.75/tonne. The activity in the Pacific Basin amounted to a steady flow

of cargoes out of Indonesia. Two modern Kamsarmaxes achieved low-mid US$13,000/ day for Australian rounds, but similar units still discounted for positional trips to India, which fixed at under US$11,000/day in preparation for the second quarter east coast South American market. The Easter holidays disrupted the flow of business and Panamax dry bulk carriers available to load were staking up the Atlantic Basin. Some owners fixed anyway, chasing rates downhill. In the Pacific Basin, owners struggled with a lack of mineral cargoes blamed for falling rates, with the prevailing uncertainty deterring some owners from ballasting. It was reported a modern Kamsarmax fixture failed at US$14,000/day for a North Pacific round voyage only to be re-fixed a few days later at US$12,000/day on the same route. The mid-year Panamax market seemed to consolidate. The Atlantic Basin saw more enquiry in the North for both front haul and trans-Atlantic trades, which led to a clear out of tonnage, with rates stabilising and in some cases showing improvement. EC America was again very active and consumed a lot of vessel moving in ballast back to the area. However, a weak Ultramax market has seen them take a few smaller stems, with an end-July cargo from Paranagua to China fixed at US$35.25/tonne.


After the Christmas holidays it was a slow start, with activity slowly increasing without specific direction. The Atlantic Basin was generally quiet with rates from the US Gulf remaining flat and little fresh enquiry from east coast South America, with owners struggling to fix at last done. Over the festive period a 58,000-dwt was reported fixed basis delivery Gibraltar via US Gulf to China at US$14,000/day. In the Pacific Basin, there was little reported on the period front, although a 58,000-dwt unit was fixed basis delivery north China prompt for three to five months trading, redelivery worldwide at US$9,500/day. As March approached a 58,700 dwt Supramax was reported to have been fixed from the US Gulf on the basis of delivery to Houston for a trip to the Mediterranean, with a cargo of petcoke at US$19,000/day. This was seen at the time as representing a static rate, not increasing or falling. In the Far East more activity was reported, an example being a 56,000-dwt Supramax fixed on the basis of delivery to Kaohsiung 5 to 10 March for a trip via Philippines, with redelivery China

bulkers MARKET ANALYSIS | 31

with a cargo of nickel ore at $13,000/day. Supramax business was weak in the second quarter. In the Atlantic, rates agreed were lower, but an East Coast South America to China voyage was fixed in the upper US$15,000s/day plus a US$575,000 ballast bonus. In the Pacific, a 56,000-dwt Supramax was reported fixed delivery from Prai via Indonesia with redelivery South East Asia, at a weaker US$12,250/day. Mid-year was gloomy for the Supramax fleet. In the Atlantic, pressure remained on rates, especially from the Eastern Mediterranean, with a ready supply of tonnage. An Ultramax was reported fixed at under US$16,000/day from the Eastern Mediterranean to the Far East. A 53,000-dwt unit was reported to have been fixed for delivery Antwerp for a trip East Mediterranean at US$11,900/day. In the Pacific Basin, the market also lacked impetus. A 58,000-dwt vessel was rumoured fixed basis delivery Dalian for a North Pacific round trip with redelivery to Cebu at $11,350/day. Further south, a 56,000dwt vessel was fixed on the basis of delivery to Singapore on a trip via Indonesia, with redelivery to China at US$12,100/day.

Morocco at US$10,000/day. Mid-year in the Handysize market was not particularly exciting. Most of the routes slipped in both the Atlantic and Pacific basins. On the period front, a 2018-built Handysize was fixed in early July for the balance of period for about five to seven months at a rate in the US$11,000s/day. In the Mediterranean and the Black Sea area, a 31,000-dwt Handysize that was open at Canakkale was failed to fix for a trip via

the Black Sea to the US Gulf at US$7,500/ day for the first 40 days and US$8,500/day thereafter. The same vessel then later failed to fix again for a similar run at US$7,750/ day and US$8,850/day, respectively. The failure to fix at the higher rates suggest the owner was expecting rates to increase later in 2018. MP Note: dry bulk market rates and activity as reported in the Baltic Briefings



It was a difficult start to 2018 in the Handy sector, with negative sentiment across most routes. A 33,000-dwt open east Mediterranean was fixed for two to three laden legs with various Atlantic redelivery ranges, but no further details were known. The Asian markets saw a little more activity; a 28,800-dwt Imabari-built vessel was reported fixed basis delivery Singapore for a trip via west Australia redelivery Singapore-Japan at an easier $7,000/day. March rates for Handysize from the US Gulf stayed positive, while the east coast South America market slipped. The Pacific market showed strong improvement and rates moved sharply higher for both larger and smaller handy vessels delivery in the Far East as well as Southeast Asia. The second quarter of 2018 opened weaker with rates from the US Gulf easing, while some larger handy vessels were reportedly competing with Supramax stems in east coast South America. On the period front, a 45,000-dwt open Vietnam was booked for five to seven months at US$11,500/day redelivery worldwide. In the Atlantic Basin, a 35,000 dwt unit was fixed to ARA-Ghent range at US$10,400/ day, with delivery in the Black Sea. A 28,000-dwt vessel was booked on the same delivery basis for moving sulphur to

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bulkers MARKET ANALYSIS | 33

Sale and purchase activity in the dry bulk sector The first half of 2018 has been relatively benign for the dry bulk sector and new legislation from China may compound the situation further


he Capesize fleet currently stands at 1,774 vessels with a combined capacity of 364M dwt, according to VesselsValue. The boom in ordering from 2004 onwards saw Capesize still being delivered long after the favourable market had dissipated; consequently, the average age of the fleet is young at seven years. The Capesize fleet witnessed less robust scrapping in the first six months of 2018 (nine vessels) compared to the same period the year before (19). H Line of South Korea sold three Capesize in January, HL Port Kembla, I Spirit, and Innova, for scrapping. All three vessels were built in South Korea in 1993, but only one had a reported price – US$492/ldt. There were two other South Korean sales in the period. Sinokor Merchant Marine sold the 1995-built Chokang Surprise for US$480/ ltd in February. Korea Shipping sold what must have been one of the last 149,500-dwt CSBC Keelung-built Capesize, Boryeong, for US$439.5/ldt, the price reflecting the smaller size. Indeed, according to VesselsValue, Korea Shipping controls the last two smaller Capesize built in Taiwan, the 1994-built Danjin Friendship and the 1995-built Danjin. Taiwan had been a prolific builder of the size of Capesize, and in the 1990s, this size formed the majority of the Capesize fleet. Another standout sale for scrapping was the 1994-built Kiran, which was built in Poland at Stocznia Gdynia. It is believed Kiran may be the last of the Capesize built in Poland, although not the last built in Europe. There are still 10 Capesize in the water that were built in Romania at the Daewoo-Mangalia shipyard, the last of which was built in 2016. Of course, there are also the more famous six Capesize built between 2009 and 2010 in AP Moller’s own shipyard, Odense Steel, before it closed. Today the yard is an industrial park, specialising in the production of offshore wind turbines. C’est la vie, say the old folks. The average age of the nine Capesize sold for scrap in the first six months of 2018 was 24 years old, with the youngest just 21 years old. However, age is only one factor in the decision to scrap a vessel. A bigger factor is the cost to maintain trading, which hinges on the next Special Survey (SS). Not only is drydocking a major expense, but there is the loss of earnings and the cost of any steel repairs, not to mention upgrades like ballast water

Odense Steel Shipyard: Gone, but not forgotten

management systems and scrubbers (depending on the owner’s options for the 2020 Sulphur Cap). The nine scrapped Capesize vessels had SS dates falling between two months and 39 months. Dismissing the outlier 39 months gives a range of two to 24 months. Analysis of VesselsValue data suggests there are currently 21 Capesize that are 21 years or older with SS dates falling up to 24 months after the end of June 2020. Two-thirds of these vessels are currently sailing with South Korean companies, and these have been the most prolific in disposing of elderly Capesize. However, the Indian sub-continent markets will be entering the mid-summer slump with decreasing demand and struggling local fundamentals, leaving cash buyers with tonnage in hand, unable to offload their inventory at anywhere near breakeven levels. After the monsoon season has drawn to a close and the scrapyards have drawn down their inventory, the market will pick up again. As Marine Propulsion went to press, cash buyer GMS reported that the VLOC Ore Vitoria (26,695 ldt) fetched a very firm US$440/ldt basis for an onward sale to a RINA-approved green recycling facility in Bangladesh, for strictly Hong Kong conventionstyle recycling.

Capesize fleet additions

The deletion of nine Capesize vessels from the fleet was more than made up for by the 29 Capesize (including six VLOCs) that entered the fleet in the first six months of 2018. According to VesselsValue,

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

34 | MARKET ANALYSIS bulkers

another 20 Capesize are due for delivery in 2018. On top of this, contracting was brisk in the first three months of 2018, with 32 Capesize contracts placed (including one Valemax), although just two orders were placed between April and June 2018.

Capesize sale and purchase activity

There was a considerable amount of sale and purchase activity in the Capesize sector in the first six months of 2018. The largest single sale was the JP Morgan Global Maritime sale of five Capesize to prospective IPO company GoodBulk. JP Morgan Global had bought at a low point in the cycle and nominally made a tidy profit, cost of carry and trading notwithstanding. JP Morgan Global Maritime was set up to speculate on the low historic values of ships, and seems to have achieved its goal with the sale of these Capesize vessels. The buyer, GoodBulk, also purchased a sixth Capesize, Ocean Commander, from Miyazaki Sangyo Kisen in April 2018 for US$21.5M. The purpose of the purchases was to boost the GoodBulk fleet to a credible 22 Capesize vessels (plus another three smaller units) and to launch GoodBulk as a counter-cyclical dry bulk shipping story in New York on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. The IPO was timed to launch in early July 2018, with the aim of raising US$150M, a modest amount for an IPO, but a large amount to raise from investors still wary of shipping. Indeed, no shipping company IPO has taken place for three years. The chief executive and sponsor of Bermuda-registered GoodBulk is John Michael Radziwill, whose private shipping company, C Transport Maritime of Monaco, will provide commercial and technical management. Mr Radziwill must have been surprised to learn that the day before the GoodBulk IPO, the lead bank Morgan Stanley (no direct connection with the aforementioned JP Morgan), had taken another dry bulk shipping deal to prospective investors. Given the small pool of potential investors in dry bulk shipping at any one time, this strange move by Morgan Stanley effectively sucked dry the dry bulk investment pond and Mr Radziwill had no choice but to postpone the GoodBulk IPO.

Panamax dry bulk carriers

The Panamax dry bulk carrier sector (50,000 dwt to 99,999 dwt) is nominally the most popular dry bulk sector. According to VesselsValue, the current Panamax fleet numbers 2,064 vessels with a total capacity of 161M dwt. The average age of the fleet is only nine years old. For such a large fleet, the number of sales for scrapping in

“As the lead banker for both deals, Morgan Stanley’s action before the day of the IPO was impolite, to say the least”

the first half of 2018 was extremely small, at just two vessels. The youngest was the 1992-built Rin, which was sold for US$450/ldt. The other was the 1982-built Krakow, which fetched US$425/ldt. Sales for further trading were far more numerous, at 70 vessels. Interestingly, one of the groups of sales was indirectly linked to the GoodBulk purchases above. This was the 10 Panamax dry bulk carriers sold by Songa Bulk ASA to Star Bulk Carriers. Star Bulk Carriers is a US-listed company formed by legendary Greek shipowner Petros Pappas. The company purchased 15 operating dry bulk vessels from Songa Bulk ASA for an aggregate of 13.725M common shares of Star Bulk and US$145M in cash. The chief executive of Songa Bulk ASA, Arne Blystad was appointed to the board of directors of Star Bulk as class C rirector and Herman Billung, also ex-Songa Bulk ASA, joined the management team of Star Bulk as senior vice president. A secondary listing of shares in Star Bulk on Oslo Børs is expected to take place soon, but it was Morgan Stanley’s agreement to underwrite Oaktree Capital Management’s sale of shares in Star Bulk that interfered with the aforementioned GoodBulk IPO. By underwriting the Star Bulk share offering, Morgan Stanley absorbed the investor pool for both GoodBulk and Star Bulk. As the lead banker for both, this action before the day of the IPO was impolite, to say the least. The other major sale in the period was the fleet-replenishment exercise by George Economou’s Dryships. Another Greek-led New York-listed company, Dryships sold six Panamax dry bulk carriers to mainly Chinese investors. George Economou publicly stated that he wished to sell off dry bulk carriers over 15-years old and found willing buyers in China. However, Chinese authorities are said to be imposing a ban on the import of non-Tier II vessels. This would effectively limit second-hand sales from foreign owners to Chinese owners to those vessels built after 2011. This would rule out the sale of 11 of the 12 remaining Panamax dry bulk carriers in the Dryships fleet, unless this could be accomplished before the introduction of the ban. MP

Stocznia Gdynia: Where Kiran was built in 1994, and possibly where the last Capesize was built in Poland

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Technology and the environment take centre stage at this year‘s SMM T

he biennial SMM conference, organised by Hamburg Messe und Congress, is one of the highlights of the maritime calendar. With more than 50,000 visitors from more than 120 countries and 2,200 exhibitors from 66 countries expected to attend, the issues discussed will have repercussions far beyond the conference itself. The motto for this year’s SMM is 'trends in smart shipping' and technology will be a key theme. Hamburg Messe und Congress president and chief executive Bernd Aufderheide, speaking at the advance press conference in May, drew attention to what he described as “the mega-topic of 3D printing” which SMM, in co-operation with the North German Maritime Cluster, will present a special exhibition on. He also noted that deepsea mining and polar research will be given special attention in the offshore area. “The green topic is one of our top priorities,” said Mr Aufderheide, noting that SMM has been hosting the Global Maritime Environmental Congress

The 28th SMM conference is nearly upon us. Ed Martin attended an advance press conference to get the lowdown on what attendees can expect

(GMEC) conference since 2010 and now has an entire hall devoted to the topic of green propulsion. Discussing the offshore element of the conference, Mr Aufderheide said that this year the relationship with the Arctic and polar region would come under focus and he also stressed the importance of wind energy. “Offshore is a very important topic when it comes to wind energy” he said, noting the WindEnergy Hamburg exhibition, which will take place three weeks after SMM, from 25-28 September,

Attendees included, L-R: Wayne Jones, MAN Energy Solutions; Dr Martin Stopford, Clarksons Research; Anthony J. Firmin, Hapag-Lloyd, Kjersti Kleven, Kleven Maritime; Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, DNV GL; Bernd Aufderheide, Hamburg Messe und Congress (credit: Hamburg Messe und Congress)

with 60 companies exhibiting both at SMM and WindEnergy. Joining Mr Aufderheide at the advance press conference were Hapag-Lloyd chief operating officer Anthony J. Firmin, MAN Energy Solutions executive board member Wayne Jones, Kleven Maritime co-owner and board member Kjersti Kleven, DNV GL chief executive Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen and Clarkson Research non-executive president Martin Stopford. Mr Aufderheide said IMO secretarygeneral Kitack Lim would be speaking at the opening event on Monday 3 September and that he would be joined by “very interesting people from the political field”, without elaborating. Several conferences will take place around the main trade fair, kicking off with the Maritime Future Summit on 3 September, a shipowners’ forum on the 4th, GMEC on the 5th, Offshore Dialogue on the 6th and MS&D, the international conference on maritime security and defence, on the 6th and 7th. To guide visitors to areas of specific interest, SMM has set up several 'theme routes' covering security, green, digital, job and cruise- and ferry-related exhibits at the trade fair. This year’s Maritime Future Summit on Monday 3rd September is titled “Mind the Gap - Bridging Disruptive Technologies.” Mediterranean Shipping Company Germany’s CIO Hubert Hoffman will give the keynote speech, providing a liner company’s view on “new thinking in shipping.” The morning panel will cover sea traffic management, autonomous shipping and an East Asian perspective on the technology roadmap to 2020. It will feature the China Classification Society’s working group on intelligent shipping deputy general manager Wu Sun, the Swedish Maritime Administration’s communications officer

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


The motto for this year’s SMM is ‘trends in smart shipping‘ (credit: Hamburg Messe und Congress)

Ulfe Siwe, and the National Maritime Research Institute of Japan project director of R&D Kohei Matsuo. The afternoon panel will address the future of global transport systems and logistics, disruptive markets, digital twins and artificial intelligence, with contributors including the World Maritime University’s Volker Betram, DNV GL director of maritime technology Pierre Sames, and ABB Marine and Ports director of software and automation operations Mikko Lepistö, among others. Taking place on Wednesday 5 September, GMEC’s topic this year is “Compliance Control - Champions” and IMO’s Marine Environment Division acting deputy director for protective measures Tian Bing Huang will give the keynote. The first panel will cover ballast water management and contributors joining Mr Huang will include US Coast Guard Office of Environmental and Operating Standards commandant Capt Sean T. Brady, Choice Ballast Systems senior compliance engineer Debra DiCianna and ABS director of business development Stamatis Fradelos. The second panel will address how to deal with future environmental challenges through greenhouse gas strategy and

emissions control, with panellists including Lloyd’s Register global sustainability manager Katharine Palmer, DNV GL Maritime business director for container ships Jen-Olaf Probst and Wärtsilä Marine Solutions general manager for market innovation Teus van Beek. The third panel will look at the passenger shipping sector as an environmental pioneer, with contributors including The Fjords chief executive Rolf Andrè Sandvik, MSC Group executive vice-president for maritime policy and government affairs Bud Darr and MAN Energy Solutions head of four-stroke marine Lex Nijsen. MS&D will take place on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 September and this year is titled “Preparing for Future Challenges”; the keynote speaker is Rear Admiral (Upper Half ) Thorsten Kaehler, chief of staff of the German Navy. Panels across the two days of the conference will address matters such as regional maritime security and global warming as it relates to security, littoral operations and harbour protection, cyber security, technological co-operation, new technologies and unmanned systems. Offshore Dialogue is focused on “Pushing the Limits – New Maritime

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Technologies for Future Needs.” The first panel will address the balance between use and conservation of the ocean and will comprise flash talks with contributors including Rolls-Royce Marine vicepresident of design and hydro Einar Vegsund, Jacobs University Bremen’s Andre Koschinsky and DEME Blue Energy general manager Joury Van Gijseghem. The second panel will cover the Arctic and will again take the form of flash talks, with contributors including Norway’s Arctic Economic Council director Anu Frederikson, IMO’s Maritime Safety Division head of marine technology and goal-based standards Sandra Allnutt, and Hamburg Ship Model Basin head of the Arctic technology department Nils Reimer. Looking at the other events surrounding SMM, the shipowners’ forum on 4 September will hold sessions titled “Germany’s New Dawn” and “Global Ambition”. There will be MariMatch networking events on the mornings of Thursday 6 and Friday 7 September and the Maritime Career Market will feature talks on issues such as WISTA, the organisation for women in the maritime sector; XING and LinkedIn profiles; and technical studies in the maritime industry. MP

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E-MS provides power supply and propulsion design for Chinese research vessel Hamburg’s E-Powered Marine Solutions (E-MS) has completed its first project in the Chinese market by jointly providing design and engineering work for research vessel Shen Kuo. In co-operation with Chinese project partner SFHI, E-MS carried out all electrical design and engineering work for small waterplane area twin-hull vessel Shen Kuo’s diesel-electric power supply and propulsion system. The research vessel mounts four diesel generators, powering two permanently excited electric motors that have a capacity of 1,000 kW apiece. E-MS says its patented electric power pack (E-PP) network and propulsion technology allows for higher-precision control of electrical energy than conventional onboard supply networks provide. “We can operate the generators with variable speed and use the entire speed range of diesel engines,” said E-MS chief executive Peter Andersen. “This not only reduces fuel consumption, but also pollutant emissions and structure-borne vibrations, especially in the case of electrical outputs with

Selected SMM product launches E-MS is to launch a Remote Diagnostics (E-RD) system. Use cases for the modular E-RD system include providing remote diagnostics, on-condition maintenance, fault prognosis and operating-state monitoring. Premet X, a performance indicator that monitors dynamic pressure in the combustion chamber of a diesel engine at the indicator valves, will be presented by CM Technologies. The device allows optimisation of fuel injection. EMRI will showcase its IMJ11 joystick panel. The standardised design can be customised from a long list of options including different steering modules such as tillers, miniwheels and joysticks. An E1-shaft option is available, as are indoor and outdoor versions.

Twin-hulled research vessel Shen Kuo is under construction at Zhejiang Shipbuilding Tianshi

marked dynamic fluctuations.” Mr Andersen also noted that the electrical propulsion power supply used aboard Shen Kuo has been tested aboard river cruise vessels and megayachts. The E-PP saves about 11 m2 and nearly 12 tonnes compared to conventional diesel-electric systems, E-MS says. The scope of work covered by E-MS and SFHI included producing electrical and mechanical plans and 3D design drawings for all technology in the power generation and distribution systems aboard the vessel, as well as the electrical aspects of the vessels’ two main propulsion systems. The shipyard and client then used these designs to order the equipment directly from SFHI. Shen Kuo is currently under construction at Zhejiang Shipbuilding Tianshi’s shipyard for a consortium comprising two Chinese firms, Tehe Ocean Technology Group and Shanghai Rainbow Fish Ocean Technology. The vessel measures 64.2 m in length, 22.6 m in width and has a draught of 5.7 m. Its displacement is 2.06 tonnes.

Steel fabricator Landon Engineering acquired by industrial services firm Landon Engineering, a Staffordshire, UK-based heavy steel fabricator, has been acquired by industrial services group DMI Global. DMI Global comprises several medium-sized companies, each with their own management structure, which answer to a single board of directors headquartered in Newcastle-uponTyne, UK. The group services many sectors but its roots lie in the marine sector. It has a

worldwide network of reconditioning stations for large-bore ship engine components and holds stock of exchange piston crowns, cylinder covers, exhaust valves and other components at strategic locations around the world. Landon Engineering will join DMI UK, DMI Marine, DMI Young and Cunningham, Applied Cooling technology, Highland Electroplaters and DMI under the group’s umbrella. MP

IMES to launch improved engine analyser IMES GmbH, a German cylinder pressure sensor and combustion monitoring system firm, is to launch a new engine analyser in time for SMM. The EPM-XP PLUS, for two- and four-stroke engines, is a development of the firm’s EPMXP device, with additions such as specific combustion analysis for better engine diagnosis functionality. It has an improved battery capacity of up to 20 operating hours and can send data directly to visualisation software on PCs within 50 m via USB/ethernet connection. The visualisation software shows cylinder pressure sequences, and stored data can be used for offline analysis to identify abnormal combustion behaviour. By acting on the data, optimised engine operation with reduced fuel consumption (and consequently lower emissions) and maintenance can be achieved.

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Turning cargo into fuel – MAN’s ME-LGIP Mark 9.5 MAN Energy Solutions‘ latest gas-powered engine, designed with LPG carriers in mind, enables the vessels to ‘eat-their-own cargo’ in pursuit of the bottom line, writes Selwyn Parker

T The ME-GI is one of the pioneers of gas-powered vessels

Hanjin’s first LPG-powered carriers The LPG-powered sister ships are being built in Subic Bay by Hanjin Heavy Industries, a specialist in the construction of gas carriers since the mid-1990s, when it launched Asia’s first membrane-type LNG carrier, the Hanjin Pyeongtaek. However, the two vessels will be the first LPG-powered gas carriers to take shape at the yard. To optimise the performance of gas-powered engines, Hanjin prides itself on designing wave-friendly, robust hulls. “Our LNG carriers boast a hull structure highly resistant to external shocks, with minimal vibration as well as a sturdy cargo-containment system,” the company explained on its website. “[They] can carry the largest loads and deliver the highest speed and fuel efficiency in their respective classes.” MAN’s ME-LGIP engines are scheduled to be delivered to Subic Bay for installation in December 2019.

wo pioneering vessels will be launched into Subic Bay in the Philippines in the third quarter of 2020 (see box, left). Both are very large gas carriers chartered to Statoil and these 80,000 m3 giants will be the first ships to use MAN Energy Solutions’ LPG-powered two-stroke engine, the ME-LGIP Mark 9.5. What makes these vessels – or rather their powerplants – so unusual is that the engines, which use the vessels’ LPG cargo as fuel, will be the first to valorise LPG as a marine fuel, according to Exmar, a specialist in gas-powered vessels that developed the contracts. The ME-LGIP (the ‘P’ stands for propane) engine, which is being manufactured by Hyundai under licence to MAN, will join MAN’s growing list of gas-powered engines that source their juice from the vessel’s payload. It is a cost-saving and convenience-lending measure that is being widely adopted in an increasingly competitive market. Even for specialist vessels such as very large gas carriers, operators are looking for every possible bottom-line benefit. And in what might be called the greenengine sector, operators are attracting

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


ever more encouragement in the form of rebates from port authorities determined to cut pollution.

High hopes


Although the engine is not yet out of the shop, MAN has high hopes for the ME-LGIP. According to vice-president of sales and promotion Bjarne Foldager, there is mounting interest in the ‘eatyour-own cargo’ concept, even outside the

LPG-carrier sector. “Interest in using LPG as a fuel is growing due to its sulphurfree character, free availability and ease of bunkering,” he explained. As such, MAN expects demand to come from several sectors of the merchant fleet, such as coastal vessels. Alongside the green credentials, the bottom-line benefits are also attractive. MAN claims that the installation of the ME-LGIP units aboard merchant vessels will be

“extremely competitive price-wise compared to other dual-fuel-burning engine types”. But for an LPG-powered unit, the bulk carrier market is a good place to start. In terms of deadweight tonnage, bulk carriers represent about 43% of the world fleet. And most importantly for engine designers, they require power units that are reliable, efficient and low maintenance. As IMO’s Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI ), mandating the level of CO2 emissions, starts to bite, operators are increasingly specifying engines that run at lower rpms, marrying this with a trend towards large, slowerspinning propellers.

“LPG carrier operators called [on us] to develop an LPG-fuelled engine that could power [ships] in the most viable, convenient and economical way, using a fraction of the cargo on board” The EEDI values are fundamental to the type of engine chosen. The index encompasses several parameters: maximum cargo-carrying capacity; propulsion power; ship speed; a formula called Special Fuel Oil Consumption (SFOC); and fuel type, LPG in the case of the bulk carriers. But, and herein lies the rub, the index gets tougher for newbuilds. For example, a ship whose construction is contracted after 1 January 2025 must have an EEDI 30% lower than one contracted in 2013. For some operators, it all comes down to a simple equation: the lowest possible amount of propulsion power consumed per tonne bulk transported. As MAN noted in a technical paper titled Propulsion trends in bulk carriers: “In general, the highest possible propulsive efficiency required to provide a given ship speed is obtained with the largest possible propeller diameter, in combination with the corresponding optimum pitch diameter.” So the type of propeller significantly influences the choice of engine.

Customer pressure

From MAN’s viewpoint, this engine was born from customer pressure. As emissions


standards tighten, operators urged MAN to come up with an engine that could draw its fuel from LPG cargo: “Due to ever more stringent emission limits, many LPG carrier operators called [on us] to develop an LPG-fuelled engine that could power [ships] in the most viable, convenient and economical way, using a fraction of the cargo already on board,” said Mr Foldager. And LPG certainly meets today’s requirements. As Exmar explained, LPG does not contain any sulphur, substantially reducing CO2 and NOx emissions, while particulate emissions are almost halved compared with a normally-fuelled engine. Also, in recent years the shore-side infrastructure required to facilitate this transition has improved substantially. More ports have recognised the virtues of LPG and invested in bunkering facilities and as MAN pointed out: “LPG’s future as a viable fuel for general marine transportation looks promising as it will not require as large an investment in infrastructure, such as bunkering facilities, in contrast to other gaseous fuels.”

was the Qatari-owned Q-Max, a 266,000 m3 LNG carrier that had been burning HFO. The installation on the five-year-old ship was completed in late 2015 and the retrofit triggered immediate interest – MAN’s orderbook for the ME-GI jumped to 140. In tandem with the release of the engine, fuel prices were rising and, encouraged by the favourable reaction to the ME-GI, MAN introduced1 the 4_Container_W124xH190_EN_SMM.pdf 2018/07/02 ME-LGI around the same time. That

powerplant further extended MAN’s dualfuel range. Now the engines could run on more than one low-flashpoint liquid fuel. Then, in 2016, MAN brought out the methanol-powered ME-LGIM that has been installed in a number of methanol carriers, most of them around 50,000 dwt. Finally, with orders for LPG tankers on the rise, stimulated by improving port infrastructure, it made sense to extend 17:25:15 the range even further, to embrace the

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Low-flashpoint fuels

The ME-LGIP developed out of the group’s earlier ME-GI concept, developed for two-stroke, low-speed engines designed to run on low-flashpoint fuels such as ethanol, dimethyl ether (DME) and gasoline. And MAN already knew a lot about LPG, having worked with theCgas since the 1990s. M The first model off the assembly line Y for gas-powered engines was the dualfuel, gas-injection ME-GI. It used CM the high-pressure gas injection systems that MY operators demand for low-speed engines. The ME-GI also took the dual-fuelCY option a step further, addressing issues CMY that had affected other dual-fuel engines, K such as multiple deratings, fuel-quality adjustments and issues with methane slip. Immediately successful, the engine opened up a healthy market for ships that could operate on LNG as well as on heavy fuel oil (HFO). The first low-speed vessel to be retro-fitted with the ME-GI engine

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The Port of Gothenburg provides discounts for green engines

gas as a source of fuel for the vessel itself, reflecting what MAN had already done for the methanol-carrying fleet. Operators had also come to realise that LPG-powered engines could reduce time in port. “With a viable, convenient and comparatively cheap fuel already on board, it makes sense to save time for bunkering by using a fraction of the cargo to power the vessel,” MAN explained. And, of course, there were the environmental benefits that ports are increasingly demanding, under pressure from local authorities.

Further development

As development continues, MAN expects the ME-LGIP to soon operate on 3% pilot oil and down to 10% load. In time, engineers predict the powerplant will not require pilot oil at all. In a far-sighted paper entitled A technical, operational and cost-effective solution for ships fuelled by gas, released around the same time that the ME-GI engine was unveiled, MAN’s engineers anticipated the upcoming revolution in fuel. “The recent trend [towards alternative fuels] indicates that gas applications will be installed not only on LNG carriers but also on LPG carriers, roro, tankers and container vessels – that is, in principle all types of vessels,” the authors predicted. And as interest in the ME-LGIP shows, they were right. MP

Discounts for good behaviour Gas-powered vessels are beginning to attract fat rebates from green-minded ports. In July, the Port of Gothenburg in western Sweden decided to extend until 2020 what had started out as a more or less experimental system of “environmental discounts” for clean-engined ships, and especially LNG-driven ones. With its impeccable credentials, MAN’s LPG engine would clearly qualify for such a rebate. Under the current scheme, which was designed to boost the number of calls by shipping running on LNG, vessels that report good environmental performance receive a 10% discount on the port tariff (a “good” performance means they comply with globally recognised indexes such as ESI and CSI). But LNG-powered vessels do even better, attracting discounts of 20% every time they call. “A catalyst was necessary to break the deadlock,” explained the port’s environmental manager Edvard Molitor. The deadlock he described concerned the reluctance of (mainly) Swedish shipping companies to switch to LNG because there was no way of

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

bunking the gas at the port while the bunkering companies were unwilling to supply LNG without a market. “The energy discount has been a strong contributing factor behind many players choosing to follow the LNG route,” added Mr Molitor. “It took time before it really took off, but today these operators are at the LNG forefront at the port.” The statistics illustrate the success of the port’s initiative. In 2015, before the discount was introduced, there were no visits by LNG-powered ships. In 2016, there were 16. In 2017, there were 111. And for the full year 2018, the port is expecting a total of 135. It is good news for MAN’s new engine, as well as other clean powerplants, that the 20% LNG discount period will run through 2019 before falling to 10% in 2020. Thereafter, the scheme will change to embrace any ship that meets the environmental criteria, rather than just those powered by LNG. But, with LPG being at least as clean a fuel, the prospects are promising for units such as the ME-LGIP as other ports follow suit.


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The future-proofed engine The times are indeed a-changing for the conventional two-stroke engine, which is being developed into an environmentally friendly power unit for post-2020 use, writes Selwyn Parker


Snapshot CV

John Olav Lindtjorn (ABB)

John Olav Lindtjorn specialises in energy efficiency, including energy storage, at ABB. He joined the group in 2006 and was one of the team that developed the Onboard DC Grid. Holding a Master of Science in electrical and electronics engineering from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, he has an important role in ABB’s research and development projects.

ith the 2020 emissions deadline hanging over the industry like an ominous (albeit clean) black cloud, engine manufacturers are unveiling increasingly advanced and ingenious solutions to make their power units cleaner and greener before it is too late. ABB for example, now offers a direct current-based power energy management system (PEMS) designed specifically for new and alternative energy sources. The directcurrent technology will be widely adopted in two- and four-stroke engines alike because PEMS facilitates rock-bottom fuel consumption with minimum wear and tear. Unlike standard alternative-current systems, direct current allows the generators to run at variable speeds. “This [system] contrasts with traditional alternative-current systems, where generators run at a fixed maximum speed irrespective of the power demand on board,” explained ABB global product manager for Onboard DC Grid in the marine and ports division John Olav Lindtjorn. “This leads to excessive engine wear and poor fuel efficiency at lower loads,” he added. Not to be outdone, MAN Energy Solutions has started delivering the first of its latest emissionsreducing technology for two-stroke engines, a high-pressure system built around honeycombs. Officially described as a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system, the technology was unveiled in Japan early last year for sale in early 2018. Available for two-strokes of all bore sizes, it cuts back NOx emissions to IMO Tier III limits. Originally developed for four-strokes, the system has been reduced dramatically in size for the smaller power unit. According to MAN vice-president and head of engine design Gunnar Stiesch, the technology works by providing more bang per buck. “The reactor design has been driven by the desire to reduce the SCR system’s overall size while still maintaining the effectiveness of a much larger

design,” he explained. The cornerstones of its development were the honeycomb and the reactor concept. MAN predicts “remarkable cost reductions” from the technology, which covers engines up to 25 MW. These savings would come in the form of the much simpler and faster Scheme B engine-approval process. Already well established in four-stroke engines, the Scheme B process eliminates several steps in certification because the engine is run on a test bed in a way that meets the IMO Tier III mode. The MAN SCR-CP (CP standing for controllable pitch), as it has been christened, puts another NOx reduction technology on the shelf for two-strokes, sitting neatly alongside MAN’s system for exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). Unlike the SCR, which cleans emissions up after the combustion process, EGR does so by controlling them from inside the engine during combustion.

The digital age is overtaking engine technology across the global marine fleet Elsewhere, two offshore-loading shuttle tankers will be launched in 2019 with a full suite of ABB’s specialist marine technology. As well as deploying PEMS, these two-stroke 125,000dwt vessels, currently under construction at Samsung Heavy Industries, will also feature a power distribution system called the Onboard DC Grid; this can be configured for new energy sources, such as fuel cells. The performance of the shuttle tankers’ twin engines will be monitored by ABB’s remote diagnostic system. ABB claims handsome savings from the system, saying it “will reduce by up to 70% the number of on-call visits by service engineers and [reduce] maintenance costs by up to 50%”.

Configurable two-strokes

ABB said it is a firm believer in highly configurable, DC-based two-strokes. “These tankers will be future-proofed for technology

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


and regulations for years to come,” pointed out ABB managing director for marine and ports Juha Koskela when the shuttle tankers contract was announced in March. With a working life of at least 30 years ahead of them in the North Sea, these vessels have been designed with the notion of energy transition in mind. “It is clear that the next generation of ships – electrical, digital and connected – spells a bright future for DC-based electric propulsion,” said Mr Lindtjorn. As he explained in a recent technical paper titled Onboard DC Grid – a system platform at the heart of Shipping 4.0, the virtue of DC-based power systems lies in their simplicity, flexibility and functional integration of all energy sources, including variable-speed gensets, shaft generators, batteries and fuel cells. “A DC and power-electronics-based power system provides a unique platform for digital solutions on board a vessel,” Mr Lindtjorn said. “Equipped with sensors and communication infrastructure, data is transmitted between systems in an instant.” In short, the digital age is overtaking engine technology across the global marine fleet. ABB’s own direct-current solution – the DC Grid – is being installed in a wide variety of vessels, such as the HH Ferries-owned Aurora and Tycho Brahe, which were recently converted from alternative-current systems. DC Grid is also entering service on offshore support vessels, icebreakers, shuttle tankers and, imminently, expedition vessels. The PEMS system is shaping up to be an integral component of future-proofed twostrokes. The technology not only manages the balance of power, which is the traditional job of PEMS, it also controls the energy in the

power system. As Mr Lindtjorn noted: “The latter becomes important when adding sources like batteries or super capacitators, with very finite amounts of energy available.” In the US, where the price of global maritime pollution is estimated at US$330Bn, conventional engines may soon be a thing of the past. Next year, passengers will step aboard America’s first hydrogen fuel cell-powered ferry. In late June, the Californian government handed a US$3M grant to a group called the Golden Gate Zero Emission Marine to build the Water-Go-Round, an Incat Crowther-designed, 21 m aluminium catamaran that will be powered by two 300 kW electric motors using independent electric drive trains manufactured by BAE Systems. Still experimental, the Water-Go-Round is due to start service in 2019. Meanwhile, heavyweight research is being conducted on fuel cell-driven power systems. In June, Canada’s Ballard Power Systems and ABB signed an agreement to develop the next generation of fuel cells in a joint endeavour to help the marine industry clean up its emissions. As the companies explained in a release, current fuel-cell technologies are only on a kW scale; their goal is to “pioneer MW-scale solutions suitable for powering larger ships”. They are aiming for a 3 MW capacity, equal to 4,000 horsepower, but no bigger in physical size than a conventional marine engine. This is not wishful thinking; Ballard Power Systems has already built MW-scale, containerised systems for land-based use. Passenger ships will be the first recipients of these marine versions and since fuel-cell power is combustion-free, they will more than meet the requirements of the post-sulphur age. MP









Juha Koskela (ABB): “These tankers will be future-proofed for technology and regulations for years to come“

Platform supply vessel Dina Star, the first ship with ABB‘s DC Grid (image: ABB)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Four-strokes: sucking, squeezing, banging and blowing their way into the future Four-stroke technology is advancing, but enginebuilders are honing their existing units, rather than starting from scratch, meaning shipowners need not invest in new maintenance equipment, writes Selwyn Parker


The latest Wärtsilä 20 coaxes another 200 rpm from the power unit

Virgin Voyages‘ new cruise ships will be propelled by the latest Azipod technology (image: Virgin Voyages)

n the endless battle to extract more bang for the same hydrocarbon buck, Wärtsilä has unveiled a new version of one of its most faithful four-strokes, the Wärtsilä 20. It is hoped that the new powerplant could keep the design going for many more years, simply by coaxing another 200 rpm out of it, as Wärtsilä product manager for small-bore marine solutions Johan Kalax explains: “There are only two ways to gain higher output from an engine: the first is to increase the firing pressure at a fixed rotational speed, which is not usually possible without an extensive redesign of many parts. The second method – and the most economical – is to increase the rotations per minute (rpm) of the engine at a fixed firing pressure.” Understandably, the Finland-based group has adopted the second method for the Wärtsilä 20, which is now in production. The engineering wizardly can increase maximum rpm from 1,000 to 1,200 in mechanical propulsion engines, and from 900 to 1,200 for 60 hz generating sets. The extra boost from the revamped engine is measured in an increased cylinder output of 220 kW at 1,200 rpm. This latest advance has been imported from Wärtsilä dualfuel 20DF, which has been operating at 1,200 rpm since its introduction in 2011. As Mr Kalax explained, the 10% extra power is achieved by improving the relationship between the turbocharger and the compressor: “The key to tweaking additional rpm and capacity on the upgraded Wärtsilä 20 stems from the turbocharger and compressor aspects, where a new cooling pipe arrangement is needed to reduce the internal temperatures of the turbocharger.” Once this solution had been implemented, the rest was apparently relatively easy. A few new flanges and connecting holds were machined into the engine block, cylinder heads and camshaft to allow for cooling pipes and a new injection system was installed across the whole Wärtsilä 20 range, as well as a new and longerlasting air waste gate, replacing the old and somewhat unreliable pneumatic system. And the updated power unit will come complete with Wärtsilä’s UNIC control and automation system that delivers all the vital operational data via an LED touch screen. While that sounds like quite a lot of tweaking, Wärtsilä confirmed that the basic design of the original engine “remains untouched”. Thus, the Wärtsilä 20 – a favourite of lower-powered

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


merchant ships, special vessels and offshore supply ships – looks set for a new lease of life having been introduced in the early 1990s, since which time more than 6,000 of these engines have been delivered. Although production of the Wärtsilä 20 started earlier this year, it will take about two years to develop all versions of the engine. The company sees the revamped unit as being most suitable for the 1.3 to 2.0 MW segment of the merchant fleet. Even the biggest four-stroke power units are being made more functional through extra, outside forms of propulsion. When Virgin Voyages’ three new cruise ships are launched progressively between 2020 and 2022, each of the 278 m-long ships will be driven by two of ABB’s Azipod XO units, each delivering up to 32 MW in power. Linked to Wärtsilä’s giant 46F four-stroke engines, the biggest of which weighs more than 230 tonnes, Azipod propulsion represents a clear advance in cruise ships. It is a gearless, steerable system with the electric motor included in a submerged pod located outside the ship’s hull. According to ABB’s estimates, the system can reduce fuel consumption by up to 15% compared with standard shaft-line systems. The Azipods will be boosted by ABB’s own TPL-C turbochargers during more demanding operations.

Silent steaming

There has been plenty of talk about slow steaming over the last few (recessionary) years, but silent steaming for four-strokes could be around the corner. Later this year Wisconsin-based Catalytic Combustion Corp will start installing its Silent NOx system on vessels operating on America’s west coast. The main benefit of the system, according to the company, is that the reactor box containing the catalytic reduction system (SCR) is more compact and quieter

than competing technology. “[Silent NOx] saves a tremendous amount of valuable space on new or retrofit vessels,” it said, adding “The system fits right over the engine footprint, so it is great for refit applications and new installations.” The system can be configured for four different sound levels: industrial, residential, critical and hospital grade. The last should be good enough for silent steaming.

Evolution not revolution

Upgraded power units, rather than completely redesigned ones, are popular in both the enginerooms and the head offices of shipping companies because they mean maintenance procedures remain largely unchanged. Upgrades also mean that operators have access to a large store of existing spare parts, rather than having to buy in expensive new ones. To this end, Cummins has released a retooled version of its X15 four-stroke, aimed at the commercial marine market, from inland waters to passenger transport. The new X15 meets US EPA Tier III emissions standards and comes with the CM2350 engine control system that is designed to automatically shut down the engine to prevent a catastrophic failure. CM2350 monitors the fuel, gear pressure and temperature through a range of sensors. Designed for retrofits as well as newbuilds, the engine is seen as a replacement for units such as Cummins’ N14s, K19s and QSK19s that are approaching the end of their functioning lives. According to the company, the first of the updated X15s will be installed shortly in a crew boat in Louisiana. MP

PEMS – Power when you need it When the weather cuts up rough in the North Sea, the urgent, high-precision repair of vital power cables places huge demands on vessel engines. They must deliver just the right amount of power at the right time to hold a vessel steady. Fortunately, the propulsion system on the new 140 m-long NKT Victoria, one of the world’s most advanced cable-laying

ships, was up to the job when the crew were called out for just such a mission. Equipped with an ABB four-stroke power unit controlled by a directcurrent energy management system (PEMS), the NKT Victoria was able to support the repair work in large part due to the technology that allowed the vessel to hold station. The PEMS

The NKT Victoria uses a direct-current energy-management system to maintain position in rough seas (image: NKT)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

system, which is designed specifically for new and alternative energy sources, marks a step forward on standard alternative-current systems, where generators run at a fixed maximum speed irrespective of the power demand on board. “This leads to excessive engine wear and poor fuel efficiency at lower loads,” explained ABB global product manager for Onboard DC Grid in the marine and ports division John Olav Lindtjorn. Unlike standard alternative-current systems, direct current allows the generators to run at variable speeds. In its first year of operation, the NKT Victoria has more than proved its value, having installed 335 km of cables for offshore wind and interconnector projects in Denmark, Belgium and Britain. The direct-current technology is expected to be widely adopted in twoand four-stroke engines alike in coming years, offering advantages including low fuel consumption and reduced wear and tear on the engine.



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Dual-fuel engines developed for IMO Tier III requirements Progress Rail has developed gas injection for its engines for Tier III and EPA Tier 4, and SCRs for tug owners that want to continue using diesel


aterpillar subsidiary Progress Rail has introduced dual-fuel engines for a new generation of tugboats that need to operate under the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) and IMO’s stringent emission rules. These Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) engines would mostly use gas as a fuel with diesel just as a pilot. Dual-fuel engines are based on EMD’s existing diesel-only 710 series E23 engines. They meet EPA’s Tier 4 and IMO’s Marpol Annex VI for IMO Tier III requirements and will reduce fuel consumption for tug owners compared with diesel-only EMD engines, said Progress Rail director of power products Brian Grinter. EMD diesel and dual-fuel engines are two-stroke and medium-speed for a wide range of applications including power generation on semi-submersible drilling rigs, emergency power on naval ships and main engines on tugs and ferries. Being two-stroke, they are different from the majority of tugboat engines worldwide, which are four-stroke. Utilising a supercharger or turbocharger, EMD engines can react quickly to the varying loads and operational requirements. Mr Grinter presented Progress Rail’s engine technology at the British

EMD‘s 20-valve version E23 engine has a power rating of 3,730 kW at 900 rpm

Tugowners Association conference, in April 2018. He said there are two types of EMD dual-fuel engines available for workboats, which have operational and environmental benefits for owners. E23 GB uses dynamic gas blending, which substitutes 80% of the diesel with gas and can seamlessly switch between

EMD 710 Series E23/E23B ratings 900 rpm bkW

750 rpm bwK












Valves 8

Intermediate ratings are also available

the two without interruption of power output. “This injects gas at low pressure at the bottom of the stroke through the inlet ports,” he said, adding that it would be a good option for upgrade projects. “These retain power output, transient response and reliability of the original diesel engines,” Mr Grinter said. For newbuilding tug projects, the other engine model, E23 GD, could be used to maximise the use of LNG as it requires minimal diesel use. Mr Grinter said E23 GD has direct injected gas at high pressure and substitutes 95% of the diesel with gas with “the same power and transients as a diesel engine.” Mr Grinter explained that, if needed, the E23 GD engine could operate up to 30% power on diesel-only. In addition, it has almost no methane slip as the gas injected is completely burnt. Although EMD has not yet sold any dual-fuel engines to tug owners, Mr Grinter expects

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


they will be “a big part of our future sales”. EMD has also developed engines for tugowners that want to continue with diesel fuel but also want to meet US EPA Tier 4 and IMO Tier III requirements. This involves supplying a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) exhaust gas after-treatment unit with the engine. An SCR injects a liquid-reductant agent, in this case urea, into a diesel engine’s exhaust stream which then passes through a catalyst to remove nitrogen oxides (NOx). For an EMD E23B engine, the SCR is integrated into the engine with the same footprint as an E23 that does not have a NOx reduction unit. “There is no change in width or length of engine, so it can fit in same space in engineroom,” said Mr Grinter. “We have designed our solution so the SCR can be maintained completely within the engineroom.” Progress Rail regional support manager for EMD marine products Andy Alexander explained that E23 and E23B engines come in 8-, 12-, 16- and 20-valve versions. They are in a range of 1,250 bkW to 3,730 bkW with running speeds

of 750 rpm or 900 rpm and with power development of up to 186 kW/cylinder. Mr Alexander said these engines have a “two-cycle advantage over four-stroke engines.” The cool, highdensity charge air delivered to the E23 cylinders across this entire range enables the engine to accelerate from idle of 200 rpm to full power of up to 900 rpm rapidly. “The transient response from zero to full power driving a fixed pitch propeller is 11 seconds,” Mr Alexander said. In a powergeneration application, this transient response is just two seconds. “E23 has a high power-to-weight ratio and allows for easy condition monitoring, lower maintenance and lifecycle advantages over competitive four-stroke engines,” he explained. For example, the turbocharger has 30,000 hours running time before an overhaul is needed. Engine cylinders have the same running hours and there should be no need for mid-life overhauls, said Mr Alexander. There is also no need for oil changes between overhauls. During planned overhauls the power

assembly, head, liner, piston and rod, can all be removed as one unit in less than four hours and the replacement components are light weight. E23 engines have an inbound overhead camshaft, partially watercooled exhaust, full liner cooling and closed crankcase ventilation. The fuel-oil system has electric-controlled injectors, a mechanical oil filter and centrifuge. Progress Rail developed non-invasive inspection of cylinder components for easy maintenance. Mr Alexander and Mr Grinter told the conference that these medium-speed and two-stroke engines have many advantages over four-stroke, high-speed engines for tugs. Those same advantages carry over to LNG gas-injection versions as well. • Moran Towing is using E23 engines on 12 of its tugs that operate on the US east coast. These are on 4,475 kW tugs with twin-screw Z-drive propulsion that, in pairs, handle large container ships using the ports of New York, New Jersey and Norfolk in Virginia.

Engines become part of an intelligent propulsion system

John Shock (Caterpillar): Automation and digital analytics will achieve IMO-EPAcompliant operations

Engines should be part of an integrated and intelligent propulsion system to meet IMO Tier III/EPA Tier 4 requirements. They are already connected to propulsion thrusters of various types and sizes and a tug’s automation. However, analytics and intelligence can be added to these systems, said Caterpillar segment manager John Shock at Riviera Maritime Media’s Sulphur Cap 2020 conference, which was held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in April. “Future designs will require integration of intelligent propulsion systems and technology to meet the demands for efficiency and emissions reduction,” he said at the conference. He expects there will be greater levels of automation and digital analytics “to achieve and maintain [IMO-EPA-] compliant operations and to provide compliance documentation.” Apart from the engines, an integrated propulsion system will include propellers that are optimised using computational fluid dynamics, power management and engine optimisation units and marine asset intelligence, said Mr Shock. Caterpillar has developed a multi-engine optimiser (MEO) that advises which engines to run and at what load. “It uses detailed fuel maps to pick optimum load points for constant speed or variable speeds,” said Mr Shock. MEO runs each engine at this most efficient load point for the power required. Engine-response data facilitates a stable bus in power terms for variable-speed operations. It also means medium-speed and high-speed engines can operate on the same bus. Mr Shock said fuel savings could range between 5%-20%, NOx reductions by 5%-50% and overhauls could be extended up to 25%. Under asset intelligence, engineroom equipment is monitored and analysed. This data is sent to shore for automated and expert analytics that can identify potential issues and develop advisories to vessel managers and masters, Mr Shock explained. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Extinguishing the risk: engineroom safety and fire avoidance The overwhelming evidence suggests that most engineroom fires are accidents waiting to happen. Selwyn Parker considers how best to mitigate the risks


Even a well-trained crew cannot be expected to deal with the most devastating of fires; time to call in the experts

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

ires on board ships pose special dangers compared with conflagrations on terra firma. Not only is it more difficult for crew and passengers to escape from fires, it is more challenging to extinguish them, especially when they start in the engineroom. As maritime consultant Brookes Bell pointed out last year in a study titled Fire Prevention on board Ships for the marine insurance specialist Shipowners Club: “Unlike a land-based fire, a ship’s crew are not able to walk away from a fire at sea and rely upon the local fire department to extinguish it. With limited resources, crews may be expected to deal with fire incidents that would test even the most experienced of fire-fighters.” Quite apart from the loss of life, the financial consequences of serious onboard fires, whether they occur in the engineroom or elsewhere, are likely to be substantial. As Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty pointed out in its 2017 review of safety and shipping, the advent of “mega-ships” has raised the stakes. “Exposures are increasing exponentially,” Allianz warned. “The loss of a large container vessel or passenger ship in environmentally sensitive waters could cost billions of dollars, potentially even resulting in a US$4Bn loss if two large vessels are involved.” And sure enough, there were three major fires on container ships in 2016 involving the Maersk Karachi, the CCNI Arauco and the Wan Hai 307, followed in early 2017 by the MSC Daniela,


Boudicca was left without power after an engineroom fire (image: Fred Olsen Cruise Lines)

which burned for more than a week 120 nautical miles off the coast of Sri Lanka. Hazardous cargo was the culprit in most of these cases, but the crews were not able to put the fires out without outside assistance. And that is becoming a concern for operators and insurers alike.

“Crews may be expected to deal with fire incidents that would test even the most experienced of fire-fighters”

Prevention is best

Meantime, it follows that it is even more important on a ship that every effort is made to avoid fires. “The safety of the vessel and its crew is dependent upon adequate fire prevention measures to avoid the occurrence of such incidents in the first place,” noted Brookes Bell. Unfortunately, the evidence clearly shows that engineroom fires are all too common – and all too preventable. According to Allianz, fire and explosion accounted for eight of the total losses in all seas in 2016, the latest available year, but there were numerous other less catastrophic outbreaks, mostly in enginerooms. (By far the major cause of total losses is vessels foundering, with 46 ships sinking in 2016.) And there are also common origins of engineroom incidents. Over 50% of all fires within the engineroom are caused by fuel or lubricating oil leaking onto hot surfaces, according to the Brookes Bell study. And oil leaks are often due to the failure of pipes and/or associated fittings. It goes on to cite a dismaying list of preventable, as well as predictable, reasons for such failures: mechanical fatigue, vibration and pulsations, chafing and fretting, improper securing, damage during maintenance operations, improper repairs, incorrect tightening procedures and finally, the use of poor-quality materials. International authorities have compiled

numerous case studies that corroborate these findings, the most recent being the investigation into the engineroom fire aboard the roro vessel Caribbean Fantasy off Puerto Rico in August 2016. In its report released in June 2018, the US National Transportation Safety Board found a litany of failures following the outbreak of fire in the main engineroom, when the vessel was two miles off the coast of Puerto Rico. Ignited when fuel sprayed from a leaking flange onto the exhaust manifold on the port main propulsion engine, the fire spread so rapidly that the crew were unable to contain it and the master ordered the Caribbean Fantasy be abandoned. Fortunately, the vessel was close enough to shore for all 511 passengers and crew to be rescued, albeit with several injuries. However, the ensuing report compiled a series of safety issues that contributed to the loss: machinery maintenance practices were inadequate; the gasket on the highpressure end flange was of an “improper” type and the material had broken down; bolts inserted into the quick-closing valves, vital safety technology in the event of a fire, had been deliberately wedged open so they could not shut; and the crew had

failed to adhere fully to the manufacturer’s maintenance manual. Further, the crew were not properly trained to deal with a fire. The flag state’s testing organisation, RINA Services, did not adequately inspect the quick-closing valves. The water mist fire-fighting system failed to do its job probably because it was trying to cover too many zones at the same time and lacked enough water. The failure of ventilation dampers to close as they should meant the carbon dioxidebased, fixed fire-fighting system did not work properly. The NTSB’s damning conclusion read: “Contributing to the fire and the prolonged abandonment effort was the failure of the Panama Maritime Authority and the recognised organisation, RINA Services, to ensure Baja Ferries’ safety management system was functional.” Leakages are probably the main trigger for engineroom fires – and they are probably the most easily avoided. Many leakages are associated with the wear and tear of relatively cheap items, such as pipes. And nothing more sophisticated than compliance with existing regulations would go a long way to reducing their frequency. The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) requires operators to comply with the International Safety Management (ISM) code, which relates to disciplined maintenance and regular inspection. Among other stipulations, the code mandates that any hot surface with a temperature above 220°C must be insulated. If that is done, the likelihood of a fire being triggered by a leakage of oil or fuel is greatly reduced. As the NTSB’s report suggests, the

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Caribbean Fantasy might still be afloat if Baja Ferries had observed the rule book. That is why the agency has urged among other proposals that the US Coast Guard insist that operators perform full-function tests of quick-closing values during inspections and examinations. The NTSB has also told Baja Ferries to conduct worst-case scenario risk assessments for all active water-based fire-suppression systems on its vessels.

Minor leaks, major problems

And these measures pay off, as an unnamed shipowner has learned. In a case study released by the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA), a minor leak that could have caused a major incident was discovered in December 2017 on an offshore vessel when a crew member was conducting due diligence of the engineroom pipes. It was an accident waiting to happen. A fuel pipe connection leading to the main engines had failed because of a faulty weld but, as the report noted, “the root cause was believed to be the age of the pipe, an original fit from the vessel’s construction that had incurred natural degradation over a long period of time.” Some adroit repair work by the chief engineer was able to seal the leak and the vessel carried on. But the lessons learned apply to thousands of vessels with hard-worked, ageing power units. The report cited the importance of “engineers remaining vigilant in their engineroom watch-keeping duties for potential signs of pipe and equipment failure caused by vibration.” In a useful tip, because these failings cannot always be predicted, IMCA recommends that operators make sure that enginerooms carry spare pipes and temporary repair solutions for lowpressure piping. Although repair of the immediate problem is obviously top priority, IMCA underlines the importance of followup paperwork. When detailed reports, supporting information and photographs were analysed, they revealed the failure was the fourth to have occurred in the fuel-supply pipes within four months. At an average of one a month, that is clearly cause for concern. But if the worst occurs and a fire does break out, there is considerable evidence that some crews are not sufficiently skilled to put it out. For instance, the Shipowners Club, which insures over

According to Allianz, fire and explosion accounted for eight of the total losses in all seas in 2016

The major cause of total losses is vessels foundering, with 46 ships sinking in 2016

Over 50% of all fires within the engineroom are caused by fuel or lubricating oil leaking onto hot surfaces

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

32,000 small and specialist vessels in all parts of the world, despatched last year its loss prevention experts to help a member operator concerned with the ability of crews to handle a conflagration. They found problems across the entire fleet, with crews lacking confidence in handling life-saving and fire-fighting equipment. The company is now training up crews. Allianz weighed in on this issue, concluding in its 2017 report: “Safety and support systems on board container ships have not kept pace with the increased size of vessels and numbers of containers. As a result, there are now serious concerns for the ability of the crew to put out a fire on a container vessel where fire-fighting equipment proves insufficient.” Clearly though, it is better to forestall fires than to have to put them out. The benefits of prevention fall straight to the bottom line, as Oslo-based maritime software group Bass general manager of product development Haakon Dalan pointed out in a paper in June entitled From cost to profit: a fresh look at safety management. His core argument is that an accident of any kind should be seen as a loss that can be prevented, rather than as a more or less inevitable occurrence that has to be managed. And this requires a company-wide, systematic approach to prevention. (Supporting this argument, the Caribbean Fantasy fire caused about UD$20M in damage and the operator elected to scrap the vessel rather than try and get it back into action.) “By strengthening management reporting, improvement planning, and actions around a loss causation model, shipowners and ship operators will find it easier to identify improvements that should be prioritised in the company’s action plan for the next six to 12 months,” Mr Dalan suggests. “Without any such system, it is likely that safety management systems will have less effect on the actual operations of the fleet or, worse, may allow such issues to be treated haphazardly.” Contrary to what many shipowners believe, insurance covers only some of the costs of an engineroom fire. As Mr Dalan argues, the other costs from events that put a vessel out of action should be measured in management time, decreased productivity, loss of goodwill and loss of potential new business, among other factors. All of these “eat into company profits.” Clearly, sticking to the manual and other fixed procedures can save a lot of time and money. MP

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When oil hits hot metal The engineroom can be a dangerous place, where the slightest lapse in judgement can result in a devastating conflagration

The engineroom is home to a disproportionately large amount of fires


etween 30-50% of all fires on merchant ships originate in the engineroom and 70% of those fires are triggered by oil leaks, according to research co-ordinated by IMO. Given these percentages, it is astonishing that seemingly minor leakages are often left unattended. As recent research by Burgoynes, the international consulting scientists and engineers, on behalf of mutual insurance firm P&I Club, warns: “Fires can result from a failure to attend to small persistent leaks that can spread across machinery surfaces to reach parts operating at a high temperature [as well as] from larger leaks that develop suddenly.” The report, entitled Risk Focus – Engine Room Fires, identified a multitude of origins of potentially catastrophic leakages, including loose joints and fractured pipes, loose bleed cocks on generator fuel filters, over- or under-tightened pipe

unions, fractured bolts or studs, the use of unsuitable seals or gaskets that have deteriorated under heat, and the rupture of high-pressure oil and hydraulic fluid hoses because of mechanical damage or ageing. Generally, the fixes are remarkably simple. As Burgoynes advises, engineroom crews should stick to correct maintenance procedures and be sure to sheath or otherwise protect the hot metal that can induce fuel to explode. “Any hot surface shielding should also be effectively maintained”, notes the report. As the report concludes, cladding or shielding of hot surfaces is “possibly the most effective way to prevent engineroom fires [and it is] fairly easy to implement on board.” But what exactly is hot? According to Burgoynes, the relevant guideline is the “minimum auto ignition temperature” (MAIT) of the oil. The MAITs of diesel and fuel oil are typically about 250°C, but

they can be as low as 225°C. The SOLAS regulations stipulate that all exposed areas as low as 220°C should be protected. Yet the consultancy quotes surveys that reveal around 80% of ships checked had failed to do so. As a series of case studies conducted by IMO reveals, most engineroom incidents, whether fires or not, result from inattention to such detail. An explosion killed the chief engineer and an apprentice on a passenger/roro vessel because vital pipes were not insulated and four important bolts were loose. Similarly, a fire broke out on a 45,000 gt vessel when a diesel generator suffered a catastrophic failure, possibly because palm nuts on the connecting rod had been incorrectly tightened during an overhaul. In another case it came down to what IMO describes as “poor house-keeping”. Inflammable cleaning material, which had been stored unsafely before disposal, led to one fire, while another happened because a flexible fuel hose had been allowed to wear out. And in yet another case, this time a potentially serious engineroom fire when the ship was in port, it was found that the crew had no manuals of any kind that could help them prevent it or handle it. Another cause of fire is the self-closing valve. These are fitted in fire-prone places, typically between the lower end of an oil tank and its gauge glass, to isolate one from the other. Through the pressure of springs or counter-balance gravity, they are designed to be shut during normal operation and only opened so crew can check the contents of the tank. Yet, as the UK branch of the P&I Club reports, it is by no means uncommon for crews to jam these valves open, using anything from bits of wood, wire or clamps, just to make their work easier. “This is dangerous practice,” warns the UK Club. “If a gauge breaks in a fire, the entire contents of the tank will leak into the burning area, escalating the fire.” MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Developments in driveline transmission technology

Katsa is developing new systems for its range of clutches and gearboxes while Dellner has made a significant acquisition, writes Ed Martin


hile the basic mechanics behind a gearbox may not change much, there is always scope for optimisation. New technologies are helping better mate transmissions to applications such as hybrid or even fully electricpowered vessels, and the machinery can be customised to meet specific project needs. Finnish gear component and gearbox manufacturer Katsa develops bespoke gearboxes for use on land. In recent years it has shifted its marine strategy to start implementing its land-based clutch and power take-off (PTO) gearbox applications to the waterborne market. Marine projects often have specific requirements, for example optimising a diesel engine’s running speed with a hydraulic pump’s speed, which means some degree of tailoring is necessary. Katsa offers semi-standardised, highmodularity power take-off systems. In practical terms this means providing multifunctional base housings that can be machined in different ways and equipped with components to meet the requirements of a given project. This compromise between bespoke equipment and off-the-shelf systems allows the company to provide tailored products while meeting expectations in terms of budget and turnaround time. Katsa is also developing a hybrid PTO gearbox that can be installed on workboats, tugboats, offshore support and fishing vessels that have electric and diesel propulsion and auxiliary machinery. The hybrid PTO gearbox will be

An example configuration of a Katsa PTO gearbox

introduced to Katsa’s existing range at the SMM exhibition in September. The design is based on the company’s existing PTO gearboxes and has been adapted to fit on to diesel-driven and electric motors in a vessel’s propulsion driveline. Katsa sales manager Mikko Happonen said these hybrid PTO gearboxes will have “wide flexibility for adjusting the electric motor ratio, utilising different clutches and control systems.” These adjustments will be similar to the flexibility already afforded by the existing Katsa range for propulsion and machinery on workboats, offshore support and fishing vessels and tugboats. Its gearboxes are tailored to suit each combination of vessel and owner requirements, said Mr Happonen, with typical tasks such as generating hydraulic

power supplies for machinery on various types of workboats. These PTO gearboxes can also be used for driving and engaging cargo pumps on commercial vessels, or mud pumps in oil and gas applications, he added. Since September 2016, these gearboxes can also be used for marine fire-fighting, including on FiFi-classed vessels. The gearboxes are designed to manage power of up to 1,200 kW and clutch torques to a maximum of 16,000 Nm, depending on the application and gearbox/ clutch configurations. Gear ratios can be adapted to suit project requirements. Katsa has also developed an integrated control system that helps vessel operators extend the lifetime and performance of the gearboxes and clutches. “The control system can be either integrated into the main

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


control or act separately as a stand-alone unit with a panel on the vessel’s bridge,” said Mr Happonen. Its existing PTO gearboxes and clutches have water coolers and independent oil circulation, with pumps that have integrated oil sumps. The hydraulic block has an integrated oil filter that was designed for marine applications. Optional additions to the gearbox include integrated controls and clutch protection, which will also be available for the hybrid PTO range when that is introduced in September. Katsa has also identified a need for different clutch gearboxes and PTOs for main propulsion thrust equipment and is consequently developing a new series of modular-clutch PTO gearboxes. The basic design of these will be able to be adapted to meet the requirements of various class societies. Depending on the gearbox’s application, these propulsion PTO clutch units can be fully direct drive between the driving and driven units, or can be equipped with suitable clutch solutions. Standardised addons such as flywheel housings, manifolds, filters and coolers will be available. An example of this gearbox series in dieselelectric hybrid PTO clutch configuration will be displayed at SMM.

New electrohydraulic braking system

Meanwhile, following the acquisition of German brake manufacturer Pintsch Bubenzer

Dellner and Pintsch Bubenzer‘s electrohydraulic braking system is designed for smaller vessels to stop, turn and lock propeller shafts

Katsa is also developing a hybrid PTO gearbox that can be installed on workboats, tugboats, offshore support and fishing vessels

in January, Dellner Brakes has joined forces with its new subsidiary to produce a new electrohydraulic braking system. The Swedish brake manufacturer and its sister company are launching the “plug and play” system at this year’s SMM. The new system provides a compact self-contained system to stop, turn and lock (STL) ship propeller shafts. The system combines elements of Dellner Brakes’ STL systems with Pintsch Bubenzer’s BUEL electrohydraulic thruster/ power package. It does not incorporate any external piping and the BUEL package uses only half a litre of high-performance synthetic oil (as compared with standard hydraulic power units, which use 7 litres of hydraulic oil), making it cheaper to run and more environmentally friendly. The system comprises a Pintsch Bubenzer BUEL Model G, which can deliver up to 240 bar of pressure, and a Dellner disc brake that has a stopping torque of up to 1,026 kilonewtons. Options can also be exercised to add a locking device, which can be powered hydraulically, electrically or manually, with a locking force of up to 1,000 kN, and an electrical continuous turning device. Dellner’s STL are modular units suited to hybrid and mechanical propulsion and can be operated remotely from an electronic push-button panel in a control room, by a handheld remote control, or from a mobile device if there is wifi on board. These STLs include an electrical disc brake that quickly stops the shaft in any position. After the brake has stopped the disc, an electric gear wheel turns the disc and connected shaft at a variable speed into an exact position for locking, explained Dellner Brakes chief executive Marcus Aberg. Once in position, the locking mechanism pushes a tapered pin into a machined slot on the brake disc. “This locks and holds the shaft securely in place, even in ship failure modes,” he said. Vessel operators can choose one, two or all three of the STL functions. “Our all-electric STL is the first of its kind and has a patent pending,” said Mr Aberg. “It is

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

fully automated so the operator can instigate the entire stopping, turning and locking procedure with a single press of a button.” There are machinery safety applications, too. For example, an STL can secure a propeller if the vessel is drifting or is buffeted by waves, preventing damage to the shaft and bearings. When in harbour, it can rotate the shaft through 180˚ to stop the shaft from bending. “Shaft rotation can also exercise water-lubricated bearings and help reduce marine growth on the propeller blades, all without needing to turn on the engines,” said Mr Aberg. Dellner’s standard range has a stopping torque of up to 285 kNm, turning torque up to 119 kN and locking torque up to 600 kNm. Electric STLs can also be adapted for higher torques where requested. “Our system enables faster directional changes with maximum manoeuvrability,” said Mr Aberg. This is useful for quickly stopping the propeller when alternating from forward to reverse or locking the shaft to avoid drag, especially in narrow or shallow water. It can be applied to twin propeller or multiple screw vessels as it can be used to stop, hold and lock one of the shafts while the others are operating at reduced speed, or at full speed for safe return to port. Mr Aberg added that an STL can also hold a broken shaft or propeller in place while others are operating. “The turning and locking functions make routine maintenance and blade assembly quicker, easier and safer.” STLs can be used for turning the shaft and propeller for inspection and locking it securely for maintenance. Mr Aberg said an electrical STL requires less downtime and there is “no need for oil changes or expensive pressure testing.” He said it is applicable to smallto medium-sized vessels including tugs, ferries and offshore support vessels. “Being electrically powered, it helps lower fuel consumption, reduces load on propulsion systems and offers considerable safety benefits,” he said. MP

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Twin Disc marks 100th anniversary with Veth acquisition Veth’s acquisition of thruster manufacturer Twin Disc coincides with it centenerary


acine, Wisconsin-based powertransmission technology specialist Twin Disc celebrated its 100th anniversary in April this year, followed in July by an announcement that it would acquire thruster maker Veth Propulsion. The company has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Veth Propulsion, a global supplier of main and auxiliary marine propulsion products, in a deal valued between US$58M and US$62M This purchase is expected to cost around US$58.6M, with potential adjustments based on Veth Propulsion’s working capital and performance. This deal diversifies Twin Disc’s geographic position, marine markets and products. Twin Disc said it would finance this acquisition through a combination of cash and new debt facilities. There would be add-ons of up to US$3.9M, to be paid in Twin Disc common stock, if certain earn-out provisions are met. Veth Propulsion is headquartered in Papendrecht, the Netherlands, and produces propulsion and power-control products and associated services. This includes azimuth rudder propellers, thrusters and generator sets, mainly for workboats, tugs, passenger ships and merchant ships. The two companies have worked together since December 2015, when Veth Propulsion selected Twin Disc as its distributor for selected Asian markets. This relationship was expanded in 2016 with a North American distribution partnership. Twin Disc chief executive officer and president John Batten said the acquisition will “strategically expand our global market

and increase our size, scale, and scope within the marine industry”. He added that Veth Propulsion’s hybrid drive and integrated L-drive technology “will open new markets and opportunities for growth”. This year, Veth Propulsion is expected to achieve sales of US$60M. As part of this acquisition, Twin Disc

has secured a US$50M asset-based line of credit and US$35M of term notes. In recent years, Twin Disc has supplied transmission systems to vessels in a range of operational areas, such as oil spill response unit G.M. Penman, Artic Circle-based shallow-water landing craft Unalaq, fast supply vessel Alya McCall and fast supply catamarans Seacor Panther and Seacor Puma. The company is seeing the Veth acquisition bear fruit already, with Barbour JB Shipyard of St Louis, Missouri, a longtime user of Twin Disc’s reduction gears, opting to fit Veth thrusters on a currently under-construction harbour tug. MP

Seacor Panther and sister ship Seacor Puma are fitted with Twin Disc transmissions

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


DNV GL’s new shaft alignment notations will “help customers better manage the risk of stern tube bearing failure” (credit: DNV GL)

DNV GL addresses early stern tube bearing failures I

ncreasing numbers of stern tube bearings are failing early in a ship’s life, according to a webinar hosted by class society DNV GL in April. Its principal engineer, group technology and research, maritime, Øystein Alnes, said that the early failures are being seen during mooring trials, sea trials and within the first few weeks or months in service. These failures usually involve ‘wiping’, in which the white metal bearing surface is rubbed off, particularly on stern tubes with single bearings. This can happen when a vessel is making hard manoeuvres during its sea trials, creating transient propeller loads and a large downwards bending moment on the propeller shaft. This puts a larger share of the load at the aft end of the bearing, concentrating the load on a small area of the bearing surface. “If the load-carrying area becomes too small the pressure will get too high, the temperature will increase and you might end up in a situation where you have a wiped bearing,” he said. This is in marked contrast to the traditional situation, in which stern tube damage tended to be caused by fatigue

Why are stern tube bearings failing in increasing numbers and what can be done about it? Paul Gunton investigates

failures that were spotted during five- and 10-year dockings. There appear to be no obvious common factors behind these failures. “It is not possible to isolate single yards or single class societies – it is across the whole fleet, although some segments, such as bulk, tanker and container, are the most frequent segments experiencing problems,” he said. Asked by Marine Propulsion why this has become a particular problem in recent years, Mr Alnes listed a number of factors that, in combination, might be relevant. One was vessel design trends towards larger and slower propellers, along with propeller efficiency devices that might influence the propeller hydrodynamic loads. Another was the increased popularity of single-bearing stern tube configurations.

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

He also noted that there have been cases of sub-optimal operation with semisubmersed propellers running at high speeds. “Typically, mooring trials will be run quayside with propeller submersion of about 50%,” he said. And since many yards – especially in China – are located in shallow waters, “large vessels need to run for substantial distances at very light ballast draught before entering deep waters.” Because “vessels and propellers are getting larger, the risk of ending up with a critical situation has increased,” he said. His advice in such cases is to minimise propeller speed to limit the additional load on the aft stern tube bearing. He also commented on the use of environmentally acceptable lube oils (EALs) in stern tube bearings. “We suspect that there might be differences in the loadcarrying capacity of these new lubricants compared to the traditional mineral oil stern tube lubricants,” he said. “Some yards have opted to run sea trials with mineral oil in the stern tube and switching to EAL upon delivery,” he said. But DNV GL believes that sea trials are important in validating a propulsion system

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➤ “and we therefore now require yards to

test the system with the same lubricant as the vessel will be delivered.” This is reflected in revised class rules for single stern tube bearing installations, which were published in January and came into effect on 1 July. That new requirement is included in Chapter 2 of Part 4, which covers rotating machinery. That is not the only stern tube-related aspect of its rules that were updated in January. It also introduced two voluntary class notations: Shaft align(1) and Shaft align(2). They also came into effect on 1 July and in a statement in February, DNV GL said that they would “help customers better manage the risk of stern tube bearing failure.” They were developed in response to demand from customers, Mr Alnes later said in his webinar and he reported a lot of interest in them. They take account of “the bending moment induced by the propeller during

operation”, the February statement said, specifically mentioning “turning manoeuvres at higher ship speeds [when] exaggerated propeller bending moments can occur, potentially resulting in a reduced shaft-bearing contact area and an exponential increase in local pressure and thermal loading.” Although DNV GL has not specifically said so, the rules appear to be aimed at the problems that Mr Alnes described as causing early bearing failure. During the Webinar, Mr Alnes said that Shaft align(1) is a basic option for vessels with conventional hullforms. Shaft align(2) is an advanced option for more sophisticated propulsion systems, for example in ships with unconventional hullforms and requires designers to carry out computer-aided fluid dynamics calculations to find the hydrodynamic propeller loads and them apply them to a finite element analysis to calculate the bearing contact area and pressure during transient operations.

Øystein Alnes (DNV GL): “The risk of ending up with a critical situation has increased” (credit: DNV GL)

Why are stern tube bearings failing?

A dynamic shaft alignment check with the shaft in motion (credit: Wärtsilä)

Stern tube bearing failures are on the increase and some of the reasons behind the rise appear to be unintended consequences of operational trends. In an exclusive interview with Marine Propulsion, Wärtsilä UK OEM sales manager, seals and bearings, Simon Wiles, highlighted a few of them. Environmentally acceptable lubes (EALs) have been blamed for some bearing failures, he said, prompting Wärtsilä to conduct an in-depth study into EAL performance in stern tube bearings. That work was in progress in Japan at the time of Marine Propulsion’s interview in mid-July but Mr Wiles said that early indications suggested that EALs may not perform as well as traditional mineral oils, especially during the early sea-trial period. Another factor is a by-product of the drive for energy efficiency that has led some operators to fit larger propellers than originally installed. These are heavier and slower, which has an impact on bearing loads. Their replacement might be accompanied by hull modifications – making them asymmetric, for example – which can affect shaft alignment. Overheating caused by unfavourable operating conditions can also result in bearing failures, he said, giving as one example the forces generated by partially submerged propellers running at high speeds. Single-bearing stern tube designs are another regular feature among bearing failures, he said, a choice often made to reduce cost. But such systems are sensitive to some operational situations, such as sharp turns. For those installations, it is critical that detailed calculations are done at the design stage “to make sure you are operating with the correct alignment criteria,” he said. “That is perhaps not always done,” he added. Wärtsilä is able to make additional calculations to support

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


customers, he noted. “When we see a general arrangement that we think is of concern we try to work through it with the customer.” When it comes to preventing stern tube bearing damage, how a ship is managed is at least as important as how it is maintained, judging by Mr Wiles’ comments. Operators should “ensure that they are operating under the conditions that the system was designed for,” which is not always the case, he said. “Far too many operators and owners want to save money through fuel savings and make modifications to the [propulsion] system without updating or changing the alignment criteria.” His advice was that if a ship is modified, “make sure you are doing your due diligence in the calculations to ensure that you are aligning the shaft line correctly to operate under those [new] conditions.” As for maintenance, Mr Wiles said: “Using OEM parts and following the OEM’s recommendations for each of those components is very important. Use the correct lubricants and follow the right maintenance procedures. Simple as that, I would say.”

Dynamic calculations give accurate alignment checks Shaft alignment checks are often unrealistic, believes Wärtsilä UK OEM sales manager, seals and bearings, Simon Wiles, because they are based on measurements that are taken in a static condition. Historically, alignment calculations “have effectively been theoretical,” he told Marine Propulsion, based on data provided by equipment suppliers and on the vessel’s expected operating conditions. These are checked against measurements taken in a drydock and afloat. Better, he suggested, is to take dynamic readings when the propeller shaft is operating. Those will not be theoretical, he said, “and will provide a true interpretation of what is happening on board.” To achieve that, it uses its portable condition-based monitoring (PCBM) equipment to make these checks and measurements. It was developed by Wärtsilä’s Denmark-based shaft-alignment specialists to be a suitcase-sized set of test equipment that can be taken on board a ship to make measurements. It costs about €5,000 (US$5,700) to have the equipment for a week. “The value is in the data analysis that we perform afterwards,” said Mr Wiles. These tests are carried out when a ship operator has concerns, he explained. For example, the shaft might be vibrating or bearing temperatures are high or a seal might be leaking. In those cases, “it would be very sensible to install a PCBM.” Measurements would be taken over the course of a sailing, or over about a week for a ship such as a ferry, after which the ship’s crew would pack up the equipment and the data it has logged and return it for analysis. Results are available within a week; possibly within a day, Mr Wiles said. Asked what this dynamic measurement system is revealing, Mr Wiles spoke of “a multitude of different issues” being involved. “Anything along the shaft line can be misaligned”, he said, linked to “design, installation, operation and lubricants”. There can also be operational factors, such as temperature changes as the ship moves from region to region, that cause hull deflections. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Poor quality EALs ’cause stern tube bearing problems’ Dutch stern tube maintenance specialist RM Propulsion has no doubt what the cause of many stern tube bearing problems is: low-quality biodegradable environmentally acceptable lubes (EALs) that do not match the quality of mineral oil. In an exclusive interview with Marine Propulsion, founder and general manager Robin Mulders said that many EALs offer film thicknesses of only 30% of mineral oils, although he named some manufacturers that he believes produce EALs that do not suffer from that problem. “Another issue we see is that they deteriorate rapidly,” he said. They effectively rot within the stern tube seal, he said, producing a foul-smelling sludge that can cause poor lubrication of the seals. “We have seen this result in seal damage, which may compromise bearings,” he noted. In his view, class societies should pay more attention to this problem, rather than issue new rules on stern tube bearings. “I think they might be looking in the wrong place,” he said. “There were not any issues when people were using exclusively mineral oil.” And if a good quality EAL is used, a stern tube bearing can be “absolutely as good as it has ever been.” But there are additional costs associated with using EALs because components – in particular seals – must be made from EAL-resistant material, which makes them expensive, he said. Asked for advice on how to select a good EAL, he recommended choosing one with a viscosity of at least 150 cSt to ensure adequate lubrication film strength. He also suggested that shipowners should check that their EAL is a fully saturated synthetic ester. These are not cheap, he said, but they “will be stable enough to do this kind of job.” He also recommended that shipowners should demand a guarantee from their supplier that the lube oil will remain usable for a long time. One manufacturer offers a five-year guarantee under certain conditions, he said.

Poor quality EALs can decompose to form a black sludge (credit: RM Propulsion)

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How best to avoid stern tube damage Hull and machinery insurers, P&I clubs and classification societies are reporting increased cases of stern tube damage because of incomplete propeller immersion, writes Glen Ralston How it should be done: although at light draught on trials, this ship's propeller is fully submerged (credit: NASSCO)


he use of low-immersion propellers on some vessels with low-speed fixed-pitch installations is not new. As such, increasing incidences of stern tube damage caused by incomplete propeller immersion may suggest that operational considerations need to be better addressed. Such propellers are used on a diverse range of vessels, such as bulk carriers, container vessels and large tankers, due to draught restrictions at certain ports; they also come into play when vessels are in a lightship condition. Owners and operators need to recognise when these situations will occur and make a voyage plan before entering or manoeuvring in restricted rivers and ports where these conditions exist. Stern tube failure can happen quickly when low immersion conditions occur. Its main cause is the loss of the hydrodynamic lubrication film within the white metal bearing, causing a rapid temperature rise and overheating. This wipes the bearing surfaces, rendering the stern tube ineffective and causing delays and expensive repairs that the owner and operator must address quickly. Conditions in which stern tube failures occur vary and can be affected by the overall condition of the propeller, rudder, stern tube and main engine. When looking into the factors that cause specific failures, a number of issues must be considered. A main consideration is the detrimental effect of wiping the bearing due to loss of the oil film, causing shaft and bearing contact. Hydrodynamic lubrication failure will lead to excessive temperatures and other symptoms including reduced engine performance. Although this failure may not be a direct result of low immersion, the effect of cyclic loading and shear stress on the stern tube bearings over time may lead to failures. Pressure conditions within the bearing surfaces should also be considered. The stern tube manufacturer’s recommended oil supplier should be consulted, as it will advise the oil grade to be used with the correct viscosity during service. It will also have information about service-life suitability, but regular sampling should be carried out to monitor water contamination. The propeller shaft diameter and weight determine the contact area on the bearing, but shaft misalignment tolerances will affect the overall bearing load distribution. This will also be influenced by the propeller’s weight, which will cause bending moments along the shaft leading to localised pressure variations.

When the propeller is only partially immersed, its performance is usually another main contributory cause of stern tube problems. Because it is not operating to its optimum and designed thrust and torque parameters, the effects of eccentric thrust, cavitation and vibration will create uneven load distribution and inadvertently lead to bending monuments and localised stress areas, especially in the aft part of the bearing where edge loading may develop and increase over time. Apart from the stern tube being exposed to damage, cavitation damage on the propeller may also occur as a result of operating the vessel in these conditions over an extended period of time.

“Hydrodynamic lubrication failure will lead to excessive temperatures and other symptoms” Large rudder angles when the propellers are in a lowimmersion condition can also play a part in increasing the risk of damage, as propeller wash efficiency is reduced causing the vessel to respond to helm orders more sluggishly. In some instances, this can cause the master to increase main engine power and speed, exacerbating the situation. Foreign materials on the water surface around the propeller area can also contribute to stern tube bearing failure. Logs, ropes or other sizable objects can contact the propeller blades as they break through the water, leading to localised damage and increased cavitation and vibration. When operating vessels in these conditions, operators should consider limiting the main engine’s speed and power output and monitor the stern tube bearing temperature. These actions, along with regular oil sampling and draining, can reduce the risk of such damage occurring, but shipowners and operators should also seek advice from their stern tube manufacturers, to implement procedures that can be adopted on board. Finally, they should use manoeuvring tugs in ports or areas where these conditions may occur and reduce the demands for large rudder angles. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018









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’Electric Revolution’ sees business booming for ESS providers N

orwegian-Canadian Corvus Energy, a provider of energy storage systems (ESS) for marine, oil and gas and port applications, continues to see high demand for its systems across a range of sectors and is expanding production as a result. As well as growing and upgrading its Vancouver, Canada factory with a 200 MWh semi-automated battery production facility, Corvus is planning a new product R&D, design and engineering facility to be completed by the beginning of 2019. In Bergen, Norway, Corvus is planning a 400 MWh fully automated factory and marine system testing and development facility, with work expected to be completed in Q2 or Q3 2019. The Norwegian expansion follows “strong growth in the Norwegian market, resulting from new ferry tenders and high demand for hybrid energy systems in the offshore and shipping sectors,” according to a Corvus press release. Noting that there is an ‘electric revolution’ taking place in the maritime sector, Corvus Energy chief executive Geir Bjørkeli said: “These strategic locations of our R&D and production facilities will enable us to quickly test and develop new systems that can meet the future needs of the industry. Further, by switching from manual processing to automated production, we will increase production capacity and remain price competitive.” NCE Maritime CleanTech, an industry cluster of which Corvus is a partner, provided consultancy and project development assistance for the planning of

Corvus‘ Orca energy storage system has been chosen for projects across a range of vessel types, including tugs, PSVs and ferries

Operators are increasingly turning to energy storage systems as a means of providing environmentally friendly power in shortrange contexts

the Norwegian factory. NCE Maritime CleanTech chief executive Hege Økland said: “With a battery factory in the Bergen area, the industry will have close access to core products that are vital to ensuring that shipping is more environmentally friendly and more profitable for the shipowners.” Established in Canada in 2009, Corvus expanded to Norway in 2015. Its investors include Equinor Technology Ventures, Norsk Hydro and BW Group of Singapore. It has worked on more than 140 projects, totalling over 100 MWh and 1.5M operating hours. The company has received several high-profile contracts in recent months across a range of sectors. Most recently, Corvus’ Orca ESS was chosen by Turkish ship designer and builder Navtek Naval Technologies for the world’s first batterypowered, all-electric tug. The Navtek NV-712 ZeeTUG is set for delivery in early 2019 and will operate primarily in Istanbul’s harbour for GISAS Shipbuilding Industry Co. With a storage capacity of 1,500 kWh, the Corvus ESS will power two Siemens propulsion motors with ABB thrusters and drive systems, integrated by BMA Technology. Corvus director of sales Roger Rosvold said: “With ever more stringent emissions controls in harbours and coastal shipping routes, we expect interest in the batterypowered operation of a wide variety of marine vessels to grow significantly.” In April, Stena Line and Callenberg Technology Group chose Corvus for the battery-power retrofit of Stena Jutlandica,

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


a ropax ferry that plies the route between Gothenburg in Sweden and Frederikshavn in Denmark. Co-financed by the European Union and the Swedish Transport Administration, the first stage of the retrofit will see Stena Jutlandica fitted with plug-in hybrid technology that can be charged from shore power, allowing the vessel to draw on battery power for bow thrusters and manoeuvring when berthing in port. The end goal is for the vessel to be fully battery-powered, which would require an estimated 50 MWh of stored energy for its 3 hr 25 min crossing time. Meanwhile, Norwegian Electric Systems (NES) and Corvus have signed a host of agreements for the Orca ESS to be fitted on several vessels on order for Norwegian ferry operator Fjord1. In November 2017, it was announced that Corvus would be providing a 2.9 MWh system for an all-electric ferry to operate on the Halhjem-Våge route in Hordaland. “This vessel will set a new standard for all-electric ferries,” said NES vice president of sales Stein Ruben Larsen, adding “With the Corvus Orca ESS, it will be able to sail further than existing allelectric ferries.” This development was followed in May of this year by a further agreement to provide two all-electric ferries that will operate on the Magerholm-Sykkylven route with a 2.9 MWh Orca ESS. At the time this deal was announced, Corvus noted it was also providing ESS systems for three similar Fjord1 ferries that would operate on the Hareid-Sulesund route. The five vessels, which measure 111 m in length and have a capacity for 120 cars, are expected to be delivered in 2019. Mr Rosvold said: “NES are skilled and experienced electrical-system integrators, and our close partnership with them in designing and delivering these innovative solutions is key to accelerating the adoption of energy storage systems.” Another contract was announced several days later, for Corvus to provide storage systems for shore stations at Brekstad and Valset in Norway, with a capacity of 565 kWh. Corvus had previously agreed to

The end goal of the Stena Jutlandica refit is for the vessel to be fully battery-operated (credit: Avrild Vågen)

provide the ferries that will operate on this route - which are fitted with a hybridelectric diesel propulsion system - with 1,137 kWh Orca ESS units. The Brekstad-Valset ferries will measure 66.4 m long by 14.2 m wide and will have capacity for 50 cars, six trucks and 195 passengers. The vessels are currently under construction and set to be delivered towards the end of the year. And in February, Seacor Marine chose Corvus’ Orca ESS for four platform supply vessels operating in the Gulf of Mexico. Seacor Marine manager of engineering Tim Clerc said: “We are confident in the energy saving and safety elements of the Corvus Orca ESS for Seacor Maya and [we are] keen to start migration of more of our vessels to this unique, environmentally friendly and highly efficient power solution.”

Ports and harbours benefit from batteries

Battery storage systems are being put to innovative use in port-focused areas, such as on harbour tugs and pilot boats.

“A typical pilot transfer can be completed with 30% of nominal battery capacity to spare”

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Tugboat designer Robert Allan has created an all-electric pilot vessel design for zero-emission transfers in ports. The RAlly 1600-E design has a range of five nautical miles, a top speed of 20 knots and is an aluminium version of a steel predecessor. Robert Allan said fully electric propulsion has “significantly reduced” operating costs and could allow a typical pilot transfer to be completed with 30% of nominal battery capacity to spare. The 16 m vessel has a fully electric twin-screw drivetrain and a bank of high energy-density batteries that would be recharged from shore power, as well as two small auxiliary generators for times when the pilot vessel has sailed beyond the range of its batteries and needs to return to a charging point. Battery systems consist of 70 modules of Spear SMAR-11N-224 units providing a capacity of 815 kWh. These are arranged in a separate compartment located in the middle of the vessel between the accommodation and the machinery space. These batteries are liquid-cooled and the entire space is air ventilated and fitted with a FirePro fire-extinguishing system. The batteries also power the boat’s normal electrical load of lighting and auxiliaries. The aluminium-hulled vessel has a similar weight to a steel diesel-electric pilot vessel, as the weight saved from the hull and the removal of the diesel engines ➤












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and fuel compensates for the mass of the electric drive and batteries. It has been designed with two 500 kW propulsion motors with permanent magnets and 750 V AC electric motors controlled by frequency convertors. Meanwhile, naval architects at Offshore Ship Designers (OSD) have developed a series of Azistern-e tugs with overall lengths ranging from 20 m to 26 m and bollard pull capabilities between 35 tonnes and 75 tonnes. ➤

Hybrid tugs could have 42% less fuel consumption with a diesel-electric and battery configuration, compared with a diesel-direct counterpart

OSD started this design project with the aim of creating a 22 m tug design that was compliant with IMO Tier III requirements. This would have hybrid propulsion, combining batteries with smaller diesel-electric arrangements for lower fuel consumption and emissions and fewer running hours when compared with diesel-only driven tugs. Over several years of research, OSD determined that hybrid tugs would have

42% less fuel consumption with a dieselelectric and battery configuration in the engineroom, compared with a dieseldirect counterpart. OSD technical manager Herm Jan de Vries said batteries reduce the load variations on engines and can provide enough power for most of the tug’s movements. Naval architects found there was a 75% reduction in engine running time when batteries are operating in parallel with diesel engines, based on an average sailing profile of a tug operating in a harbour in the Netherlands. Azistern 2035e is the smallest of three hybrid propulsion tug designs at 20 m long, with a design draught of 3.75 m. It would have a tonnage of less than 200 gt, but bollard pull of around 35 tonnes. This would be suitable for smaller harbours and inland waterways. OSD’s Azistern 2250e has a length of 21.45 m, draught of 4.6 m and bollard pull of 50 tonnes for operations in terminals and harbours. If an operator needs a terminal tug with more power it could use an Azistern 2575e design. This has a design capability of 75 tonnes of bollard pull from a 25 m tug. These designs have been approved by Bureau Veritas as electric propulsion tugs with unrestricted navigation. With hybrid propulsion, transit sailing and manoeuvring can be performed using the batteries with zero emissions. When maximum bollard pull is required for towage

work, diesel-electric propulsion is used with a boost in power from the batteries. “A hybrid system employed on a tug is the most fuel-efficient in terms of mobilisation and towing capability,” Mr de Vries said. Each battery pack would have a design lifetime of 10 years and would weigh around 17,000 kg. They would each take up a rack floor area of 17 m2 and would be directly coupled to a common DC-Bus on each switchboard.

Eco Marine Power launches scaleable battery packs

Japanese Eco Marine Power, along with strategic partners Furukawa Battery and Teramoto Iron Works, has released its UB-50-12 battery packs for marine, offshore and land-based applications. Available in 2.4 kWh and 3.6 kWh configurations, multiple packs can be installed together to provide a scaleable energy storage solution using a battery rack system. They incorporate Furukawa Battery Co's UltraBattery technology, which combines ultracapacitor and lead-acid battery technology to achieve higher energy efficiencies and a longer lifetime. Furukawa Battery general manager for overseas sales and marketing Yasuhiro Kodaka said: “Our UltraBattery technology is ideally suited for renewable energy applications and we look forward to promoting the use of renewable energy on ships together with Eco Marine Power.” MP

The RAlly 1600-E design has a range of five nautical miles and a top speed of 20 knots

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Controls with precision and superior quality



frequency converts and motors ELECTRICS | 89

Siemens expands converter and motor lineups Siemens has announced new developments to its products and expanded the range, offering new shaft heights and low-voltage motors


iemens has expanded the portfolios of its Simotics reluctance-motor range and its Sinamics frequency converter, including technology to aid with digitalisation. Two new shaft heights, AH90 and AH225, are being added to the Simotics reluctant-motor range in response to calls from manufacturers. The motors are available from 0.55 kW to 45 kW and with rated speeds of 1,500 rpm and 3,000 rpm. Siemens has equipped the motors and converters with a data matrix code, which provides users with easy access to technical data, spare parts information and operating instructions. The company has also announced a new lineup of explosionproof motors, the Simotics XP range. Siemens said the new line is future-proof and covers “all types of protection”. The XP range is technologically integrated, allowing for the production of a “digital twin” that will provide data that will be of use across the entire life-cycle of the product, for example aiding optimisation during the planning, engineering and commissioning phase, as well as providing information for after-sales services and restocking of spares. The XP range utilises a modular system, which makes it “an ideal solution” for original equipment manufacturers and project businesses alike, Siemens said. Intended for use in the chemical, oil and gas industries, the Chemstar subline of the XP range comprises low-voltage motors with preconfigured industry-specific option packages, such as category C4 high-level corrosion protection, stainless steel screws and bolts and extended warranty periods. Other options include reduced start-up current, motor monitoring, reinforced bearings and tropical-climate versions with paint finishes customised for offshore applications. The Simotics XP Chemstar motors are available in a range from 0.25 to 500 kW for either mains- or convertor-fed operation, and in a range of efficiency classes up to IE3 without jumps in shaft height. With the new Sinamics Reluctance Control license, launched in November 2017, users can have precise encoderless closedloop torque control and do away with the possibility of the motor stalling by enabling field-oriented closed-loop control, even when at a standstill. This allows Siemens’ synchronous reluctance motors to be operated with Sinamics S120 converters, enabling them to benefit from the functionalities of the modular S120 range. Siemens also recently announced improvements to both mechanical and electrical design for the Sinamics S120 Chassis-2 frequency converter. The revised models have a smaller footprint

The Reluctance Control License allows encoderless closed-loop torque control and does away with the possibility of the motor stalling at any time (credit:

than previous versions, by 30%-60%. They are fully compatible with their predecessors so can be easily integrated into existing setups. The standard pulse frequency is now 2.5 kHz, increasing system efficiency and minimising derating. The models also feature an innovative cooling concept and variable-speed fans. The S120 Chassis-2 is also available in ready-to-use cabinet format as the Sinamics S120 Cabinet Modules-2. Simotics reluctance motors and Sinamics converters are co-ordinated to work together in an integrated drive system that can be used in applications such as closed-loop control of pumps, fans and compressors. Siemens said that “compared to induction motors, they offer highly efficient operation, particularly in the partial load range”. The company has also brought wireless technology to its G120 converter series with the new Smart Access Module. This allows mobile devices such as tablets, smartphones and laptops to connect to the converter via any web browser, without the requirement for additional software. Users can then carry out converter commissioning, parameterisation and maintenance remotely. A labour-saving feature of the link is that the settings from one converter can be duplicated and sent to other mobile devices, which can then transmit the settings to other converters. G120 Smart Access Modules can also be swapped between different converters in the same series, allowing for them to be commissioned using just one device. When using this functionality, the module works as a portable storage facility with a web-based operator unit and wireless client link. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

90 | ELECTRICS frequency converts and motors

Wärtsilä sees high demand for integrated control system Wärtsilä’s new cargo-pump control system includes a frequency converter and a ‘take-me-home’ function in case of a main engine breakdown

Shaft generator

er Pow PTO er Pow PTH PTI/

Frequency converter

Thruster motor

Exhaust gas turbine generator

An integrated system with a frequency convertor allowing the cargo pump to be used to run the shaft generator and bow thruster (credit: Wärtsilä)


ärtsilä’s latest-generation controller includes a frequency converter package within the cargo-pump system that creates an opportunity to integrate its capabilities with other equipment on board. Wärtsilä Marine Solutions sales manager for pumps and valves Morten Brandborg explained “The frequency converter package is normally only utilised when the cargo-pumping system is in use, which is mainly during port stays – so for only a very limited time in the vessel’s overall operations. To derive more benefit from this technology we have made it possible to utilise the frequency converter package for other applications on board.” For example, the company’s latestgeneration cargo-pump control technology allows the frequency converter to be used in conjunction with the bow thruster. Mr Brandborg said that “Normally the bow thruster would either be of a fixed-pitch type, with its own separate frequency converter, or it would be of a controllablepitch type, which would represent a more expensive initial investment, with higher

maintenance costs. Either way, with our new system, the owner can benefit from improved operational efficiency and a reduction in costs.” Wärtsilä estimates that for a fixed-pitch bow thruster arrangement, the saving would be over €85,000 (US$98,854) per vessel. Moreover, the company points out, the bow thruster would have the same functionalities and no additional operational restrictions. Another example of the extended use of the cargo-pump control system enabled by Wärtsilä’s latest system relates to shaft-generator control. Mr Brandborg explained: “It is often a classification society requirement that vessels should have an alternative form of propulsion to be used as a ‘take-me-home’ function in case of a main engine breakdown. We have now made it possible to use the control system from the cargo-pump arrangement for this purpose, using the frequency converter to start and run the shaft generator.” Up to now this could only be achieved either by having a separate frequency

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

converter for the shaft generator, which is expensive and requires additional space on board, or by adopting a ponymotor solution, which presents the risk of damaging the clutch on the main shaft line. Wärtsilä believes its approach is lower cost and more reliable, and that it also creates an opportunity to introduce a booster mode. “This is especially useful when sailing in ice conditions, as we can now offer a solution where the shaft line can be boosted with additional power through the shaft generator,” said Mr Brandborg. The new integrated cargo-pump control option is considered particularly beneficial for smaller and medium-sized chemical and product tankers. A number of vessels of this type have been equipped with the newgeneration system in the past year, and several similar projects are now underway. Wärtsilä sees a growing demand for electric cargo-pump solutions and is developing some interesting new solutions, focused on using its digital and electric technology. The company recently announced a new shuttle tanker concept, developed in partnership with Teekay, which will feature Wärtsilä cargo and ballast pumps. For offloading operations, Wärtsilä can supply this new shuttle tanker design with either electric-driven pumps for pumproom installation, or with electric-driven deepwell cargo and ballast pumps that eliminate the need for a separate pump room and interconnecting pipelines in the cargo holds. The company points out that the space gained from eliminating the pump room can be used either to increase cargo capacity or to shorten the engineroom. The latter permits a reduced hull length, cutting building costs and allowing for better dynamic-positioning capability due to a leaner side profile. MP

MIND FOR MARINE What better way is there to cut emissions and future-proof your vessel than to combine a Power Drive with permanent magnet drive train technology to create a diesel electric, hybrid or fully electric system? As masters of DC-hub distribution and redundancy, we at Yaskawa Environmental Energy will help you switch to absolute endurance. Ask us how.

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What if…you had lightest driveshafts for your vessel?

frequency converts and motors ELECTRICS | 93

The perks of switching to DC power

Over the past decade, The Switch has fulfilled orders for more than 1,000 Power Drive units

Finnish company The Switch provides a tool for converting a vessel’s power to a DC grid from an AC grid, offering benefits that include future-proofed power sources


he Switch, based in Finland, is a provider of the DC-Hub, a system to convert a vessel’s power distribution to a DC grid from an AC grid that the company says can bring many benefits to a vessel. The system comprises multiple independent Power Drive units, which are basically frequency converters that can be installed either as a retrofit or as part of a vessel during the newbuild process. Each Power Drive is connected to the ship’s DC link and is assigned a separate load or source function. This system allows one Power Drive to carry the DC voltage and another to run different connected loads. With emissions regulations very much an issue, the DC-Hub allows dual-fuel

vessels to reduce both emissions and fuel consumption by stabilising loads in rough seas. The hub also makes it possible to run on only one genset and batteries. The hub also provides savings in both costs and space. It removes the need for installation of auxiliary equipment like transformers and AC switchboards, lowers fuel requirements and lengthens maintenance intervals by peak shaving. Another benefit is that the DC-Hub can be used to switch a vessel to battery-only operation, creating silent operations that can be useful in areas such as harbours. Because any power source can be connected to the DC-Hub, the vessel will be ready to benefit from future power sources as they become more efficient and enter service, extending the vessel’s useful working life. Redundancy can be provided by pairing

Each Power Drive frequency converter in The Switch's DC-Hub is assigned a separate load or source function

the DC-Hub with The Switch’s Electronic Bus Link breaker, which can cut and isolate a system error in 10 microseconds. This allows each DC-Hub to work independently and brings safety benefits. It was announced in May of this year that the Electronic Bus Link had successfully undergone a factory acceptance test (FAT) in Trondheim, carried out under the supervision of DNVGL and the unit’s end customers, whose identity was not disclosed. The Switch Norway general manager Asbjorn Halsebakke said: “The EBL is a crucial part of the DC-Hub.” “It is paramount the EBL performs to the highest standards of quality, efficiency and reliability,” he added, noting that it connects the vessel’s DC-Hubs with diesel engines and makes sure the vessel is capable of operating efficiently, even in the event of a critical fault. Three units were put through their paces in the test, with another three still to undergo the same process before they are delivered and installed aboard an offshore support vessel. Over the past 10 years, The Switch has fulfilled orders for more than 1,000 Power Drive units to hundreds of vessels and has also delivered 35 permanent magnet shaft generators. In the maritime segment, The Switch also provides permanent magnet technology, shaft generators and electricpropulsion solutions. The company is also active in the wind, wave and tidal, energy storage, combined heat and power and turbo segments. Acquired by Yaskawa Corporation in July 2014, it was announced in April of this year that The Switch was to become that company’s European environmental energy division. At the time of the acquisition Yaskawa announced it was making a “multimillion-euro investment” in The Switch to boost its research and development capabilities and acquire new equipment for its factory to serve as a test centre for advanced drive trains up to 15 MW.” MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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powerplants ELECTRICS | 95

Hydrogen fuel cells provide emissions-free power generation An innovative project in California is testing the suitability of fuel cells for marine use, writes Ed Martin


he first commercial fuel-cell ferry in the world, Water-GoRound, will use hydrogen fuel-cells provided by Ontario, Canada-based Hydrogenics to generate power. With a targeted launch date of 2019, the company behind the ferry, Golden Gate Zero Emission Marine (GGZEM), intends the vessel to be “a demonstration to the commercial and regulatory community at large” and its performance will be monitored by Sandia National Laboratories, one of the US Government’s National Nuclear Security Administration research and administration labs. The project was awarded a US$3M grant by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in June 2018. The 21 m aluminium catamaran will have a capacity of 84 passengers and was designed by Incat Crowther; it will be built by San Francisco-based Bay Ship and Yacht. The vessel has a top speed of 22 knots and will be powered by 360 kW-worth of Hydrogenics fuel cells, alongside lithium-ion battery packs. It will carry a 264 kg tank array of 250-bar compressed hydrogen, allowing for up to two full days of operation. Propulsion will come from two 300 kW shaft motors, while 100 kWh batteries in the vessels hulls will boost power to achieve full speed. Following its launch, Water-Go-Round will undergo a threemonth study period in San Francisco Bay, during which time Sandia National Laboratories will gather and assess performance data. CARB will use this data to assess the suitability of the technology for wider marine use. A fuel cell comprises an anode, a cathode and an electrolyte membrane and functions by hydrogen being passed through the anode and oxygen through the cathode. Hydrogen molecules are split at the anode into electrons and protons, with the protons passing through the electrolyte membrane and electrons being forced through a circuit, generating a current and excess heat. Protons, electrons and oxygen combine at the cathode to produce water molecules. The technology allows hydrogen to be directly converted to power with zero emissions. A hydrogen-battery hybrid system was chosen over a purely electric system as it affords greater flexibility, with Water-Go-Round’s website describing hydrogen fuel-cell technology as “the best zero-emissions technology for commercial maritime operators to

Water-Go-Round will carry enough hydrogen to operate for two days continuously

maintain operational flexibility, commercial viability and regulatory compliance”. Other benefits of fuel cells include their lack of moving parts, resulting in near-silent operation, and scalability, meaning that fuel cells can be “stacked” and combined into larger systems. GGZEM chief executive Joseph W. Pratt said: “Hydrogenics is well known as an industry leader and an excellent partner in delivering advanced hydrogen-based power and fuelling solutions. Their fuel cells have a proven track record and incorporate numerous innovative features that result in high efficiency and industry-leading reliability, making it a perfect fit for our integrated systems. I look forward to combining our capabilities on this initiative to reduce pollutants and greenhouse gases in the maritime industry.” Headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, Hydrogenics specialises in providing hydrogen generation, energy storage and hydrogen power models. It has manufacturing sites in Germany, Belgium and Canada and service centres in Russia, Europe, the US and Canada. GGZEM was launched in 2017 and bills itself as a provider of clean and quiet marine power systems that “comply with all current and future environmental regulations, meet rising customer demand for sustainable systems, and reduce total cost of vessel ownership”. Mr Pratt previously worked at Sandia National Laboratories, where he led the SF-Breeze study into the feasibility of fuel cellpowered ferries. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

96 | ELECTRICS powerplants

Torqeedo and WhisperPower develop DC generator A new generator has come to market branded as a back-up battery charger for vessels using a Deep Blue Hybrid electric-propulsion system

WhisperPower’s generator provides back-up charging capacity for Torqeedo’s Deep Blue Hybrid system


hisperPower and Torqeedo have collaborated to develop a generator specifically designed as a back-up battery charger for vessels equipped with a Deep Blue Hybrid electric-propulsion system. The 25 kW 350 V DC variable-speed diesel generator has been named the Range Extender by Torqeedo, and acts as a backup battery charger for that company’s BMW-I lithium batteries. Based on WhisperPower’s ‘Genverter’ principle, the speed of the generator is adjusted to the most efficient speed, resulting in minimised fuel consumption, noise, vibration and exhaust emissions. Only 295 g of fuel is consumed per kWh of electricity and the noise level is 54 dB at a distance of 7 m. The Deep Blue Hybrid system offers

largely emission-free sailing, with the BMW-I lithium batteries able to be charged via renewable energy sources, such as solar panels and hydro generators. For longer trips, or if the hotel load requires more power than can be supplied by the batteries, the Advanced Hybrid Control System automatically manages and starts up the DC generator. WhisperPower founder and chief executive Roel ter Heide said: “As electricpropulsion systems need more and more power, a back-up or extra-energy system is becoming increasingly necessary. “Working together provides an excellent opportunity for both Torqeedo and WhisperPower to excel in green propulsion systems.” Torqeedo co-founder and chief executive Christoph Ballin said:

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

“Torqeedo is very happy with the co-operation with WhisperPower. The product synergy is perfect.” Drachten, Netherlands-based WhisperPower specialises in the development and production of smart energy systems incorporating compact and silent variable-speed generators, energy storage, high-quality power electronics and a range of system components. Torqeedo, based in Gilching, Germany, manufactures clean electric propulsion systems in the 0.5-100 kW range for both commercial and leisure vessels. It offers 32 electric drives ranging from 1-80 hp and offers accessories such as solar charging technology, lithium batteries and a smartphone app. The company is owned by DEUTZ AG, a Porz, Germany-based engine manufacturer. MP


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powerplants ELECTRICS | 99

DEIF genset controller software updated DEIF has unveiled software updates for its genset controllers and paralleling and protection unit, with benefits including improved displays, reduced fuel consumption and time savings

genset controllers allow up to 32 gensets to be handled by a single powerplant. The update adds a new warm-up sequence after generator breaker synchronisation, which means power will remain at the lowest stage until a pre-set temperature or input is reached. This results in the generator running on a lower load until it has warmed up, bringing the benefits of lower wear and tear and reducing the time taken to reach optimal operating temperature. The update also brings the AGCs into line with US National Fire Protection Association requirements. It achieves this by adding a start sequence to the integrated battery test functionality and the option to display charger output current and voltage.


anish provider of control systems for generators, DEIF Group, has released software updates incorporating several new features for its PPU 330 paralleling and protection unit and AGC-4 and AGC200 genset controllers. The PPU 330 update includes a shaft-generator regulation feature. Without this feature, the process of shifting shaft generators requires a complex process of starting up a diesel generator and synchronising and deloading the first shaft generator, before synchronising to the second. The new feature allows the second shaft generator to start synchronising while the first is still running, saving time and reducing running hours of the diesel generator, consequently reducing fuel consumption and maintenance requirements. The maximum number of transistor outputs is increased to 12 and digital inputs to 16 by the update, from a previous maximum of four and 12, respectively. DEIF’s upcoming CODESYS add-on for the PPU 330 – which will allow users to create their own power-management systems without the need for extra programmable logic controllers – is also fully supported by the update. New features in the update for the AGC-4 and AGC200

Fischer Panda UK receives type approval Members of the International Association of Classification Societies board have granted type approval to Fischer Panda UK’s generator range, covering the 4000s Neo and the iSeries Panda 45i genset.

DEIF’s update to the PPU 330 simplifies shifting shaft generators

Fischer Panda UK sales and marketing director Chris Fower said: “We are very pleased to provide further confidence to our customers and partners that we supply reliable products that fulfil the highest quality standards. “This new endorsement will be very valuable to us in assuring new customers and dealing with projects that require recognised approval, such as Lloyd’s or DNV.” The full type-approval classification

achieved by Fischer Panda is as follows: Lloyd’s Register, Bureau Veritas, Croatian Register of Shipping/Austrian Veritas (Hrvatski Registar Brodova), Registro Italiano Navale, American Bureau of Shipping, DNV GL, Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK), Russian Maritime Register of Shipping, Polish Register of Shipping (Polski Rejestr Statków), China Classification Society, Korean Register of Shipping and Indian Register of Shipping. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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Ponant’s newbuild brings green technology to cruise ships Ponant’s newbuilding director Mathieu Petiteau told Rebecca Moore about the new technology and energyefficiency features on the first of its Explorersclass vessels


he first cruise ship of Ponant’s Explorersclass was delivered in June this year and employs technology not seen in the luxury cruise operator’s other cruise ships. The ice-class vessel Le Lapérouse was built at Norway’s Vard Shipyard, a subsidiary of Fincantieri. At 131 m in length, it has 92 cabins and suites, with 110 crew members. Energy efficiency was a key consideration for this vessel. The efficiency of the propeller has been boosted by using a variable pitch propeller within a variable-speed propulsion model. RollsRoyce provided the variable pitch propeller and the electric propulsion is provided by ABB. The set-up involves two shaft lines driven by electric motors, which have controllable pitch propellers at the end. “The use of controllable pitch improves the communication between the

hull and the propeller,” Ponant newbuilding and R&D director Mathieu Petiteau explained, noting this would lead to fuel savings of approximately 3% annually. The hull and the bulbous bow have been optimised, with the latter developed to suit lowspeed travelling. This is a change for Ponant, as for its other cruise ships, the bulbous bow was developed to suit a speed above 16 knots. In contrast, Le Lapérouse has a maximum 15-knots speed and an operating speed of 10 knots. “We do not need a big bulbous bow made for a high-speed vessel,” said Mr Petiteau. “It is designed for low speed.” This change has boosted energy efficiency. Another major boost to the energy efficiency of the vessel is the implementation of a central heat recovery system. Ponant

PARTICULARS Le Lapérouse: Length: 131 m Passenger capacity: 184 Staterooms: 92 Crew: 110 Shipyard: Vard Class: Bureau Veritas

Le Lapérouse was built at Norway's Vard Shipyard (Credit: Ponant)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


designed the solution with Vard. It recovers heat from the main engines which is then used for the hotel load, including air conditioning and for potable water. “We had a basic [system] on board Le Boreal, used mainly for distillate water. This was used 5% of the time, but this system takes energy 100% of time from the engines,” said Mr Petiteau. The company decided not to use scrubbers and has instead plumped for marine gasoil.

Green focus

Other environmentally friendly measures include complete treatment of all fuel sludge carried out on board. The company has invested in a new generation of Alfa Laval’s pure bilge oily water separator for bilge water treatment, avoiding discharge of bilge water. “We are able to treat everything on board in a very efficient manner,” Mr Petiteau said, adding this was a new addition to the fleet. Another new feature is the Green Pilot system, which is used to save energy. Sensors measure the exact fuel consumption of every

The same engines have been used as on Le Boreal and its sister ships – four Wartsila 8L20 engines with eight cylinders each. The only change represented by the engines is that they are now compliant with IMO Tier 3 regulations, because they are now fitted with a selective catalytic reduction system (SCR) to reduce NOx concentration in the exhaust gas. The addition of SCR was a challenge because they “take space in the tank plan of the ship, which is quite a challenge and for such a small vessel this is not easy at all.” Le Lapérouse received the international Cleanship notation from Bureau Veritas as a result of the environmentally friendly equipment used. The class society said the criteria for its notation are: limitation of sea pollution stowage on board; ability to transfer ashore; and diminution in release of polluting substances into seawater such as hydrocarbons, sewage, noxious products, garbage, grey and black water. The limitation of air pollution levels of greenhouse and ozone-depleting product emissions are also limited and checked.

Snapshot CV

Mathieu Petiteau (Ponant)

“The addition of a selective catalytic reduction system was a challenge because they take space in the tank plan of the ship” engine. Mr Petiteau commented: “It will give us very accurate fuel meter consumption, which means we will know exactly the fuel consumption of every engine, which will allow development of decisions about which engines to start and stop, in order to work out the most effective way to save fuel.” The system was developed by Vard Electro. Ponant has also added equipment to save HVAC costs. “Lots of passengers want to keep their balcony doors open, while the air conditioning is still on in the room,” commented Mr Petiteau. To overcome this challenge, sensors send a signal that the door has been opened and to reduce the air conditioning, placing the system in economy mode. “It is a simple but effective solution,” said Mr Petiteau. An innovative environmentally friendly solution has also been applied to the refrigeration solutions. For the first time, Ponant is using a refrigerant that has a lower global warming potential than standard. “This has not been an easy thing,” said Mr Petiteau. “It is difficult to find this type of gas and it costs more as the compressor needs to be modified to be able to work with this refrigerant.”

Underwater lounge

The Blue Eye multi-sensorial underwater lounge is a world first. Ponant explained it will allow passengers to look out on to the seabed via two portholes in the form of a cetaceous eye. Mr Petiteau told Marine Propulsion “Never before has such a thing been done, it is just incredible to me and a revolution in shipbuilding.” He said creating the lounge within the hull involved a lot of challenges – the biggest was to demonstrate the strength of the complete system would provide the same safety level as using steel within the hull. Creating the Blue Eye lounge involved replacing some of the steel of the hull with glass. “We needed to demonstrate, in terms of grounding or ice navigation, there would not be less safety,” explained Mr Petiteau. “It was the most difficult thing to demonstrate, but we believe now that the system is even stronger [than using steel in the hull].” He explained this was achieved by the “way the glass is integrated into the steel frame and how the steel frame was integrated into the hull”. Ponant worked in close co-operation with the maker of the glass and with Hamburg University of Technology. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Mathieu Petiteau started his career at Ponant as chief engineer/ shipbuilding cruise ship consultant in 2009, where he was site manager for the building survey of the luxury cruise ship L'Austral, assistant site manager for the building survey of Le Boreal and chief engineer for both ships. In 2011, he was project manager and site manager for building Le Soleal and Le Lyrial. He was appointed newbuilding director in 2015 and since December 2017 has been both newbuild and research and development director.




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Brunvoll and Stadt look towards a green future Customers are demanding integrated propulsion and thruster packages and looking for increasingly greener solutions


n March 2017, thruster-maker Brunvoll acquired Scana Propulsion, a supplier of gear and propeller systems with associated control systems, and its subsidiaries Scana Volda and Scana Mar-El. At the time, Brunvoll chief executive Odd Tore Finnøy described the goal of the takeover as “to create a win-win situation for both companies, which together can offer our customers even better and comprehensive solutions for both propulsion and operation of advanced vessels.” Marine Propulsion’s sister title Norwegian Solutions spoke with Mr Finnøy in May 2018, just over a year on from the acquisition, to hear how the merged entity was faring and what he felt the future might hold for Brunvoll and Norway’s maritime industries more generally. “Strategically we were very interested in increasing our product portfolio to deliver

Odd Tore Finnøy (Brunvoll): “We see the top-level focus on new and sustainable development goals coming into operation on every project we are working with”

bigger projects, to deliver a bigger package to the customer which they were asking us for,” Mr Finnøy said of the acquisition. He explained that Scana Propulsion’s product range, especially regarding forward propulsion, complimented that offered by Brunvoll, which focuses on thrusters for manoeuvring and positioning. Customers were keen to have “one common responsibility for the package that covers propulsion, manoeuvring and positioning of the ship,” and while independently Brunvoll and Scana Propulsion were unable to provide this, the acquisition made it possible for the companies to jointly offer this. Mr Finnøy noted that Brunvoll has delivered contracts on this basis in several vessel segments, including ropax vessels, special cargo tankers, fishery vessels and expedition cruise vessels. Discussing the uptick in the oil price, Mr Finnøy said in general he had not yet noticed an increased demand for newbuilds. “Where we see the improvements coming already is in the aftersales service market,” he said, noting vessels that have been cold-stacked for a while but are now receiving new charters or being sold require recertification and may have service issues before they can re-enter service. This has led to Brunvoll’s aftersales market experiencing a boom, he said, noting that along with oil and gas vessels winning new charters, the cruise market has also been an area of growth. Mr Finnøy said the US EPA’s requirement for environmentally acceptable lubricants to be used on vessels to be granted a vessel general permit (VGP) has also resulted in a “high load in the aftersales market.” These three factors – vessels coming out of lay-up, the growth in the cruise market, and the EPA’s VGP requirements – have acted as growth engines for the aftersales market, he added. Looking to the future, Mr Finnoy said: “The market in general is improving and several segments have for several years had good conditions and a higher number of newbuilds,” citing fish-farming, fishing vessels, special cargo vessels, ropax vessels and expedition cruise vessels as examples. He noted offshore oil and gas had been the market driver for many years and when newbuild activity in this area for the Norwegian

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


shipbuilding sector dried up completely, both Brunvoll and the wider sector were keen to know what would come next. Mr Finnoy believes this question has now been answered. “Almost two years ago we started speaking about green shipping – environmental and sustainable shipping and maritime activities. I think everyone is a little bit surprised by how fast this is going”, he said. He believes there are certain segments that are going “very, very hard” down the green shipping route and acting as technology drivers. Looking at shuttle car ferries in particular, Mr Finnøy noted that new contracts for such vessels – frequently from state-owned bodies – have very tough demands for either no emissions or very low emissions. The result has been the development of fully electric vessels that make use of battery banks, charging when they dock at either end of their route to load up with vehicles. Such innovations are both technology and market drivers, Mr Finnøy said, and are spreading to other sectors. “Other shipowners are starting to ask for

solutions with less fuel consumption, less power and energy consumption” he said, adding some owners are even looking at 100% battery-driven vessels. He noted LNG is increasingly in demand, including as part of a hybrid solution with batteries for utilisation in peak shaving, in lots of areas, including in the cruise, fishery and shuttle tanker sectors. “This is affecting us of course, we have to be very focused on energy consumption to increase the overall efficiency rate,” he said. During the years of difficult market conditions, Brunvoll has continued to make efforts in both business and product development in a range of areas. “We see the market really asks that every project we are working with has some interest in reducing fuel or energy usage,” he said. “It is an interesting subject, how the market is developing, and we see the top-level focus on new and sustainable development goals coming into operation on every project we are working with – the shipowners, the shipyards, the ship designers, everyone is occupied by this,” he said, adding “It is good to experience for all of us.”

“Almost two years ago we started speaking about green shipping – I think everyone is a little bit surprised by how fast this is going”

Stadt brings its lean propulsion to world markets Gjerdsvika-based Stadt has seen its no-loss lean drives installed on two of Topaz’s anchor-handling tug supply (AHTS) vessels, and has also targeted the US market for growth this year. Dubai-based Topaz has installed Stadt’s technology on Topaz Master and Topaz Mariner, AHTS vessels with a bollard pull of 90 tonnes, a dynamic positioning class of DP2 and a dwt of 2,000. Each AHTS measures 64.8 m long by 16 m wide. Stadt announced in January this year it had signed an agreement with WA Technical Sales for representation in the Gulf of Mexico, as part of a push to target the global maritime market. Stadt chief executive Hallvard Slettevoll said the company sees a general trend toward full diesel-electric or LNG-electric solutions for a range of ships, both commercial and naval, and that this is reflected in the US market. He added “Our lean-propulsion technology represents unique stealth and noise-free technology, a game-changer for naval ships in particular. We at Stadt register a tremendous interest for our extremely compact and robust patented solutions worldwide.” The no-loss drive technology claims big advantages over traditional PWM (pulse width modulation) technology, because it is free from electric disturbances. It sends voltage and current to the electric motor and back to the main switchboard in the form of a sine wave, which results in low harmonic disturbance. The electric drives can be used alongside any main shipboard power source, including diesel, LNG, hybrid, and battery. According to Stadt, this configuration offers a sustainable solution, because it reduces fuel consumption by up to 6%, reduces NOx, SOx and CO2 emissions, reduces maintenance and high redundancy, and noise. It has an estimated lifetime of 25 years and is available up to 100 MW in voltages up to 15 kV. Stadt’s lean technology is fitted aboard more than 30 ships, the company said. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Stadt CEO Hallvard Slettevoll (left) sees a general trend toward full diesel-electric or LNG-electric solutions

BOURBON holds Auction on ILS! Auction Opens September 11 Visit



BOURBON is auctioning diesel engines, alternators, and other auxiliary equipment. Opening time on Tuesday, September 11th is 8:30 am CDT (13:30 UTC). Visit for an early view of the parts list. The ILS Auction is a great vehicle for selling your surplus inventory. ILS provides a simple to use, online auction platform enabling you to get the most exposure for your inventory and to maximize your gains through a competitive bidding process. Email to sell your surplus.


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3D printing could reduce the space needed for spare parts storage and save on cost and CO2 emissions when spare parts are delivered (credit: Monique Randolph)

The future of spares supply? When it comes to delivering supplies to vessels at sea, technology like drones and 3D printing could make supply vessels and helicopters redundant, writes Ed Martin


mprovements in load-handling and range could soon see drones being used to carry spares from shore to ship in place of manned vessels, while 3D printing may prove even more revolutionary, enabling products to be manufactured on board and doing away with supply vessels entirely. Although the technology remains some way off widespread adoption, proponents of 3D printing are keen to highlight the benefits, which include reducing supplychain requirements to a bare minimum. Essentially, vessels would simply need to carry enough raw materials to fabricate new components on board.

It might sound like science fiction, but the technology is here and it is just a matter of time before it becomes commonplace. In September 2017, Naval Technology reported that Marinebedrijf Koninklijke Marine (MKM), the organisation responsible for maintaining the Royal Netherlands Navyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s vessels, planned to scan the entire Dutch military fleet, using the 3D images created as a basis for 3D-printed replacement parts. MKM CNC co-ordinator Ben Jansen told the naval journal: â&#x20AC;&#x153;In most cases, parts for the ships are being reverse engineered or newly created; this is especially the case in older navy vessels where the suppliers of the components no longer exist.â&#x20AC;? While the initial 3D scanning required may be time-consuming and require an outlay cost, applying the method in a commercial setting could mean significant savings in both time and money, especially for parts that may be hard to track down or for which real-world fabricating tools no longer exist. Additional benefits include reduced

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


CO2 emissions, with fewer supply vessels needed, and real-time access to updated designs for ship systems. In fact, an industry consortium is piloting a project to test 3D printing as an alternative to housing spare parts on ships and offshore facilities. Green Ship of the Future – which includes J Lauritzen, Maersk Line, Maersk Tankers, Maersk Drilling, MAN Energy Solutions, DNV GL and Copenhagen Business School – are partnering with 3D-printing technology specialists Create it Real in the project, which is being financed by the Danish Maritime Fund. The collaborative project will deliver secured, built-to-order 3D printers, training tools and videos to ships and drilling stations. The consortium intends for crews to “learn the whole process independently” in order to become “self-sufficient” in the 3D-printing process, according to a statement. J Lauritzen’s head of performance management Sverre Patursson Vange said “3D-printing technology is developing rapidly, and we believe it is ready for utilisation in the maritime industry. However, the harsh environment and the top priority to safety calls for precautions.” Involving representatives from the “majority of the supply chain” in

Leo Jeoh of Airbus and Marius Johansen of Wilhelmsen at Posidonia, where the two companies signed the MoU

deliver spare parts, documents, water test kits and 3D-printed consumables to vessels at anchorage from the Marina South Pier in the Port of Singapore. Airbus will handle approvals from relevant aviation authorities and maintenance and operations of the UAS and control systems.

MKM plans to scan the entire Dutch military fleet, using the 3D images created as a basis for 3D-printed replacement parts the pilot programme represents one precaution, according to the group. Intellectual property rights and the secure transmission of files present other challenges, which Create it Real has addressed through the end-to-end encryption of files.

Shore-to-ship drone trials begin

Elsewhere, Norway’s Wilhelmsen Ships Service has announced it is partnering with Airbus to pilot the use of drones to deliver spare parts. Starting in Q3 2018, the two companies will be utilising Airbus’ Skyways unmanned air system (UAS) to

Wilhelmsen will set up the necessary maritime and port operations, gain relevant approvals from non-aviation authorities, secure customers and ensure UAS operations are compliant with maritime safety and security regulations. Wilhelmsen commercial vice president Marius Johansen said: “When we announced last year that we were pursuing drone delivery, we were greeted with a fair amount of scepticism, but our collaboration with Airbus shows we really do mean business.” “Drone delivery is a perfect fit for our agency business. As part of our standard husbandry services, we organise the

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

delivery of essential spares, medical supplies and cash to master via launch boat, day in and day out all over the world,” he added. He noted that delivery by drone is more cost effective, quicker and “frankly safer for all involved”, adding that drone delivery can cost on average 90% less than launch boats, while mitigating the risks involved with making launch deliveries and having negligible environmental impact. Airbus project lead Leo Jeoh said: “This collaboration with Wilhelmsen, the first of its kind in the region, gives us a unique test bed where we can trial, refine and shape the future of shore-to-ship drone technologies. This also serves as an exciting opportunity to bring together the strong domain expertise of both Airbus and Wilhelmsen, to pioneer the future of UAS in the maritime industry.” The companies signed a memorandum of understanding at the Posidonia maritime conference in Athens. This followed a year of planning alongside the Singapore Maritime Port Authority and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore. An initial trial will take place over a two-week period, with a command centre and delivery centre established on the pier to make deliveries to ships within 3 km in the Eastern Anchorage. A second delivery station will also be established ➤


Engineering Dutch Quality Come and meet us at SMM Hamburg From 4 until the 7th of september TULLP will again participate at the SMM Hamburg exhibition. During the show the company will showcase their product portfolio, and will inform you about the products and services TULLP has to offer for separation and filtration equipment. The TULLP sales team is looking forward to meet you and kindly invites you at stand 325 in hall A1.


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Four other Norwegian companies are also collaborating to investigate the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) or drones to transport cargo between offshore vessels and offshore installations. Partners in the Safer Logistics from Unmanned Logistics Helicopter research project include offshore support vessel operator Olympic Subsea, Griff Aviation, Norut (the Northern Research Institute) and Stable, which specialises in motioncompensation technology.

iMarine Software’s Seaproc e-procurement hub, enabling ship operators using Tero Marine software on their vessels to connect directly with more than 50,000 global maritime vendors. iMarine Software said this connection between both platforms “provides significant transaction efficiencies for the marine supply chain”. TM Master is an integrated marine information system, comprising modules for planned maintenance, procurement, crew management and quality assurance.

Tero Marine has connected its fleet-management program TM Master to iMarine Software’s Seaproc e-procurement hub Norut is leading the project and has experience in developing autonomous control systems for UAVs and of operating them in challenging weather conditions in northern waters. Griff Aviation develops and manufactures drones that have capacity to carry heavy cargo. The project is drawing on expertise from the research community at the faculty of engineering and technology at the Arctic University of Norway in Narvik, which has extensive experience in automated drone operations. Stable’s role is to develop a control system so that drones can operate from a moving platform. To this end, it is developing a stable platform for take-off and landing of the drone. The platform will be placed in a container on a ship’s deck, which would also act as a hangar for the drone. Olympic Subsea is an active development partner in the project, which is supported financially by the Research Council of Norway.

Tero Marine said this helps increase operational efficiency, control and safety for ship operators. Greek tanker owner Pleiades Shipping is now using SeaProc e-procurement for spares purchasing. This required a connection between SeaProc and Pleiades Shipping’s fleetmanagement system, which was supplied by ABS Nautical Systems. Pleiades Shipping runs a fleet of 14

Panamax and Aframax crude tankers and chemical/product carriers. These operate along worldwide trading routes, primarily between North and South America, the Caribbean and south east Asia.

App alerts when spares run low

ShipSure, an app version of V.Group’s Shipsure program, was launched in January this year and provides critical spares alerts, allowing clients to easily see when they need to order new parts. The ShipSure app offers shipowners control, transparency and real-time information. It allows customers to check whether planned maintenance is overdue and to request copies of test certificates. It can also generate spares alerts or compare budgeted running costs against real costs and generate PDF invoices for procurement. It uses GPS to monitor factors such as fuel consumption, sailing speed and conditions at sea to deliver data in real time. Preference settings allow users to decide how much information they receive. They can also use in-built messaging systems to request additional data. V.Group said ShipSure is “for anyone involved in the safe and efficient running of a commercial vessel”, from shipowners to captains, crew, and onshore management teams. As well as the app, which is available on both Android and iOS, it can be accessed via a traditional desktop piece of software. MP

Connecting fleets with e-procurement

By connecting e-procurement platforms to fleet-management software, the purchase of spares and supplies can be done seamlessly. This has been the goal of Norwegian fleet-management software developer Tero Marine and US-headquartered e-commerce company iMarine Software. Tero Marine has connected its fleetmanagement program TM Master to

Airbus and Wilhelmsen will trial deliveries from shore-to-ship using the Skyways UAS

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IMO’s greenhouse gas agreement – what will the impact be on shipowners and operators?

Niels Bjørn Mortensen considers the implications of IMO’s groundbreaking agreement to halve emissions from shipping

Most consider the GHG strategy as being visionary and a major achievement by IMO


t its 72nd session, IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) adopted an initial strategy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping by at least 50% by 2050. GHG has been on IMO’s agenda for about three decades and other GHG reduction measures have been adopted previously. In 2011, IMO adopted the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) and in 2016, the IMO GHG Roadmap was approved, including the mandatory data-collection system. The newly adopted GHG strategy contains concrete targets to be achieved by fixed deadlines and, combined with the above measures, means that shipping will be the first industry to be globally regulated on GHG. The concrete targets, based on 2008 levels, in the IMO GHG strategy are: • Reduce CO2 emissions per transport work by at least 40% by 2030, aiming for a

70% reduction by 2050. • Reduce total CO2 emissions from shipping by at least 50% by 2050. These targets are believed to be consistent with the Paris Agreement, which was adopted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 2015. The overall IMO vision is in alignment with the Paris Agreement, to phase out GHG emissions from shipping as soon as possible within this century. The Paris Agreement aims to reduce the global temperature increase to 2°C above the pre-industrial level, while pursuing efforts to limit the increase to 1.5°C.

The industry response

The response to IMO’s GHG strategy from the affected players varied widely, from “unambitious”, “too little, too late” to “unrealistic and impossible to achieve”. The majority, however, consider the GHG strategy as being visionary and a major achievement by IMO. Appreciating the duration of the GHG

debate in IMO, during which targets and dates were all “pies in the sky”, it became clear that a concrete text to draw clear targets and clear deadlines was of utmost importance. The GHG Strategy text is, however, just the first step – the real work is only just about to commence. Shipowners and operators are already asking themselves a number of questions, such as “How will this be implemented?” and “How will this affect my business?” IMO will convene another intersessional working group meeting later in 2018, tasked with developing a programme of follow-up actions to the strategy. Implementation will also feature prominently in future MEPC sessions.

Flag states and CBDR

One of the obstacles to be overcome involves whether the agreement can be implemented in a way that is flag neutral. When discussing GHG issues in IMO, as well as in other forums, developing

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


countries claim their right to “common, but differentiated responsibilities” (CBDR), a concept which was adopted into the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. The CBDR concept basically means that developed countries should lead the way on GHG reductions and be more committed than developing countries. A primary argument used to justify the concept is that developed countries have been emitting massive amounts of GHG for centuries, whereas developing countries only started recently. Developed countries also have access to financial and technical resources outside the reach of developing countries. It is quite easy to acknowledge the arguments when they relate to land-based emission sources. When it comes to ships moving freely on the oceans, which can change flag overnight, the CBDR concept is unworkable. If it is applied and results in fewer obligations on ships operating under flags of developing countries, one could anticipate the result of massive shift of flag from developed countries to developing countries. Flag states will, via the data-collection system, report to IMO, which can then monitor shipping emissions. Will IMO then allocate allowable emission amounts based on the fleet size to the flag state?

Enforcement and emissions trading

The next big question that pops up: how to police emissions? Will ships, or shipping companies which emit more CO2 than is allocated based on flag state and fleet size, be fined? And where would

these fines go? Would they go into the treasury of individual flag states or be passed on to IMO? If IMO takes payment, the body would then need to set up a collection unit. Could shipping companies purchase emission allowances from other companies across flags or even from other industries – in the way that carbon credits are traded – and what mechanisms would be put in place to control and regulate such trades? If this aspect of the above scenario becomes a reality, it could essentially become an emissions trading scheme, introduced on the back of the legislation. If this is indeed the way a global reduction in emissions will be handled, there is no need to make the process an afterthought. IMO could at least begin with a plan, a definition and a label.

Realistic targets?

Does shipping have to be specifically concerned with the targets agreed in IMO at MEPC 72? According to BIMCO deputy secretary general Lars Robert Petersen, the IMO targets are ambitious, yet achievable. So, industry acknowledges that relative improvement is within reach. It is important to recall that the targets need not be achieved by each and every individual ship, but by the industry at large. The general increase in ship sizes, in particular for container ships and bulk carriers, makes these ships far more efficient when measured on a miles per tonne basis. Compared to 2008 (the base year),

shipping is already far more efficient. Carbon efficiency improvements are also the tool that will help the industry reach the absolute objective of at least a 50% reduction by 2050 compared to 2008. With regards to this absolute target, it must be noted that 95% of the merchant fleet by 2050 will be ships not even designed today and the EEDI might be one of the tools to drive the increase in carbon efficiency of the future fleet. Carbon efficiency can also be improved by looking at the total transport chain. Waiting time at anchorage outside ports is one element which increases the total CO2 emission from ships and finding ways to eliminate waiting time is important for realisation of the 2050 objective. A wild card in the emissions picture in 2050 is how world trade will develop. One projection from IMO’s 2014 GHG study was a 250% increase in shipping’s emissions, a figure which Mr Petersen describes as unrealistic, mainly for the following reasons: • This scenario assumes that the world would not agree to any of the Paris goals, and that oil and coal remain the primary energy source of the future. The temperature increase in the scenario would be about 5°C with shipping still emitting about 3.3% of total global CO2 by 2050. • The projected growth in world trade in the study is considered overly optimistic. When accumulated over several decades, the 3-5% range used as the starting point for global annual GDP growth is far too broad to provide accurate projections. Finally, Mr Petersen emphasises that achieving the 50% absolute reduction by 2050 will require all players to work together on smart new technology, better ship designs and new CO2-neutral or carbon-free fuels.

What are the business impacts?

IMO‘s ruling will have long-lasting repercussions for shipowners and operators alike

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Returning to the rhetorical question “how will this affect my business?”, with so much left to decide, that is anyone’s guess at this point in time. A simple truth could be that owners of ships with the lowest carbon footprints will be in the best position. This brings about more questions. When will we see new ships which are able to burn alternative fuels? And will there be a first-mover reward? Unfortunately, these answers remain part of a still-to-be-determined future. MP

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Sulphur cap ‘scramble’ to push distillate price above US$1,000 per tonne D

istillate prices will exceed US$1,000/ tonne after 2020 as a result of the global sulphur cap, according to an analysis by EnSys Energy and Navigistics Consulting. The findings, contained within an update of the two organisations’ 2016 report Supplemental Marine Fuel Availability Study, highlight the risks facing the global economy as a result of the 2020 sulphur cap. The study noted “As 2020 gets closer the picture is becoming clearer and it does not look good for the global economy.” It highlighted the following four significant findings: • Lower than previously expected uptake of exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers) that enable continued use of higher sulphur marine fuels. • Higher total global demand for distillates and other fuels. • Global refinery projects and expected 2020 distillate manufacturing capacity are moderately higher than previously expected. • A ‘scramble’ period in which less-complex refineries bid up the price of light sweet (low sulphur) crude to produce more low-sulphur distillate and less residual fuel. The report stated “It is quite likely, based on EnSys’ World Oil Refining Logistics and Demand model, that during the ‘scramble’ period in 2020, distillate prices will exceed US$1,000 per tonne and US retail gasoline prices will spike at over US$5 per gallon (if crude oil prices enter 2020 at around US$80/b [Brent] and spike to the US$120/b range).” The analysis shows that nearly 4M b/d of high sulphur residual fuel will need to be switched to 0.5% sulphur marine fuel by 1 January 2020 to achieve full compliance. Even with a reduction in ships’ economic speeds associated with a price spike to US$1,000 per tonne for marine fuels and assuming current non-compensatory freight rates prevail in 2020 and that higher freight rates incentivise higher speeds, well over 3M b/d will still need to be switched. Commenting on the findings, EnSys Energy

New analysis suggests a strict implementation of IMO’s sulphur cap could prompt a scramble that drives up distillate prices

David St Amand (Navigistics Consulting): “Strict implementation of IMO’s ruling could lead to trade being impacted“

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

president Martin Tallett said “Our assessment of the overall global liquids supply/demand refining balance points to a maximum capability to supply marine fuels in the first half of 2020 of around 3M b/d.” He noted that, if allied to a strong determination to strictly enforce Annex VI, this outlook leads to severe market strains affecting all products in all regions – not just marine fuels. Referencing events across 2007/2008, when prices for Brent, gasoline and diesel more than doubled, Mr Tallet spoke of “a distinct risk that prices will be bid up in a scramble for sweet crude.” There will be some winners, he said, but the market will correct itself, potentially with significant economic damage resulting. “Barring a trade war or other event that cuts economic growth, trade and oil demand going in to 2020, the increase in product supply costs “could take US$0.5Trn to US$2Trn out of the global economy over the course of the year,” he said. Furthermore, a strict implementation approach by IMO will also likely lead to severe economic disruption in the maritime industry itself, according to Navigistics Consulting president David St Amand, who noted that “in addition to substantial increases in the delivered costs of goods – including crude oil and petroleum products – shipped by sea, strict implementation could lead to trade being impacted through [a] problematic implementation of IMO’s Annex VI Regulation 18, involving how to handle situations where compliant fuel is not available.” These issues, among others, were discussed at IMO’s Intercessional Meeting on 2020 Implementation, held 9 July, during which details for implementing the fuel rule progressed, according to Mr St Amand. Shipboard implementation plans were also approved during the meeting, but not made mandatory, with no third-party review required. Mr St Amand noted that “positions on non-availability situations and a definition of sulphur (what test level is a violation) were being established but no consensus had been reached.” MP


Shortages of scrubbers possible post-2020 There could be a shortage of scrubbers resulting in a worldwide shortage of heavy fuel oil (HFO) after 2020 when IMO’s sulphur cap comes into effect, said Alfa Laval vice president Niclas Dahl, who heads its marine separation and heat transfer business.

Niclas Dahl (Alfa Laval): “There must be enough scrubbers installed for ports to continue storing HFO“ (credit: Alfa Laval)

In an exclusive interview with Marine Propulsion, he said that if all the HFO currently being produced by refineries is to be used, “you need to have scrubbers on board every ship.” That is an unlikely scenario, he said, and “the interest in scrubbers is steadily increasing.” He stressed that this was just one possible outcome, but “we have to prepare for all scenarios,” Mr Dahl said, since Alfa Laval is a major scrubber manufacturer and changes in fuel usage would have an impact on many of its fuel-handling products. Following a decision in February at the 5th meeting of IMO’s SubCommittee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR 5), ships will not be able to load HFO unless they are fitted with an approved “equivalent arrangement” to meet the sulphur limit, such as a scrubber. As a result, if there is a shortage of ships fitted with scrubbers there will be reduced demand for HFO, Mr Dahl said. “A critical mass of scrubbers

DHT opts to fit scrubbers to VLCCs

installed on ships is needed in order to store HFO” at ports he said, which could lead to a global shortage. Large ports would continue to store it, but smaller ones may not, he suggested. He stressed that this was just one possible outcome; the more likely result of falling demand for HFO is that it will become very cheap, he said. Alfa Laval is a member of the Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems Association (EGCSA), whose director, Don Gregory, told Marine Propulsion that, “post-2020 there is not about to be a shortage of high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) available for sale.” But he said that in smaller markets “supply chain limitations of storage and transport may result in a shortage of supply capability for HSFO as the supply chain capacity switches to 0.50% sulphur fuels”, although “that scenario is highly unlikely in large supply ports.” Supply chain costs may initially rise for HSFO, he said, “but that is likely to be offset by the fall in the price of HSFO. A key driver to the return of the supply chain to HSFO, where they have switched away, will be the likely very attractive margin to be had in the buying and selling price.”

DHT is to fit scrubbers to its 12 youngest VLCCs, including DHT Ann

DHT has joined Frontline in announcing its preferred choice to achieve compliance with the 2020 sulphur cap. It is to fit exhaust gas cleaning systems, known as scrubbers, on 12 of its VLCCs. DHT is the second major owner in the last few days to announce a move to scrubbers, which runs counter to recent Intertanko thoughts on the matter. DHT has entered into an agreement with Alfa Laval to supply the systems and has also secured shipyard capacity to install all systems within 2019. The systems will be installed on ships built between 2012 and 2004, the part of the fleet that stands to achieve the greatest economic benefit. These 12 systems will come in addition to the two systems being installed on the newbuildings DHT Bronco and DHT Mustang set for delivery later this quarter from Hyundai Heavy Industries. Altogether, DHT will have 14 VLCCs fitted with scrubbers when the IMO sulphur cap is implemented on 1 January 2020. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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ACL to use Alfa Laval PureSOx scrubber connectivity across fleet Grimaldi Group has signed an agreement for PureSOx connectivity services on five vessels operated by Atlantic Container Line (ACL). A statement said that the services will provide not only compliance monitoring but also valuable data to optimise PureSOx operations. Grimaldi Group has been using PureSOx for exhaust gas cleaning aboard its vessels since 2014. ACL, a Grimaldi Group company specialised in transatlantic cargo shipping, has hybrid PureSOx scrubber systems installed on all five of its Generation 4 (G4) vessels: Atlantic Sail, Atlantic Sea, Atlantic Sky, Atlantic Star and Atlantic Sun. The PureSOx systems on these vessels will now be retrofitted with the Alfa Laval Remote Emission Monitor (ALREM), a data reporting and storage device that forms the basis for the growing PureSOx connectivity programme. Grimaldi Group has signed an agreement for PureSOx connectivity that extends over the next three years, after which the services and their benefits will be evaluated. Connectivity based on the ALREM is one part of the PureSOx service agreement for the ACL vessels. Training, yearly inspections, spare-part supply and a sensor-exchange programme are also included in the contract. But the addition of connectivity creates new possibilities, Grimaldi said. “We are eager to start taking advantage of connectivity with our PureSOx systems,” said ACL G4 technical manager Pierluigi Marmo. “Alfa Laval provides us with good service already, but the customised connectivity services will increase our own insight and give us even greater access to the Alfa Laval service organisation. Both of those things will make life easier for ACL and the Grimaldi Group as a whole.” ALREM will also fit into the Grimaldi Group’s own connectivity plans. The group is working on a proprietary solution to connect equipment across its vessels, into which the ALREM will also be integrated. This will ensure that all information valuable to the Grimaldi Group is available in one place.

“We’ve seen the value that collected data can offer,” said Grimaldi Group corporate energy-saving manager Dario Bocchetti. “By evaluating data from the current data-logging system, for example, we’ve realised that PureSOx releases even less SOx than if we were sailing on MGO. With a fully connected solution based on the ALREM, such analyses will be far easier to perform.” Mr Bocchetti sees the potential for making further use of the PureSOx scrubbers across the Grimaldi Group. “Connectivity is useful for seeing where we are and demonstrating our compliance easily, but it will also be beneficial for our operational levels down the road,” he explained. “The more Alfa Laval can help us learn from the data, the more we can help our crews to understand our PureSOx systems and operate them in an optimal way.”

The PureSOx systems will be retrofitted with the Alfa Laval Remote Emission Monitor, which forms the basis for the growing PureSOx connectivity programme

Arendals Dampskibsselskab in VLCC scrubber venture One of the oldest names in Norwegian shipping is acting as the organiser of another speculative VLCC scrubber sortie. Arendals Dampskibsselskab (ADS) is joining DHT and fellow VLCC operator Frontline in lining up scrubber technology for VLCCs. In the case of ADS, it is not clear if the venture is for newbuilding VLCCs, like the Hunter Group, or retrofits to VLCCs already in the water. ADS was formed in 1857 and has a long and varied history. Today, the company is

part of the Cyprus-registered Shiphold Ltd group, along with Seaview Group, OSM Maritime Group and OSM Aviation Group. According to the private placement offer, 2015-registered ADS Crude Carriers AS has formed fund ADS Tank II AS, which is listed as managed by Bjørn Tore Larsen. The fund has raised US$58M by private placement. According to ADS, it and associated companies hold investments in several

vessels, including dry bulk carriers ADS Galtesund and ADS Arendal, and four AET Tankers Aframax shuttle tankers (Eagle Barents, Eagle Bergen, HN 2236, and HN 2237). The company also lists an investment in the Aframax tanker ADS Oslo. All the above vessels are managed by OSM. In addition, ADS lists a joint venture with AET Tankers to own and operate four DP2 Aframax shuttle tankers in the North Sea and Barents Sea. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Frontline purchases scrubbers, and a portion of the manufacturer In a move reminiscent of the old Remington shaver advert, Frontline has not only ordered a large number of scrubbers from Feen Marine Scrubbers, it has also agreed to purchase 20% of the company. The move by Frontline puts the scrubber debate back at the top of the agenda. At the Intertanko annual tanker event in Rome, 61% of the responding delegates voted not to fit scrubbers. Frontline has agreed to order Feen Marine Scrubbers exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) for 14 vessels, with options to order an additional 22 systems at fixed prices. Frontline Management chief executive Robert Hvide Macleod said: “The economic case to install scrubbers is very compelling, particularly for larger vessels. Scrubbers installed on existing

vessels provide the same benefit as those delivered from the yard on newbuildings and our solution comes at a much cheaper cost. Additionally, this transaction allows Frontline to secure the capacity to source a large volume of scrubbers, which we believe will present a challenge to many owners as the deadline for sulphur emissions compliance approaches.” Feen Marine Scrubbers founder Bjørnar Feen said: “We are extremely pleased to establish a partnership with Frontline, one of the world’s most prominent shipping companies. We believe that this memorandum of agreement is indicative of both Frontline’s industry-leading approach to managing its fleet as well as the high-quality EGCS systems Feen Marine produces. We are proud that some of the world’s largest shipping

Methanol and hydrogen are the future says CEO; until then scrubbers

and trading companies, including Frontline, Navig8 Group and Trafigura, have chosen Feen Marine as their main provider of EGCS systems.” No doubt Frontline looked very closely at the issue, and conducted a ‘beauty parade’ of the available EGSA systems, but fellow tanker giant, Teekay, has chosen to go in a different direction. According to Frontline, up to 36 vessels will be fitted with Feen Marine scrubbers, which could significantly raise the number fitted, but is still tiny compared to the world fleet. Estimates of the numbers of vessels currently fitted with scrubbers vary from 300 to Shell’s belief that fewer than 2,000 ships will be fitted with scrubbers to continue running on high sulphur fuel oil by 2020. This is the quandary facing owners: should they fit scrubbers now, without knowing the price spread and payback period, or rely on compliant fuels? This period of uncertainty also offers opportunities to tell a different kind of eco tanker story.

Using LNG is ’throwing good money after bad’, said FuelSave CEO Marc Sima, advocating for scrubbers

The head of a German company focused on product development in the transport sector believes high-sulphur fuel oil combined with scrubbers will be the shipping industry’s chosen route to compliance with the 2020 cap on sulphur in fuel. “High sulphur fuels will remain the industry’s favoured fuel until methanol and hydrogen-based alternatives have attained commercial viability,” FuelSave founder and chief executive Marc Sima said. “Until then, the pursuit of LNG is just throwing good money after bad.” Citing a study published by the University Maritime Advisory System in late June, Mr Sima called LNG a “climate dead end” becasue of the CO2 emissions produced when burning the gas. He also dismissed the idea that low sulphur fuels will become the industry’s primary fuel source by 2020. In Mr Sima’s opinion, the complications of making the switch are too numerous for operators and – if a switch were to be made – refiners would raise the price of low sulphur fuels, negating any predicted price advantage. “I really can not see the global fleet switching across to low sulphur fuel in a little under two years’ time. Not only would shipowners have to make sure their engines are compatible with the fuel in time, but assuming they are, they would have to revise their supply chains, evaluate compatible lubricating oils, and then sit back and watch their operating costs increase,” he said. To meet 2020 global sulphur cap regulations, Mr Sima advocated the continued use of high sulphur fuel oils with scrubbers, noting that his company offers a fuel-addditive to optimise scrubber operation, saving up to 15% on fuel costs. MP

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DNV GL to introduce emissions notation DNV GL is set to launch a classification notation for exhaust gas cleaning systems. The class society said its new notation – called ER, for emissions reduction – will cover scrubber systems designed to reduce nitrogen oxides as well as exhaust gas recirculation systems designed to reduce sulphur oxides. Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems Association (EGCSA) director Don Gregory told Marine Propulsion the ER notation represents a “great acknowledgement of the contribution shipowners are making to assuring cleaner air for all”. However, he said “There is still work to do as the IMO EGCS guidelines are refined,” and added “EGCSA and the shipping industry benefit from experts from class societies participating in our workshops.” July 2018 is the date set for the new DNV GL notation, and the group said it was being developed in response to increased interest in emissions-reduction systems. “As the 2020 IMO sulphur cap on fuel draws closer, we have been hearing more and more from shipowners and operators who are looking for guidance on the installation and approval of systems which reduce emissions to air,” said DNV GL Maritime chief executive Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen. “This notation will enhance the transparency of the installation and

approval process for owners, the yards, and class, giving owners the confidence to invest in these systems.” According to the group, interest in installing emissions-reduction systems – in particular scrubbers – has been on the rise in recent months. DNV GL cited 817 vessels that either have scrubbers installed already or are on the orderbooks with a scrubber system. This, they said, represents an increase of 300 vessels in three months.

Star Bulk makes move on scrubbers, adding 24 to fleet

speak,” Mr Pappas said. “We have also ordered 22 scrubbers … mainly investing for our bigger vessels, and we will see what we do thereafter. I mean, we will have to see how they work, how the market moves, we’ll see how it goes after that.” According to the fleet numbers on its website, the 24 vessels to be fitted with scrubbers make up roughly a third of the group’s current fleet. The news of Star Bulk’s scrubber contract follows shortly after class society DNV GL reported that scrubber fittings had been arranged on 300 vessels in the last three months alone – with the majority in the bulk carrier and container vessel sectors. Mr Pappas said the “great majority” of the scrubbers ordered for his own Star Bulk fleet would be installed after 2019, with the company’s overall dry dock

Star Bulk Carriers, the biggest dry bulk carrier on the NASDAQ stock exchange, has committed to adding two dozen exhaust gas cleaning systems to vessels in its bulk carrier fleet. Chief executive Petros Pappas discussed the decision on Star Bulk’s quarterly earnings call, transcribed on the investment research platform Seeking Alpha. “We’re proud to say we have installed one scrubber already. And then we are installing our second scrubber as we

Most of the growth in the scrubber market has come from the bulk carrier and container vessel sectors of the shipping industry. “This increase is due to several factors, but the trend is clear,” said DNV GL Maritime environmental certification department head Stine Mundal. “This indicates that owners are making their solution decisions now and many are choosing scrubbers to comply with emissions restrictions.”

Scrubbers ready for installation on board Norwegian Escape at Meyer Werft (credit: Yara Marine Technologies AS/©Meyer Werft)

capital expenditure projected at around US$15M in 2020. He said that the average costs of scrubber installation in the company’s contracts fell below US$3M and that Star Bulk had secured financing on “around 70%” of the total costs. When the scrubbers are installed, they will come from European suppliers, he said. In the meantime, Mr Pappas said the company was putting its one newly installed scrubber system through exhaustive tests. “We installed it a couple of months ago, and we have been operating it continuously and under as harsh conditions aas we can because we want to test the potential problems,” he said. “And up to now, [the scrubber has] operated very smoothly, and we are very happy with it.” MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


EGCSA: scrubber installations nearing 1,000 vessels A survey by the Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems Asssociation (EGCSA) has offered a data-driven snapshot of the current scrubber market. EGCSA polled its membership, which includes industry heavyweights such as MAN, Alfa Laval, Wärtsilä and others, to come up with a total figure of 983 scrubbers that have either been installed already or are on order as of 31 May 2018. The survey follows recent news of lucrative scrubber purchases including Wärtsilä’s US$200M scrubber sale to a ‘major’ box shipper named by various media outlets as MSC in July, and Star Bulk’s June announcement that it is adding 24 scrubbers to its to fleet. The ECCSA report offered some other insights: 63% of scrubber installations and orders have been retrofits and 59% of retrofits took place in Asian yards, which also took on nearly 85% of new installations. Bulk carriers lead the industry with 28% of scrubber installations and orders, with


tankers not far behind at 23%. Roro vessels and other ferries, which EGCSA said made the industry's initial push into the scrubber market, make up only 13% of the total, and cruise ships - another early adopting market segment - comprise 15% of the market. EGCSA's survey also found that scrubbers are being fitted to more powerful engines. “Until relatively recently the largest installed exhausthandling capacity has been for engine powers in the region of 25 to 30 MW,” the report said, noting the installation of a retrofitted hybrid scrubber on a 72 MW container-ship engine. “Large-capacity scrubbers are not confined to retrofits as the maximum size newbuilding installation is a hybrid system for a 65 MW engine.” Open-loop scrubber systems make up the majority of installations and orders, with 988 of the 1561 individual scrubber towers installed or on order designed for openloop scrubbing.

Vessels with scrubbers installed or on order


Key: 28%


Retrofit open loop 23%

20% 15%

Retrofit hybrid 16%


Newbuild open loop


10% 5%


Newbuild hybrid


Cruise ships


Bulk carriers

Roro/ Shortsea/ Ferries

Container ships


Wärtsilä reports US$200M scrubber sale to ‘major’ box shipper Finnish shipping technology group Wärtsilä announced a US$200M deal to outfit an unnamed “major European container shipping company” with scrubbers. A statement from Wärtsilä Services said the deal included hybrid exhaust gas cleaning equipment and retrofit services

for the container-vessel fleet. Multiple reports linked the deal to container shipping giant MSC. The retrofit deal includes 50, 60 and 70 MW hybrid scrubber systems, according to a statement from Wärtsilä. “Our exhaust gas cleaning system

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

will not only help our customers’ vessels run on lower emissions but significantly improves the air quality and emission level in coastal and sea areas in general,” Wärtsilä Services project sales manager Markus Ljungkvist said in the statement. MP

Choosing the right Emissions Control Solution can be hard Choosing the right retrofit partner is not With the IMO 2020 deadline looming, shipowners around the globe are faced with a difficult challenge. Choosing the right retrofit partner with the requisite skill and experience to ensure your fleet is ready to comply is critical. Goltens Green Technologies has helped customers all over the world ready themselves for the Sulphur Emissions and Ballast Water deadlines working on over 450 compliance retrofit projects. Whatever your challenge, choose Goltens to leverage unmatched experience and global execution.



6 3 5 5 52 2 2 4

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21 Exhaust Gas Scrubber Related 58 LSGO Related




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Clean-burning marine fuels – what are the alternatives to oil? Niels Bjørn Mortensen examines the marine fuels landscape as it currently stands and the changes new regulations are likely to bring


peculation is rife on the future of marine fuels at the moment, mainly due to a few very significant IMO regulations. These regulations are emissions related and two specifically relate to sulphur in fuel - Marpol Annex VI and the 0.5% cap on sulphur in fuel set to take effect in 2020, commonly known as the sulphur cap. The final emissions-related regulation still under development is the IMO initial strategy on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from ships.

Marpol Annex VI

IMO says there are several million tonnes of heavy fuel oil on the market that contain less than 0.5% sulphur

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Marpol Annex VI is a regulation on air pollution that stipulates that fuel oil burned within Emission Control Areas (ECAs) shall contain no more that 0.1% sulphur. It took effect on 1 January 2015 and was, despite several doomsday predictions, rather smoothly implemented. In fact, the anticipated price increase in compliant 0.1% sulphur fuels turned out to be a price decrease, much to the surprise of bunker traders. When Annex VI was adopted in 2008, the general consensus held that the 0.1% sulphur limit would be met by marine gas oil (MGO), also known in ISO standard 8217 as Grade DMA. However, as early as 2014, oil companies launched fuel products which differed significantly from the ISO distillate definition while remaining compliant with mandated sulphur limits. The first was ExxonMobil with HDME 50, and not long after, other oil companies launched similar products, often referring to the products as hybrid oils. The advantage of these hybrid oils – particularly for ship operators and charterers – is their price point. Although they are more expensive than heavy fuel oil (HFO) they are cheaper than the ISO distillate grades.


2020 Sulphur Cap

In October 2016, IMO decided that – from 1 January 2020 – marine fuels combusted outside ECAs shall contain no more than 0.5% sulphur. Just as with Marpol Annex VI in 2015, the expectation was that the 2020 regulations would be met with distillate fuels such as MGO or marine diesel oil (MDO, Grade DMB in ISO standard 8217). And those expectations are being, again, proven definitively wrong by hybrid oils. Given that hybrid oils can meet the 0.1% sulphur limit, it follows logically that they would easily meet the 0.5% sulphur limit set for 2020. According IMO’s annual global fuel report, there are several million tonnes (Mt) of heavy fuel oil in the market currently that contain less than 0.5% sulphur. This represents the relatively small amount of oil required to satisfy the 2015 ECA market. In comparison, the 2020 sulphur cap will require a replacement (or sulphur removal method) for some 200250 Mt of HFO, annually. So will there be enough low-suphur fuel oil? And, if not immediately, then when will sufficient amounts be available in the world’s major bunkering ports? And will international versions of the US’ Fuel Oil Non-Availability Reports (FONARs) be in widespread use?

Gas to the rescue?

Liquefied natural gas (LNG), liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), methanol and ethanol offer an alternative to petroleum-based fuel while still meeting sulphur cap requirements. These fuels are very light weight with low energy density, meaning that they take up considerably more storage space than fuel oils. A tank containment system including insulation for LNG may require up to three times as much space – space which, on most ships, could be used more profitably for cargo or passengers. Biofuels have been used for road vehicles for decades in some countries, and shipping is beginning to explore the petroleum alternative. Early biofuels were, in large part, derived from plants used for food, such as maize (corn), but more recent grades have been developed using non-food plant materials. Some of these have used the stalks and leaves cast off from corn harvests, for example, but the latest bio fuels use algae. Biofuels’ advantage in this context is that they do not contain sulphur. The drawbacks are that biofuel is still more expensive than oil, studies have shown its environmental

impact to be unsustainable and some biofuels can have quite high nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions when burned, which are also regulated under Marpol Annex VI. One non-fuel-based alternative that allows owners and operators to meet IMO’s sulphur requirements is installing emissions abatement systems or exhaust gas cleaning systems – popularly referred to as scrubbers – on their vessels. Vessels operating scrubbers can burn oil with as much sulphur as the scrubber system can wash out of the exhaust gas and still be in compliance with IMO regulations. In practice, this allows operators to purchase the cheapest fuel oil available.

Initial Strategy on reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from ships

There is one other IMO regulation forthcoming that factors into the overall fuel picture, but it is not a concrete regulation, as yet. The IMO Initial Strategy on reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) from ships is an agreement that calls for shipping to “reduce CO2 emissions per transport work, as an average across international shipping, by at least 40% by 2030, pursuing efforts towards 70% by 2050, compared to 2008 ... and to reduce the total annual GHG emissions by at least 50% by 2050 compared to 2008 ...” With an anticipated increase in world trade of 3% annually, which will increase demand for global transport, the IMO GHG goals are truly a tall order for shipping. Emission-reduction targets will hold 2008 emissions levels in shipping as a

benchmark, and those levels are well documented. It has been suggested that the first goal, amounting to a 40% reduction in emissions in terms of tonne-miles, might be within reach through a combination of utilising presently known technologies, slow steaming and economies of scale. The second goal, a 50% reduction in total CO2 emissions, will call for new thinking. There is no way shipping can reach that goal with the fuels and technologies currently in use.

Wind propulsion

One possible emissions-reducing technology that could get the industry part way to its goal is not a new technology, but rather a very old one used in new and innovative ways: wind propulsion. Shortly following the oil crises of the 1970s, several projects were developed to show how fuel could be saved by applying support sails on types of cargo and passenger ships, and similar projects are being trialled now. Wind propulsion offers fuel-cost savings in the current petroleum-based market’s short-term mindset, reduces CO2 emissions in the medium term and meets the long-term goal of moving away from petroleum altogether. The Liberty sailboat being developed by Denmark-based Blue Technology features a 200 m trimaran with 110 m masts supporting fixed sails (prototype image below). In optimal conditions, the vessel should be able to do more than 25 knots using only wind power. The vessel’s carrying capacity will be 2,000 cars or 1,100 20’ containers (TEU). Not all ships are suited for masts

Wind propulsion can save fuel costs, reduce CO2 emissions and help transition away from petroleum

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


and sails, of course, so biofuel might be an intermediate solution to reducing shipping’s total CO2 emissions. Biofuel is considered CO2 neutral as the organic material used for producing it is part of the present global CO2 account as compared to burning 100M-year-old fossil fuels. In reality, the fuel’s CO2 neutrality will largely depend on its production methods.


Hydrogen is another possible future fuel, particularly if it can be generated without a carbon footprint. One carbon-free method of generating hydrogen fuel that already exists uses electric power capacity from other renewable energy sources such as windmills to split water molecules into

their component hydrogen and oxygen atoms. As a clean-burning fuel, the exhaust from burning hydrogen is water; however, hydrogen would require liquefication to make it viable in shipping, which is another energy-heavy process. In order to remain liquified, hydrogen must be cooled and kept at -253°C.


Finally, nuclear power is an obvious alternative when considering carbonfree fuels. Nuclear power is already in widespread use on naval vessels and submarines around the world. Russia, for example, has operated 10 nuclear-powered ice breakers since 1959, and nuclear power has been tested in four commercial ships by four countries: USA, Germany,

Japan and Russia. Although nuclearpowered commercial ships have proven to be technically possible they have not yet become a great commercial success. However, with new compact reactors, possibly fueled by Thorium, nuclear power could yet be one of the routes for shipping to reach its decarbonization targets and mitigate its impact on climate change. Only one question remains, then: when will ship operators start taking a holistic view of what these regulations are trying to achieve and use every combination of options available to them to reduce their emissions? While the fuels landscape may seem complex, there are only few alternatives to traditional fuels and we will need to use them all.

TMS Group expanding scrubber deal with Panasia Marine Propulsion has received an unconfirmed report that TMS Group is expanding an existing deal to fit scrubbers to dozens of vessels in the TMS fleet. The original agreement, announced at a signing ceremony in Greece in early July (pictured), awarded a contract to South Korea’s Panasia group for exhaust gas cleaning systems, or scrubbers, to be installed on 53 TMS vessels in the group’s tanker and bulker fleets. However, both the number of vessels and the monetary value of the contract have now increased, according to sources with knowledge of the deal. Set at US$67M in Greek media reports, the value of the contract is also expected to increase with the additional scrubber systems. At time of publication, details regarding the number of additional vessels to receive scrubber systems and the added cost to the contract remain unspecified. The original contract was signed on 5 July 2018 with Panasia chairman SooTae (Robert) Lee and the Korean ambassador to Greece in attendance, along with 30 other attendees from

related companies. Athens-based ship repair brokers BPCO Ltd negotiated the deal as agents for Panasia in Europe. A recent report from Argus Media put the total for installed and ordered scrubber systems across the shipping industry at 842, while the Exhaust Gas Cleaning System Association (EGCSA) reported 983 scrubber systems installed or on order as of May 2018. The Panasia deal follows recent news of lucrative scrubber purchases including Wärtsilä’s US$200M scrubber sale to a ‘major’ box shipper named by various media outlets as MSC in July and Star Bulk’s June announcement that it is adding 24 scrubbers to its to fleet. Frontline, which ordered scrubbers for 14 tankers with the option to add 22 more on tankers of unspecified size, is among the shipowners with the most scrubber orders. DHT Holdings is retrofitting scrubbers on 12 of its existing VLCCs and commissioning two newbuild VLCC with scrubbers. Other tanker shipowners outfitting VLCCs and Suezmaxes with scrubbers include Cosmo, Hunter Group, Kyklades Maritime, Maran Tankers, Sentek Marine & Trading and Trafigura. MP

An initial agreement for Panasia to supply 53 scrubbers to TMS Group has now increased in number and value by an undisclosed amount

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

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132 | NORTH 2020 VISION

Determining compliant fuel options for the 2020 Sulphur Cap North of England P&I Association’s “2020 Vision – Get Ready for the Sulphur Cap” event shed some much-needed light on what the Cap will mean for the industry

“If the allocation of risk is not agreed in charterparty then there will be disputes. All charterparty clauses relating to bunkers need to be reviewed and the terminology needs to be examined”


o one really knows what is going to happen on 1 January 2020 when the IMO-imposed reduction in the maximum allowable sulphur content in fuel takes effect. What we do know is that between now and then, shipowners and operators are going to have to make some tough decisions. This was the reason North of England P&I Association held its “2020 Vision – Get Ready for the Sulphur Cap” seminar for members in London in July. The aim of the event was to provide information on the risks and challenges facing its members. The first issue to address was: will the 2020 Sulphur Cap actually take place? “Our view is that there will be no deferment,” said North of England P&I Association deputy director (loss prevention) Alvin Forster, in reference to attempts by some shipowner associations to seek a delay from IMO. Mr Forster noted that there were several options available to achieve compliance with the sulphur cap and that there were pros and cons with each, involving fuel availability, onboard fuel management, capital and operational expenditure, as well as maintenance requirements. These must all be predicated on factors such as vessel type, trading area and remaining service life.

Check your charterparties, now!

North of England P&I Association deputy director (FD&D) Tiejha Smyth issued a stark warning about the impact of the sulphur cap on charterparties. “If the allocation of risk is not agreed in charterparty then there will be disputes. All charterparty clauses relating to bunkers need to be reviewed and the terminology needs to be examined,” she said. “The exact definition of what constitutes high sulphur fuel and low sulphur fuel needs to be spelt out,” she added. For instance, when

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Alvin Forster (North of England P&I Association): “Our view is that there will be no deferment”

a time-charterer takes delivery of a vessel, they buy bunkers on board and re-sell these to the owner at the end of the charter (aka “bunkers on redelivery”). She noted that during the 2020 Sulphur Cap crossover period, there could be a big difference in price and this risk needs to be allocated in the charterparty. Other potential situations include: • Unavailable or insufficient quantities of fuel affecting trading. • Performance warranties: vessel performance may change due to fuel. • Bunker quality clause: does the fuel on board conform to ISO 8217? • Post-March 2020 it will be unlawful to carry high sulphur fuel. • Tank cleaning to accept new fuel – who pays for cleaning and waste disposal? • Is the owner entitled to drydock to fit scrubbers? • Must an owner fit scrubbers? The court of appeal has found in key cases that owners are liable for breaches of Marpol regulations, but as there are several options to meet 2020 Sulphur Cap regulations, the courts will decide on individual cases. • Indemnification: owners could ask to be indemnified by the charterer in the charterparty if the vessel incurs any penalties for breach of noncompliance while under the charterer’s control. Ms Smyth noted that when it comes to drafting charterparties, North of England P&I

NORTH 2020 VISION | 133

Association is keen to work with members, as approaching the problem now will reduce expense in the future.

New rules, new fuels, new worries

Veritas Petroleum Services (VPS) customer account manager Ian Crutchley was invited to the seminar to explain the realities of fuel quality. Mr Crutchley commenced by noting that there are already significant issues with fuels. VPS collects data on the fuel its tests and when necessary issues bunker alerts to its clients on fuel contamination and similar issues in certain ports. Given the current situation, the 2020 Sulphur Cap may well be chaotic. For instance, already in 2018 VPS has issued 33 bunker alerts, more than half of the total amount issued in 2017 (58). In many cases, the fuel tested complied with ISO 8217, but was off-spec in other ways. As demand for distillates increases, VPS has noticed a corresponding rise in off-spec distillates. However, by volume, residual fuels are the most tested. “Recently in Houston, we found 100 ships with fuel-pump problems,” said Mr Crutchley. The vessels experienced fuel system and filter clogging, fuel-pump failure and even engine damage. VPS found that the fuel had been supplied by 10 different suppliers, using 20 different delivery barges. Therefore, VPS concluded the problem lay downstream. An expensive forensic testing of the fuel samples

Tiejha Smyth (North of England P&I Association): “The exact definition of what constitutes high sulphur fuel and low sulphur fuel needs to be spelt out”

found it contained the phenolic compound 4-Cumyl-phenol, commonly used in the manufacture of epoxy resins and pesticides. Even though the compound causing the sticking had been identified, it was still not possible to identify the source or where it had been introduced in the supply chain. It is believed that 4-Cumyl-phenol had been added to the 380 cst fuel as a fuel cutter stock to increase the viscosity of the fuel, but when and where is not clear. “It is important to note,” said Mr Crutchley, “that the fuel complied with ISO 8217 and the presence of this compound would not be detected in ordinary testing. Is this a sign of things to come?” So even before the introduction of a new range of fuels, there are issues with fuel chemistry. Although these fuels will conform to ISO standards, there are doubts over the ability to mix like fuels from different sources. “There will be a huge variation from batch to batch, and these will mix in the tank. So segregation of fuel stems will be needed,” said Mr Crutchley. He also noted that the difference in chemistry was not only confined to residual and distillate fuels. There are significant differences in the chemistry of LNG, depending on source. So, as a fuel expert, what would be his option for 2020? “Conventional marine gas oil (MGO) is a known fuel, if expensive. I would use MGO and let someone else try out the new fuels,” he said. MP

North of England P&I Association: Assessing the 2020 Sulphur Cap options Compliance Option 1: Burn distillates

Compliance Option 2: Burn blends and hybrids

Compliance Option 3: Install EGCS (scrubbers)

Compliance Option 4: Burn LNG

Compliance Option 5: Alternative energy

Marine fuels are categorised as being either a distillate or a residual. Distillates are the lighter-grade fuels from the refining process, such as MGO and marine diesel oil (MDO). Pros: • No major capex or modification needed. Minor fuel system modification and tanker cleaning. • Relatively simple changeover process between 0.5% and 0.1% fuels when transiting ECAs. • Reduced engine maintenance demands and reduced risk of engine failure. Cons: • Price differential between high sulphur fuels and low sulphur fuels is forecast to be high. • Can refineries meet demand? • Potential problem with low temperature flow characteristics of some distillates. • Using distillates requires less or no requirement to heat fuel. Excess steam generation capacity may require venting.

Blends refers to the development of compliant heavy distillates or lighter residuals fuels. Hybrid fuels are compliant products that are heavier than MGO and MDO but lighter than residual fuel. Pros: • No major capex or modification needed. Minor fuel system modification and tanker cleaning. • Expected to be cheaper than distillate fuel. Cons: • Can refineries meet demand? • Supply and price volatility. • Heavier fuels may contain cat fines. • Some fuels may require onboard treatment (heating, centrifuge). • Will these fuels meet ISO 8217? • High risk of incompatibility if using different blends or hybrids.

This option involves using fuel with a sulphur content greater than 0.5% and installing a scrubber. Three versions are available: open loop; closed loop; and a hybrid system. Pros: • Typical capex of US$3M-5M means that with a high fuelprice differential, payback time is relatively short. • Expectation of very low high sulphur fuel costs post-2020. • Lower fuel cost may make vessels more attractive to charterers. Cons: • Scrubbers take up space and dwt capacity. • High power demand: fuel consumption increase of 3-5%. • Concerns about operation and maintenance affecting compliance. • Open loop may be affected by future legislation on wastewater discharge. • Availability of high sulphur fuel unknown post-2020. • Time required to fit scrubbers affects earnings.

Burning LNG emits zero SOx and limited particulates, but requires higher levels of safety. Pros: • Regarded as a clean fuel and likely to conform to changes in legislation. • Lower fuel costs. • Seen as green by the general public. Cons: • Relatively high capex. • Limited LNG bunkering infrastructure. • Higher level of safety culture required. • Limited crew experience, increased training required. • Lower energy density – more volume needed. • Contains methane, potentially a greater threat than CO2. • Large LNG tanks restrict dwt and space.

Although there are a number of alternative energy sources for shipping, uptake is low. Options include: • Methanol (low flashpoint, poor energy density). • Hydrogen fuel cells: strong green credentials, but heavy and expensive. • LPG: Similar pros and cons to LNG, popular car fuel in some countries. • Batteries: Low maintenance but technology insufficiently developed to power oceangoing vessels.

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Hydrogen gets ready for take-off H

ydrogen is the most basic element in the universe. With an atomic number of 1, it is ranked first in the periodic table of the elements and, since the middle of 2017, the prospect of hydrogen becoming a mainstream marine fuel has been lifted by a number of other ‘firsts’. In November last year, for example, a 14-m high-speed catamaran built by BWSeaCat of the UK became the first Lloyd’s Register-classed vessel to use hydrogen to power a diesel engine. It is used in a dual-fuel system based around a pair of Volvo Penta D4 engines that were retrofitted with a hydrogen injection system to power a crew boat for Belgium’s CMB. It is called Hydroville and will be used to carry CMB’s staff to and from its Antwerp offices during their morning commute, although the operator has grander long-term plans. In a PowerPoint presentation to mark the vessel’s delivery, CMB research and development manager Roy Campe described the project as “a showcase for the use of a clean fuel in maritime propulsion.” He hopes it will “inspire the industry, attract innovative talent and roll out hydrogen technologies on CMB’s seagoing ships.” He explained that diesel fuel is still needed to burn the hydrogen, which is

A handful of alternative power sources look set to propel the shipping industry into the second half of the 21st century, with hydrogen potentially at the forefront, writes Paul Gunton

injected via the engines’ intercoolers. The engines’ emissions are reduced in proportion to the amount of hydrogen used, with the ratio of the two fuels depending on the engines’ load and speed. For Lloyd’s Register (LR), the project presented a challenge because “the novel concept of hydrogen-injected diesel engines are not covered by standard LR rules,” said LR global head of engineering systems Ed Fort in a statement last December. Instead, a risk-based design approach to approval was used. A larger project, called HySeas III, started on 1 July this year to build the world’s first seagoing car and passenger ferry fuelled by hydrogen. It will use fuel cells, rather than internal combustion

Hydroville uses a dual-fuel diesel/hydrogen propulsion arrangement (credit: Lloyd’s Register)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

engines, to convert the hydrogen’s energy to electricity. The vessel will operate in and around Orkney in northern Scotland, using hydrogen that is already being produced using otherwise-wasted energy from windfarms, prompting its backers to describe it as “marking a paradigm shift towards entirely emissions-free marine transport.” Those backers are led by Scotland’s Ferguson Marine Engineering and the University of St Andrews, which jointly co-ordinated a European consortium in a bid for EU funding to support to the ferry’s design and construction. Its development is expected to cost around €12.6M (US$14.6M), of which €9.3M has been awarded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation fund. Marine Propulsion has been advised by a source with experience of EU-funded maritime projects that the UK’s departure from the EU next March is unlikely to affect the project, despite its UK-based leader. Other consortium members are Orkney Islands Council, Kongsberg Maritime (Norway), Ballard Power Systems Europe (Denmark), McPhy (France), DLR German Aerospace Center and Interferry, the global trade association for ferry operators and suppliers. Details of the project were presented at the Smart Shipping Symposium in May, hosted by the City of Glasgow College Faculty of Nautical Studies. Delegates heard that the project’s initial objective is to construct and prove the vessel’s modular drive train onshore and test it for stress and durability using real-world data from existing vessels. Ferguson Marine Engineering chief naval architect Chris Dunn highlighted some of the practical challenges that the ferry and the project faces. He told Marine Propulsion that there are few published rules or standards on using hydrogen as a marine fuel “so we will need to work extensively with [the regulators] through an intensive risk-based design process to achieve the necessary approvals.”


An early concept drawing for the HySeas III project, the world’s first seagoing car and passenger ferry fuelled by hydrogen (Credit: Ferguson Marine Engineering)

He also noted that there are no standard bunkering interfaces for hydrogen and the poor power density for hydrogen requires large gas storage tanks. Meanwhile, in Norway, three ferry operators have been invited to submit material ahead of preparing a bid to provide a ferry link on the country’s west coast, to start in 2021. In May this year, the Norwegian Public Roads Administration (NPRA) asked operators Boreal Sjø, Fjord1 and Norled to contribute to the dialogue phase of a project that will lead to what is said to be the world’s first hydrogen-electric ferry, using fuel cells to operate a triangular service between Hjelmeland, Skipavik and Nesvik in Norway’s Rogaland region. NPRA has specified that the route

should be operated with at least 50% hydrogen energy, with the rest coming from the electricity network, charging batteries at the loading berths. NPRA project manager Camilla Røhme described the scheme as “a demanding development. Very few components in a hydrogen system are certified for maritime use,” she said, and paid tribute to the “impressive work … done by the shipping companies and the supplier industry.” In the US, a fuel cell-powered ferry is due to enter service next year after Golden Gate Zero Emission Marine (GGZEM) was awarded a US$3M grant by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in June. It will be the first commercially operated hydrogen fuel cell ferry in the world, GGZEM states on its website. Its fuelling arrangements will allow the ferry,

to be named, Water-Go-Round, to be fuelled anywhere with truck access. The aluminium catamaran, designed by Incat Crowther, will have a 22-knot top speed and be built by Bay Ship & Yacht Co of Alameda, California. It will be powered by dual 300-kW electric motors using independent electric drivetrains from BAE Systems. Power will be generated by 360 kW of Hydrogenics proton exchange membrane fuel cells and Li-ion battery packs. Hydrogen tanks will be installed on its upper deck and contain enough hydrogen for up to two days between refuellings. It will initially be operated by Red and White Fleet for a three-month trial period in San Francisco Bay. The operator plans then to purchase the vessel as the first of several vessels to meet its commitment to a zero-emission operation.

GGZEM’s Water-Go-Round will be the world’s first commercially operated hydrogen fuel-cell ferry (credit: GGZEM)

Hydrogen: a sustainable future fuel Much of this feature is devoted to hydrogen over the other fuels under review – methanol and nuclear – because it was identified earlier this year as one of three fuelling options that could lead to zero-emission vessels (ZEVs). A report published in May by Lloyd’s Register and the UK-based University Maritime Advisory Services for the Sustainable Shipping Initiative (SSI) selected hydrogen, electricity and biofuels as the best candidates to power ZEVs because “they can feasibly replace a conventional ship with limited impacts to voyage times, routes or cargo-carrying arrangements [and] they all produce only trace greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under continuous operation.” The report, Zero Emission Vessels, what needs to be done? includes discussion about hydrogen, focusing on fuel cells rather than internal combustion engines. But it acknowledged that producing hydrogen is expensive, fuel cells are only about 40% efficient and storage options for liquid hydrogen are not as developed as those for other gasses.

In the long term, fuel cells will become about 75% efficient and “only green hydrogen with nearly zero CO2 emissions [during its production] is used in shipping,” the paper notes in a summary of one of its forecast scenarios. In its conclusions, however, hydrogen and electric power are both ranked behind biofuel in the quest for ZEVs. “For hydrogen fuel cell options, the associated costs of the technology on board (both hydrogen storage and the fuel cell) weigh significantly on the overall profitability,” the report states. But it also briefly mentions internal combustion engines, suggesting that producing hydrogen by “electrolysis with renewable electricity can also be used to produce ammonia … which is less costly to store on board. Both hydrogen and ammonia can be used directly in internal combustion engines, which can also help control capital costs.” Voyage costs, however, “remain the largest contributory factor to the poor competitiveness of hydrogen fuel cells,” it adds, although there is “great potential for [cost] reduction, even within the timescales used in this study, out to 2030.” MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Class societies consider fuel cells and methanol With alternative power sources coming on stream, class societies are now focussing on some groundbreaking projects


lass societies are focusing on the use of new alternative power sources within passenger shipping. Bureau Veritas (BV ) global market leader passenger ships and ferries Andreas Ullrich – appointed to the position in March this year – told Marine Propulsion’s sister publication Passenger Ship Technology “New technologies such as fuel cells are, I think, the future.” BV has classed and is classing some ground-breaking alterative power newbuild projects, including a number of LNG-fuelled projects, including Seapsan’s LNG battery-hybrid ferries. This gave the society “a lot of experience” with hybrid technology, Mr Ullrich said, prompting it to update its energy storage systems (ESS) rules in July last year with a new chapter providing a framework for electric and hybrid power solutions. The new class notations include power management, power back-up and zeroemission standards. Lloyd’s Register (LR) is also looking at alternative fuels, including fuel cells and hydrogen. It has taken a leading role

investigating alternative fuels for passenger ships as it classed the methanol conversion of Stena Germanica in 2015, making it the first significant vessel to operate on methanol. As for hydrogen, LR global sustainability manager Katharine Palmer told Marine Propulsion that although interest in using it as a marine fuel is increasing, “the economics for the internationally trading fleet do not seem viable due to the relatively poor volumetric energy density, worldwide availability and lifecycle economics, although we are researching how this could change in the future.” On some specific routes, such as short inshore and inland operations on defined restricted routes where onboard energy demands are relatively low and bunkering is frequent, hydrogen can be viable now in the short term. RINA is another class society involved with methanol and fuel cells for the ferry and cruise industry. RINA executive vice president for marine strategic development Paolo Moretti sees potential in methanol as an energy source for fuel cells, describing it as “the low-hanging fruit. [It is] liquid, ready for use without excessive pressure, has no cryogenic problems [and minimal] impact on the payload of the ship.” He said methanol can be a cost-effective alternative marine fuel that is available worldwide through existing infrastructure. “With the growing demand for cleaner marine fuel, methanol is a promising alternative fuel to help the shipping

Stena Germanica was the first significant ship to operate on methanol when it was converted in 2015 (credit: Stena Line)

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Paolo Moretti (RINA): “Methanol is “the low-hanging fruit” of alternative marine fuels” (credit: RINA)

industry meet increasingly strict emissions regulations,” Mr Moretti commented. In addition, converting a ship to run on methanol costs “significantly less” than alternative fuel conversions, he said. RINA has been actively involved in co-ordinating national experts and providing input to the IMO correspondence group on the “Amendments to the IGF Code and development of guidelines for low-flashpoint fuels”. The group is working towards a completion date in September, as this issue of Marine Propulsion is published. It will be backed-up by the Interim Guidelines for ships using methyl/ethyl alcohol as fuel that will provide guidance for the arrangement, installation, control and monitoring of machinery, equipment and systems using those fuels to minimise the risk to the ship, its crew and the environment. In January of this year RINA issued its own rules for fuel-cell installations in ships, which Mr Moretti said were consistent with the developing international regulatory framework. “Consequently, only minor adjustments may be expected in the future, mostly triggered by the feedback from ongoing R&D projects or newbuilding activities,” he said. MP


MSC meeting calls for new methanol fuel standards IMO request suggests methanol could play a significant role in replacing diesel as a marine fuel


ethanol took a step towards widespread use in June when the 99th meeting of IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 99) asked the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to develop a standard for methyl/ethyl alcohol as a marine fuel and another standard for the couplings needed to handle it. An ISO observer at the meeting said the organisation would be willing to develop these standards but highlighted a difficulty, pointing out to delegates that there was insufficient use of such a fuel (which is normally required for a technology before ISO will develop a standard) and the industry was short of experience. In response, the Cook Islands delegation proposed that appropriate IMO legislation should be developed prior to the development of the ISO standards, which it said should take into account the safety concerns associated with the low flashpoint and volatile nature of methyl/ethyl alcohol as a marine fuel. IMO’s report on MSC 99 said that the meeting ‘noted’ those comments, but that “does not mean that the Cook Islands’ proposal was accepted or agreed,” its secretariat advised Marine Propulsion. MSC 99’s decision was welcomed by the Methanol Institute (MI). In a statement on 9 July it said the development “reflects growth of interest in methanol as a safe, clean marine

IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee meeting in June asked ISO to develop standards for methyl/ethyl-alcohol as a marine fuel (credit: IMO)

fuel”. Its statement included comments by the International Bunker Industry Association’s IMO representative, Unni Einemo, who explained that ISO’s involvement at this stage is unusual. “ISO has traditionally developed fuel standards only after user experience to be able to assess which parameters need to be specified and what relevant limits should be [set],” he said. The International Methanol Producers and Consumers Association has already established a specification that is widely used by producers and consumers, but “a dedicated ISO standard will help shipowners understand the fuel in a marine fuel context,” said MI chief operating officer Chris Chatterton in the statement. He reported “increasing interest around methanol as a liquid fuel that is safe to handle, easy to ship and store and is more widely available than other low sulphur alternatives.” So far, there are only eight ships operating on methanol: the ropax Stena Germanica and seven tankers operated by Waterfront Shipping, which has four more on order and due for delivery next year. Waterfront is the shipping arm of Methanex, the world’s largest producer and supplier of methanol, which can be made from LNG or natural resources, making it a “long-term sustainable fuel” that is available around the world, according to a company video on Methanex’s website. Lloyd’s Register global passenger ship manager John Hicks pointed out that a benefit over other alternative fuels is that it “can be put into a normal tank [that] does not have to be a Type-C or cryogenic tank.” Lloyd’s Register (LR) has already published provisional rules for classifying methanol-fuelled ships and the class society’s global sustainability manager Katharine Palmer told Marine Propulsion that the society is involved in IMO’s correspondence group on its International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Lowflashpoint Fuels (known as the IGF Code), which will cover methanol. That group is expected to finish its work soon, she said in late July. After that, “LR’s provisional rules will be aligned and incorporated as full rules, thereby providing much of the technical details not included in the statutory regulations,” she said. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Interest in nuclear power is ‘quite conceivable’ Of the energy sources being proposed to replace diesel as a marine fuel, nuclear is pretty near the bottom of the list. But given the right circumstances, could it make practical sense?


uclear propulsion for merchant ships is not an option that is high on any shipowner’s list of emissions-reducing propulsion arrangements. But that may not always be the case, believes the London-based World Nuclear Association. In a 7,500-word online article that was updated in July ( about all forms of nuclear-powered shipping, it reviews the chequered history of nuclearpowered commercial vessels but predicts that “with increasing attention being given to greenhouse gas emissions arising from burning fossil fuels … and the excellent safety record of nuclear-powered ships, it is quite conceivable that renewed attention will be given to marine nuclear powered ships.” The association’s senior communication manager Jonathan Cobb told Marine Propulsion that this prediction is based on more than 60 years of experience of surface and submarine propulsion, which shows “there is great potential for nuclear technologies to offer a low-carbon alternative to fossil fuels.” Dr Cobb mentioned increasing Russian use of nuclear propulsion to power icebreakers as a current example of nuclear propulsion and said that Russia had launched its first floating nuclear powerplant. This was built in St Petersburg and Marine Propulsion has previously reported that it will be fuelled in Murmansk, from where it will be towed to Pevek, at the eastern end of the Northern Sea Route and the most northerly town in Russia. It is due to go into service in the middle of next year, generating enough power for a town of up to 100,000 people. Construction of a second is due to start next year. Dr

Cobb advised that China is developing vessels that will use nuclear reactors both for propulsion and power supply. “Public acceptance is often raised as an issue for the use of civil nuclear technologies,” he said, but added that “the future for nuclear propulsion may equally be influenced by the extent to which the fossil fuel emissions of diesel-fuelled shipping will no longer be publicly or politically acceptable.” The economics of nuclear-powered propulsion “can work with a high-enough carbon price,” believes Tristan Smith, a reader at University College London who studies the environmental impacts of shipping. But responding in May to comments by Marine Propulsion’s executive editor Paul Gunton about the cost-benefit of nuclear powering, Dr Smith said that, because of cheaper hydrogen fuel-cell competitors, “we think it is unlikely to get to the point where nuclear reactors on ships are competitive.” An even bigger obstacle, however, would be the constraints and treaties required to operate such ships. As for tramp ships, “the political nightmare of negotiating a treaty that could cover global operation would be very limited.” One organisation that has long had an interest in nuclear propulsion is class society Lloyd’s Register. In 2010, it formed a consortium with Enterprises Shipping and Trading, Hyperion Power Generation and BMT to examine the marine applications for small modular reactors. More recently, in 2013, its Strategic Research Group looked at nuclear options and one of its outcomes was a paper written with academics from Southampton University, Concepts for a modular nuclear-

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

“The future for nuclear propulsion may equally be influenced by the extent to which the fossil fuel emissions of diesel-fuelled shipping will no longer be publicly or politically acceptable”

powered container ship ( It proposed a solution to political constraints by avoiding bringing a nuclearpowered ship into a port. Instead, a tug-andbarge design was proposed, with the nuclear propulsion module separating from the ship and remaining in international waters while the cargo module continues, using batteries that had been charged by the nuclear plant. Lloyd’s Register global head of technology, risk management, Vince Jenkins, told Marine Propulsion in July that the society had been involved in nuclear power since the 1960s, historically driven by the escalating cost of bunker fuel, potential regulation on GHG emissions and concerns over the continuity of bunker supply. Its interest remains, he indicated. “With the adoption of the IMO GHG strategy and the forthcoming entry into force of the global sulphur cap regulation, these drivers are still valid today and the main reason for industry interest in nuclear power,” he said. MP

Tristan Smith (UCL): Nuclear-powered propulsion “can work with a high-enough carbon price” (credit: ABB)

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Additives and the race for purer fuel Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Additives have a big role to play in the development of 2020-compliant fuel, enabling the sector to better deal with the complications presented by a low-sulphur future, writes Selwyn Parker


ith the 2020 sulphur cap becoming a not-so-distant concern, Japanese container shipping giant, Ocean Network Express (ONE), has engaged fuel-treatment specialist Innospec to develop the cleanest possible fuel for its requirements. The marine division of Innospec, a specialist in fuel additives, will be treating many tonnes of fuel in a trial involving more than 60 of ONE’s vessels. Rival container groups will be watching the exercise closely. With a total fleet of 240 vessels and a capacity of approximately 1.44M TEU, the group boasts the sixth-biggest fleet in the world and, like its rivals, has much to gain from cleaner and more efficient fuel.

are based on the relative lack of interest to date in scrubbers, which are designed to clean up emissions in the exhaust system. According to industry sources, the total number of scrubbers already installed and on order is just 500, far below earlier expectations. And looking ahead to 2020, Shell Marine estimates that fewer than 2,000 ships will be fitted with scrubbers that will allow them to continue running on high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO). That means the long-term future for HFO looks dim. “The reality is that we are looking at a distillate future,” predicts Innospec. Spanish ferry group Balearia would certainly agree with that conclusion. The company announced in late July that it will be investing €60M (US$70M) in switching five of its ferries over to natural gas-powered engines. The two-year exercise is estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by more than 45,000 tonnes and NOx emissions by more than 4,400 tonnes, while eliminating all sulphur and particle emissions. In addition, in February 2019 Balearia will launch the first of two low-emission smart ships. “Balearia expects to have nine ships sailing with this energy within three years,” announced chairman Adolfo Utor. As with other conversions to gas power, Balearia’s project crucially depends on the skill and knowledge of the oil companies. In the ferry group’s case, Spain’s Gas Natural Fenosa has developed the 2020-compliant fuel and has signed a 10-year supply contract.

“Shell Marine’s expectation is that 90% or more of the shipping fleet will switch to fuels with a sulphur level of 0.5% in the run-up to January 2020”

The trial is taking place as operators of container ships, tankers, cruise ships, ferries, tugs and offshore support vessels search for the best ways to meet the new standards that mandate 0.5% sulphur emissions. Although undoubtedly good for the planet, the regulations are putting the world’s shipping fleet and the fuel industry under unprecedented pressure. With time running out, some experts are even predicting the end of heavy fuel oil (HFO), the default energy of the fleet for nigh on a century. These assumptions

In addition to fuels, there is also an unprecedented amount of work going into lubricants. Shell Marine has designed its entire portfolio of lubricants to meet the incoming standards. The oil giant is also trialling a new cylinder oil, due to be launched in 2019 as demand grows for lubricants fit for the new era. “Shell Marine’s expectation is that 90% or more of the shipping fleet will switch to fuels with a sulphur level of 0.5% in the run-up to January 2020,” said global technical manager Sara Lawrence. “This

will be a mixture of very low sulphur fuel oil and distillate fuels.” Not to be outdone, ExxonMobil has developed Mobilgard 525, a high-quality cylinder oil for vessels operating on fuel oil with 0.10% sulphur content.

Additives in the mix

The production of higher-quality fuel also requires the application of advanced science in terms of distillate additives. Shipping companies of all types want improved lubricity. They also want cleaner fuels that reduce the fouling of injectors, a regular bugbear in the engineroom. To reduce fuel waste, they want more efficient combustion. In the interests of easier maintenance and longer-lasting engines, they also want less corrosion, another area where additives offer sustainable solutions. And everybody wants more stable fuel that retains its properties even under long-term storage. Additives have an important role to play – if they work. As Lubrizol Industrial Fuels’ technology manager Jim Bush and product manager Scott Hace explained in a paper titled The truth about marine fuel additives, “over the years fuel additives have developed a questionable reputation in the shipping industry, due to the actions of a few unscrupulous suppliers.” Thankfully, this concern appears to be a thing of the past, and the additives industry is toiling along with the rest of the fuel sector to deal with the complications presented by a low-sulphur future. “Treatment with lubricity-improving additives is sometimes required for fuels which have been severely hydro-treated to produce ultra-low sulphur diesel,” noted the paper’s authors. Additives can be used to stabilise distillate fuel that has been stored on board for long periods, an important consideration in “fuel-switching” – when a vessel changes to cleaner fuels in lowemission zones. Additives also play a key role in improving fuel combustion, which not only makes for more economical voyages but also reduces the build-up of soot, a constant concern in enginerooms because it presents a fire hazard. Finally, metal-based additives can neutralise the accumulation of corrosion-causing acid created by highsulphur fuels. The perennial problem of tank sludge is also coming to a head as the lowsulphur deadline nears. The muck from HFO accumulates in fuel storage tanks,

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


fuel lines and injection gun systems, sometimes over years. It is not possible to pour 2020-compliant fuels on top of the sludge because it breaks up the residues, which then work their way through the main engines and auxiliary power systems, causing blockages in filters and purifiers. So how to get rid of it when ships switch over to non-HFO or cleaner HFO fuels? Until recently, the only way was to take the ship out of action while the tanks were cleaned in an expensive and timeconsuming exercise. However, Innospec has developed a product that it claims allows the tanks to be cleaned while the vessel is under way. This could have a huge impact on costs and fleet management, allowing engines to practically clean themselves during operation. The pursuit of the right treatments and additives is endless, with experiments going on constantly in the background. In early 2017 at its Marine and Power Innovation Centre in Hamburg, Shell tested the properties of an Innospec product, Octamar Complete, designed to improve specific fuel oil consumption (SFOC), stability and emissions. According to the company, the results showed an average SFOC reduction of 1.6% across the power range and a maximum reduction of 2.2% at half load. Furthermore, the product was able to reduce the emission of particulate matter by 60%.

The problem of supply

One of the main underrated challenges is that of supply. How much of each kind of oil and lubricant will the world’s shipping fleet require? It is a complex issue that goes right back to the refineries. Shell Marine anticipates up to 3M b/d of HSFO will be displaced by low-sulphur fuels, which clearly involves huge adjustments in supply. It has already implemented most of its two-stroke portfolio and is working on the rest, but there are many kinds of oils to consider. The company has recently

“Over the years fuel additives have developed a questionable reputation in the shipping industry, due to the actions of a few unscrupulous suppliers”

Balearia Ferries expects to spend US$70M on gas-powered engines

upgraded its four-stroke crankcase lubricants – Shell Gadinia and Shell Argina – noting in a technical paper titled Shell Marine prepares for more cylinder oil uncertainties, that “The new oils have been optimised to deal with the faster viscosity increase and the base-number depletion experienced by oils in modern medium-speed engines.” Similarly, ExxonMobil has come up with Premium HDME 50 that meets all the lowsulphur regulations. “[It] has no residual material, which leads to cleaner engines without cat fines,” the company reports. ExxonMobil also claims excellent ignition quality for the fuel.

Catalytic fines

Commonly shortened to “cat fines”, catalytic fines are tiny particles about the diameter of a single human hair. Created by the catalytic cracking process employed in refineries, they are composed of aluminium and silica, which are elements used in the process. Some of the particles are carried over into the residual oil via the slurry oil. Nearly as hard as diamonds, cat fines can cause a lot of mechanical damage despite their microscopic size. Measured on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

used by scientists, they are nearly twice as hard as the iron and steel used in engines. And unfortunately, they are becoming more prevalent in fuel because they are produced as a side effect of low sulphur fuels. Two-stroke engines are the biggest victims. As Wilhelmsen reported in an early 2018 study entitled Between a rock and a hard place – catalytic fines in fuel “The damage caused by catalytic fines is almost exclusively seen in two-stroke engines.” In fact, some two-strokes have been put out of action in less than 100 hours by this issue. Rough weather tends to bring the contaminants into play because they get shaken free from the sediment in the bottom of fuel tanks. An exhaustive study last year by ExxonMobil, titled Explore the outlook for energy – a view to 2040, which looked at more than 400,000 oil samples, revealed that 43% of vessels had enough of these impurities in their fuel to trigger serious engine damage and even catastrophic failure. Lloyds Register’s Fuel Oil Bunkering and Advisory Service (FOBAS) also identified “significant problems” with catalytic fines in bunker fuels. In samples taken at Fujairah bunkering port in ➤






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of these contaminants ranged from 75 milligrams per kilo to 139 milligrams per kilo. In the above-mentioned report, Wilhelmsen cited the Viswa Lab, the fuel analysis specialists, which earlier this year issued a warning for ARA regions after detecting high concentrations of cat finds in bunker fuel. “These trends are alarming,” warned Wilhelmsen. “If the quality of fuels during bunkering and onboard use is not proactively monitored, this can lead to significant main and auxiliary engine damage and repair costs.” Four-stroke engines are less sensitive to the issue, partly because their splashtype lubrication washes away most of the cat fines. On the bright side there are ways of beating cat fines and other fuel impurities. Purifiers are one option, although Viswa Lab has found that the efficiency of purifiers can vary wildly, from 20% to 60% depending on type. Another method is generally described as condition monitoring. Wilhelmsen business manager for water and oil solutions Sachin Gupta described condition monitoring as “a preemptive way of carrying out maintenance.” Likening it to going to a gym to stay in shape, he said: “Condition monitoring is carrying out spot checks regularly – daily or weekly – so that ship operators, managers or crew can understand their machines so well that they anticipate problems before they arrive.” And, fuel being of prime importance, he recommended regular testing of fuels and lubricants so that any impurities or other problems are detected. Wilhelmsen, for example, has a range of test kits that enable crews to carry out spot checks on fuels during bunkering. “You have a quick answer. It takes 15 minutes,” said Mr. Gupta. One such kit, the Unitor, designed for onboard testing (rather than in a lab) analyses the cat fines content down to 20 particles per million. It can also be used to check the efficiency of the filtration system. Like similar products, the point of Unitor is to assess the integrity of the fuel before it gets into the system.

Fuel quality issues

As the 2020 deadline approaches, the variable quality of fuel remains a pressing issue. However, ship-to-shore connectivity and sensor-based analytics are helping ensure the integrity of the fuel. Several oil companies have devised

20 - 60%

of the ship management department Jaap de Jong. “We must have 100% reliability wherever our vessels are operating.” That is why laboratories around the world are working at peak capacity to create fuels and lubricants that are not only friendly to the environment but also to the engine.

A new ‘wonder fuel’ out of Japan

Potential variance in efficiency of purifiers


Vessels with oil sample impurities that could trigger serious engine damage

proprietary systems, such as Shell Marine with LubeMonitor, which detect deteriorations in the condition of cylinders and feed the data to Shell’s on-shore team for analysis. As the company explained, ship operators ignore such aids at their peril: “Even companies grappling with the cost of the Energy Efficiency Design Index, Shipping Monitoring Reporting and Verification, CO2 and ballast water management systems will concede that one lesson learned from engine cold corrosion has been that saving on cylinder oil technical services can prove a false economy.” One company that has adopted Shell’s advice is maritime contractor Van Oord. In June the Rotterdam-based group signed a five-year contract with the oil giant to handle lubrication for its fleet. “We are involved in dredging, oil and gas infrastructure, and offshore wind projects around the world,” explained staff director

The imminent low-sulphur regulations have sparked Japan’s Oshima Shipbuilding and other partners to explore the development of a new virtually emissions-free, reasonably priced fuel based on cycle oil. According to Oshima and classification society DNV GL, the fuel would meet the 0.5% sulphur cap without the need for scrubbers or other expensive and spaceconsuming equipment. For good measure, it is said to be highly combustible. Known as Super Eco Fuel, it is a compound of different liquids. Oshima Shipbuilding said it comprises light cycle oil (LCO), which is a secondary refinery product, gas-to-liquid (GTL) made from natural gas, and finally plain water. Each component of the mix contributes something to the result. LCO has a low sulphur content but is hard to ignite, while GTL contains almost no sulphur or other impurities, ignites easily and delivers a complete combustion process. The fuel, which is mixed on board, can be used in existing engines without the need for timeconsuming retrofits. “In addition the specific fuel oil consumption is slightly lower,” said Oshima. “CO2 emissions and soot formation are reduced as well.” According to DNV GL, this potential wonder fuel will cost more than standard HFO but less than other low-sulphur fuels. However, it is still early days. The fuel is being trialled in Japan and the results are being collated. “Preliminary tests of the fuel characteristics, engine performance and reliability have yielded satisfactory results,” DNV GL reports. The biggest challenges will be availability. But so far DNV GL is impressed by the potential. “I am excited about Super Eco Fuel,” said DNV GL expert Adam Larsson, discipline leader in hydrodynamics and stability, who has been working with Oshima on a new kind of general cargo carrier. “[That is] provided there is sufficient availability of bunkering. Also, the technical feasibility of engine performance has to be assured. But it may have significant potential as a marine fuel.” MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Fuel systems: ’frugal’ is the watchword

Modern fuel systems must cope with harsh operational conditions while meeting tough new standards. By doing so, significant savings are possible, writes Selwyn Parker

MAN's methanol-burning ME-LGI engine aboard Waterfront Shipping Company’s Mari Jone


n the quest for the economic delivery of cleaner fuel, manufacturers are chasing ever higher injection pressures, more accurate flow measurements and alternative fuel systems. And, as the Brent and other indexes start to climb off the floor, there is even more incentive not to waste a drop. As the head of shipping advisory at classification society DNV GL Hans Merten Stein presciently explained in a late-2017 paper How to achieve energy efficiency excellence, “as fuel prices will most likely rise again, shipping companies cannot afford to leave this stone unturned.” Surprising then, that a lot of shipping companies are doing just that. As the paper cautions, “few vessels achieve the savings they

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

could reap in practice”. The technology is certainly there to do so. Cummins’ recently released X15 engine for instance, uses the latest iteration of its XPI common-rail fuel system that delivers the highest injection pressure of rival products, according to the American manufacturer. The X15 is also allied with Cummins’ CM2350 engine control module, which diagnoses and monitors the X15’s performance. The CM2350 system can automatically de-rate the engine and even shut it down if something goes seriously amiss and catastrophic failure is imminent. Twinned with the XPI system, CM2350 also features sensors


that monitor fuel use, an increasingly important function given that fuel accounts for roughly half the operational costs of running a ship.

Fuel-sipping technology

IMO is putting increasing pressure on fuel-system manufacturers to deliver frugal and efficient technology, as it tightens up regulations on energy efficiency in new ships. The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) recently adopted draft amendments to regulation 21 of Marpol Annex VI, which covers the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI). These latest amendments refer in particular to cargo and roro passenger ships, but it is an ongoing programme. One outcome of these mandatory regulations will be that operators must start collecting reams of data on their use of fuel oil, beginning in January 2019. This information is then fed into the IMO’s database on the consumption of shipping fuel. First launched in March 2018, the database is literally growing by the minute. MEPC is also enforcing closer oversight on the quality of the fuel pumped through the systems, which has a direct affect on manufacturers. Such is the organisation’s determination to clean up the ocean air that it is considering drawing up guidance for purchasers, users and providers of fuel oil. As IMO formally puts it: “The best practices are intended to assist in assuring the quality of

fuel oil delivered to – and used – onboard ships, with respect to both compliance with the Marpol requirements and the safe and efficient operation of the ship.” Further pressure is being heaped on fuel-system manufacturers in the form of the global cap on the use of marine fuel sulphur. Due to be enforced in 2020, the new standards will require ships to use marine fuels with a sulphur content of no more than 0.5%. That is a whole lot less than the current limit of 3.5% and the impact will be commensurately profound. As Shell noted in an early-2018 study entitled IMO 2020: What’s Next?: “The impact of this transition represents approximately 75% of global marine fuel demand when compared with emission control areas (ECA – which require 0.1% sulphur content.”

The impact of this transition represents approximately 75% of global marine fuel demand when compared with emission control areas

According to Shell’s calculations, bunkers holding a total of 3M b/d of high-sulphur fuel oil will need to switch to the 0.5% standard through blending with gasoil. That means that fuel systems will have to rise to the occasion and handle different mixes. As Shell summarises: “There will be a need for a larger variability in fuel quality.” Most of the current crop of fuel-management systems rely on sensors that measure the flow right down to the last drop. As ABB pointed out in an explanation of how its CoriolisMaster system works: “Fuel consumption is energy consumption and energy is directly related to the mass of the fuel. Therefore direct mass flow measurement is the key to highly accurate energy management.” But accurately measuring fuel at sea is more challenging that doing so on terra firma. On the ocean waves systems must keep working at full efficiency under heavy vibrations, not only within the engineroom but when the vessel encounters rough conditions. Even in this most testing of environments, the CoriolisMaster delivers mass flow measurement down to 0.1% accuracy. The system works at high frequencies of about 400 hz, isolated from the usual noisy vibration frequencies ranging from minus 10 hz to 200 hz that are normally encountered in enginerooms. Flow-measurement equipment must be extremely robust and the CoriolisMaster can withstand outer installation forces of up to 40 tonnes.

Gold standard

Fuel systems are increasingly being configured for LPT and other alternative fuels

The Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP), introduced in 2013, was one of the first steps in the campaign to clean up marine engine emissions. The plan – which provides guidelines for measuring fuel flow – applies to every vessel over 400 gt. SEEMP is considered a gold standard when it comes to cost-management and helping operators get the most from their fuel. Thus, systems such as ABB’s CoriolisMaster have to be SEEMP-compliant. Embedded within SEEMP is yet another abbreviation, the Energy Efficiency Operational Indicator (EEOI). This is a template that enables operators to gauge the effect of any changes they make in the way they run their vessels. “The SEEMP urges the shipowner

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


and operator at each stage of the plan to consider new technologies and practices when seeking to optimise the performance of a ship,” IMO says. And there are a lot of new technologies and practices, ranging from better planning of voyages so less fuel is consumed between ports, to more frequent cleaning of the propeller to prevent fouling, and even the installation of a new propeller (many operators are surprised at the improvement in fuel economy achieved by installing the latest design). One of the more expensive but effective technical fuel-saving measures cited by SEEMP is the fitting of waste heat recovery systems, that convert otherwise lost energy into power. Hence SEEMP is one of the drivers behind the constant improvement in fuel systems. Under the umbrella of the EEDI, which mandates a minimum fuel-efficiency level for different ship types and sizes, IMO keeps on tightening the screws. Following the introduction of the EEDI in January 2013, the level is tightened incrementally every five years; 2018 marks the first fiveyear increment. The purpose of the EEDI was to speed up the development of the technology underpinning the many components involved in fuel efficiency, from the design phase up. The regulations are not however prescriptive; they do not tell shipowners exactly how to make their vessels as fuel efficient as possible. Rather, they allow them to adopt those technologies that, in their judgement, offer the best route to fuel economy. According to the EEDI, as long as the required energy level is attained, ship designers and builders are free to use the most costefficient solutions for the ship to comply with the regulations. As the relevant bunkering infrastructure improves, alternative fuels are finding favour with operators that had initially been nervous of investing in technology before the shore-side industry was ready. In tandem, fuel systems are being reconfigured to accommodate low-flashpoint fuels under the IGF code, another mandatory IMO instrument applying to all gaseous and lowflashpoint fuels, such as LNG and CNG, in the maritime sector. (The exception is gas carriers, which come under a different code applying to vessels carrying liquefied gases in bulk.) As under the EEDI code, shipowners are free to choose what system they believe best meets the regulations. All they need to do is demonstrate that the design of their ship meets the general requirements of the IGF code.

However, as DNV GL’s Mr Stein suggests, there is mounting evidence that a lot of potential savings are being left on the table. DNV GL believes that a comprehensive strategy that takes every element into account, including fuel systems, is necessary to take a vessel’s operations to the next level. “Especially medium-sized and large fleet owners, managers and operators can improve their energy management significantly,” he said.

“Often many smaller measures add up to substantial savings. Taking a holistic approach by combining these measures to deliver the greatest possible benefit is the key”

There may not, however, be a quick fix. “Often many smaller measures add up to substantial savings. Taking a holistic approach by combining these measures to deliver the greatest possible benefit is the key,” said Mr Stein. But when fuel systems and all the related infrastructure, human and technological, is in place, the results are impressive. According to DNV GL’s experience with several large clients, the benefits are easily quantified. A bulk carrier can save between 7 and 13.5% in ship operations alone (quite apart from savings achieved through purchasing, bunkering and other avenues). And, reflecting the SEEMP methodology, further savings still come from better management of the general condition of the ship. According to DNV GL’s calculations, another 5 to 10% can often be gained from cleaning the hull (and propeller) at the right time, or from choosing the most efficient coating for the hull. Typically, the biggest savings are achieved from improvements in the operation of the ship, rather than from engine monitoring. But the latter is still important. Engine monitoring provides realtime read-outs of how well – or otherwise – the entire power unit is functioning. And if auxiliary engines are included in the monitoring process, another 1.5 to 5% of savings can be delivered, according to DNV GL's estimates. In the drive to use every drop, no stone can be left unturned. MP

7 - 13.5%

5 - 10%

1.5 - 5%

Possible savings for a bulk carrier in ship operations alone when fuel systems optimised

Potential savings achieved by cleaning the hull and propeller at the right time, or from choosing the most efficient coating for the hull

Potential savings achieved by including auxiliary engines in the engine-monitoring process

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Alternative technologies C

onsidered little short of fantasy a few years ago, a range of alternative power systems that would revolutionise – or even eliminate – fuel systems is coming closer to reality. The main alternative systems are the usual suspects of batteries and fuel cells. But wind power is also being treated seriously. An inexhaustible source of energy, it is making a comeback after being largely replaced in commercial maritime traffic since the advent of the steam age. As classification society DNV GL noted in a paper entitled Alternative fuels and technologies for greener shipping: “For thousands of years wind was the primary energy source used to propel ships, apart from human muscles. Today, wind-assisted propulsion is understood to be a potential method of reducing fossil energy consumption.” At the forefront of this technology is Norsepower’s Rotor Sail, which the UN’s Global Compact sees as a game-changer. Already installed on a tanker vessel and on the ferry Viking Grace, the Rotor Sail harnesses the so-called Magnus Effect, created as the wind meets the spinning rotor, accelerating on one side and slowing down on the other. The result is a lift force that creates extra forward propulsion. The Helsinki-based group estimates that the device can reduce the fuel consumption of long-haul vessels by about 20%. But while wind power remains an interesting topic, it is battery power that remains the most likely technology to become mainstream. Plummeting costs in

The Viking Grace, equipped with a ’potentially game-changing’ Rotor Sail

For thousands of years wind was the main agent of propulsion for marine vessels. With diesel on its way out, might this most natural energy source be due a comeback?

battery manufacturing, allied to big leaps forward in storage capacity, make this technology very attractive to shipping. As are fuel cells, the preferred option of many engineers and scientists. These convert the chemical energy contained in a fuel directly into electrical and thermal energy through a process known as electrochemical oxidation. Depending on the type of fuel cell and fuel that is used, a direct conversion could enable electrical efficiencies of up to 60%. Fuel-cell systems also offer the huge advantage of greatly reducing the vibration and noise that have long been the bane of combustion-driven vessels. As fuelcelled powerplants and other alternatives start to emerge on a commercial scale, the IMO codes will have to be re-designed accordingly and appropriate regulations are already under development. One of the first manufacturers to commit to the development of maritime fuel cells is ABB, working in collaboration with Ballard Power Systems. In a joint release in May, the companies were

optimistic that fuel-cell power systems have a big future. “The [system] is anticipated to play a significant part in accelerating the industry-wide adoption of sustainable solutions for marine e-mobility and help ship-owners meet the increasingly tough demands for clean operations,” they said. There is a long way to go though, as the collaborators acknowledge. At present, fuelcell technology lacks the grunt required by commercial shipping, operating on a kW scale. But ABB and Ballard are confident they can come up with the kind of MW-sized power required by larger ships. They have already done a lot of homework on the benefits. A powerplant with an electrical-generating capacity of 3 MW, equivalent to 4,000 hp, would fit within a single module no bigger than a traditional marine engine running on fossil fuels. Encouragingly, Ballard has already proved the potential for the maritime sector by building a working MW-scale, landbased fuel cell system. ABB has also been working independently on fuel cells for marine applications for some time. The group has a pilot installation project up and running and president of ABB’s industrial automation division Peter Terwiesch sees virtually unlimited potential in providing power systems for a new era. “The next generation of ships – electrical, digital and connected – will require energy sources that are not only able to meet the increasing demand for fuel efficiency, but will also enable cleaner and safer shipping,” he said. MP

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018



Ammonia marine fuel ‘unlikely’ before 2030 Ammonia has been touted as the fuel of the future, but the technology is far from proven and reservations remain


lthough recent reports have advocated use of ammonia as a fuel to drive shipping toward a decarbonised future, MAN Energy Solutions head of advanced engineering Alexander Knafl said the fuel’s viability was probably more than a decade away. Speaking to Marine Propulsion ahead of the MAN Energy Solutions SMM 2018 forums on the subject of future fuels, Dr Knafl noted that, while multiple researchers have already shown ammonia to be a viable fuel for internal combustion engines in laboratory studies, there are still a litany of reasons why ammonia’s advent is firmly fixed to a distant horizon. “Ammonia (NH3) is both caustic and considered extremely hazardous,” he said. “Utilising NH3 for maritime propulsion will require the development of new safety standards, installation of infrastructure and, most importantly, the availability of large quantities of renewable ammonia.” “This is an unlikely scenario in the next 10 years,” Dr Knafl concluded. And in order for ammonia to be a truly carbon-free fuel, Dr Knafl pointed out, it will have to be electro-chemically produced from renewable energy rather than from carboncontaining natural gas (methane) or liquefied petroleum gasses (LPG), the most common ammonia production methods in use today. In the immediate term, Dr Knafl cited the relatively widespread availability of LNG as the driver for an increasing demand from MAN customers for dual-fuel engines. Dual-fuel engines’ flexibility to run on liquid or gas fuels offers owners and operators insurance in areas where LNG distribution infrastructure is lacking, he said, and simultaneously works to create opportunities for expansion within the LNG bunkering sector. MAN Energy Solutions’ Bjarne Foldager, who will be a speaker at MAN’s 2018 SMM forums on the subject of future, fuels talked

to Marine Propulsion in July about IMO’s landmark greenhouse gas (GHG) agreement and where the business is placing its bets on 21st-century technologies. Demand for fuels that comply with 0.5% sulphur restrictions coming into effect in 2020 are bound to increase, according to Dr Knafl. Heavy fuel oil (HFO) use in conjunction with scrubbers could potentially increase, depending on price differences between HFO and lowsulphur fuels, he said, but only for a short time due to industry commitments to achieve IMO’s forthcoming GHG reduction targets. In the longer term, Dr Knafl said decarbonisation efforts will have to go “hand-inhand with alternative renewable fuels of all sorts of PtX streams”. PtX is shorthand for power-to-energy conversion technologies, wherein the variable (X) can be substituted with a number of different fuel sources. “PtX fuels being mostly very clean,” Dr Knafl said, “will allow for further optimisation of the engine working process, resulting in increased efficiency and lower emissions. From today’s perspective, there are a number of fuel candidates, both gaseous and liquid.” MP MAN Energy solutions will be holding a series of seminars at SMM 2018 in Hamburg. Future fuels will be discussed along with decarbonisation, energy efficiency and the impacts of digitalisation.

Snapshot CV

Alexander Knafl (MAN Energy Solutions)

Alexander Knafl is MAN Energy Solutions head of advanced engineering and exhaust aftertreatment. Dr Knafl has had research published in a number of different publications and received his PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan in the US. Prior to working with MAN Energy Solutions, Dr Knafl worked as senior engineer at PACCAR Automotive.

“Utilising NH3 for maritime propulsion will require the development of new safety standards, installation of infrastructure and, most importantly, the availability of large quantities of renewable ammonia”

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


Why the bunker industry is the perfect testbed for blockchain Blockchain technology is set to increase transparency and traceability in the marine fuel supply chain, according to Bloc CEO Deanna MacDonald

Deanna MacDonald (Bloc): “We will release the demo version, open for the industry … during some of the major shipping conferences“ (image by Igor Grochev/Shutterstock. com, courtesy of Bloc)


BIA, Bimco and other shipping industry bodies have joined a collaborative effort to evaluate blockchain as a financial platform for bunkering transactions. Deanna Macdo, the CEO of Blockchain Labs for Open Collaboration (Bloc), the group facilitating the effort, predicts blockchain will soon be a feature of other maritime value chains. “There will be several ways in which we see this system moving forward and affecting the industry at large,” Ms MacDonald said. Lloyd’s Register Foundation and Bloc are funding the blockchain tests. The two groups partnered in early 2018, and Bloc created a subsidiary called the Maritime Blockchain Labs (MBL) in March, with Lloyd’s Register Foundation as the lead funder. MBL has funding for three experimental ‘demonstrator’ projects that are aimed at building blockchain systems for maritime industry participants to test, assessing risks associated with blockchain, and encouraging the industry to adopt the distributed ledger systems. In the first project, all parties will have defined roles in testing blockchain’s ability to securely facilitate and accurately record bunkering payments and store data on bunker operators and fuel quality. Ms MacDonald said the bunkering-sector blockchain demonstrator project had already begun, the beta version of the technology had been built and the system will be showcased at high-profile shipping events in late 2018. “We are currently in the testing phase together with our consortia,” she said. “We will release the demo version, open for the industry … during some of the major shipping conferences.” In the initial blockchain system, Ms MacDonald said users will be able to log in through a portal and, after they have verified their identification, they will be given a user profile according to their role in the bunkering supply chain: “for example, supplier, purchaser, broker, regulator”.

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

Bloc is also building an API (an interface any existing system can plug into) so that anyone requesting data from the bunkering blockchain project can use its information with their own systems. “We will be looking to partner with any relevant companies or agencies that would have use for this data in their application or solution, such as e-BDN (bunker delivery note) providers, for example,” Ms MacDonald said. MBL identified the bunker industry as an ideal case study for blockchain in shipping, due to its “multiple, complex transactions” where blockchain technology can “increase transparency [and] create better compliance and stronger governance,” according to Ms MacDonald. IBIA and Bimco are both playing advisory roles in the first project, according to a Bloc statement. Bimco is advising on contractual elements of the project, having recently published a standard set of terms and conditions for the purchase of marine fuels that it hopes will be widely adopted by bunker traders and suppliers. IBIA will be an advisor to the project to help define methods for tracing and accounting for the quality of bunker fuels. Ms MacDonald said both organisations’ participation would allow Bloc to “cross regulatory boundaries”. “By bringing in entities such as Bimco and IBIA … we can identify areas where regulation might be impeding our goals of transparency and accountability in the marine fuels market,” she said. Part of the project’s intent would be to demonstrate a regulatory framework that supports – rather than impedes – transparency and accountability in marine fuels. Ms MacDonald said one example could be Blockchain “Smart Contracts” based on “harmonised terms and conditions” such as Bimco’s Bunker Terms 2018. In that scenario, she said ports throughout the world could pass information to each other and use the information to better enforce compliance.


World Fuel Services’ new 2,200 m3 capacity cargo vessel, Lizrix

WFS adds capacity and fuel segregation ahead of 2020 World Fuel Services (WFS) has added a new fuel supply vessel in the UK as part of what the group says is its preparation for a change in fuel needs following introduction of global limits on sulphur in fuel in 2020. Bunker supply vessel Lizrix will be stationed at WFS’ current supply terminal in Falmouth, UK, where WFS says it will also be upgrading facilities to “meet customer needs beyond 2020”. Bringing an extra 2,200 m3 of bunkering capacity to the region, Lizrix offers the capability to segregate fuel into five different grades and has an average pumping rate of 300-400 m3 per hour, according to WFS.

The Lizrix is equipped with a pump in each tank instead of the single pump per grade found in some tankers where only two or three grades of fuel are carried. Having two valve separation points then allows each pair of the five pairs of tanks on board to be utilised separately from the others making five grades possible. Specifics of the upgrades to WFS’ Falmouth facility have not been revealed. WFS currently offers compliant fuel to ships transiting Europe’s emission control areas (ECAs) from the facility, which the group said it considers to be strategically important. Regulations mandate that sulphur levels in fuel burned in European ECAs are below 0.1%. Impending IMO regulations on

sulphur in fuel, which come into force on 1 January 2020, will dictate the maximum amount of sulphur in fuel, globally, outside of the stricter ECA limits, to be 0.5%. Last week five of the largest shipowner associations sought to put pressure on IMO member states to ease enforcement of the sulphur cap when it comes into force. Bimco, the International Chamber of Shipping, Intercargo, Intertanko and the World Shipping Council cited the lack of a transitional period and the global availability of compliant fuels in a request for port state control authorities to give shipping companies time to become compliant.

MAN grants NOLs to cylinder oil blends MAN Energy Solutions has dispensed two no-objection letters (NOLs) for cylinder oil blends used in field trials on one of the manufacturer’s two-stroke engine models. Chevron developed the cylinder oil blends and tested them on MAN’s B&W two-stroke model 6S90ME-C8 using MAN’s automated cylinder oil mixing system. In the first field test, Chevron blended its 140 base number (BN) product, Taro Special HT Ultra – developed for use in slow-speed vessels burning high-sulphur fuels – with its 25BN lubricant that can be used with low-sulphur, distillate and alternative fuels. The second NOL covers a blend of Chevron’s 100BN Taro Special HT 100 and the company’s Taro Special HT LF product. Chevron Marine Lubricants brand and marketing manager Ian Thurloway said “The Taro range of cylinder lubricants provides solutions for the varied range of engines, different fuels and the increasingly complex operating requirements that we are faced with.” MP

Chevron tested its Taro range of marine cylinder lubricants on a MAN engine

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


ABB’s “Electric. Digital. Connected.” strategy envisages shipping following the lead of automobiles (image: ABB)

E-mobility in shipping: Electric. Digital. Connected. The rapid development and adoption of new technology by consumers will transform shipping assumptions, according to ABB Marine and Ports senior vice president of digital solutions Mikko Lepistö


he growth in seaborne traffic is driven by global trends in GDP, but outside factors are now having a profound effect on the economics of transportation. These include accelerating urbanisation, urban pollution and digitalisation, which are transforming logistics and asset management. These trends have significant consequences for shipping: increased urbanisation can change shipping routes; electric (or hybrid) cars influence the

transition towards marine e-mobility, and, as the driverless automobile becomes a “when, not if” proposition, parallels with ship automation can easily be drawn. Car-makers are now prioritising R&D investment in electric cars, taking advantage of their relative simplicity, ease of control, convenient ability to be updated and energy efficiency when compared to conventional engines. These are concepts close to our heart, which is why, this year, ABB has affirmed its

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

affinity with e-mobility through our role as the title partner of ABB FIA Formula E Championship, the fully electric international FIA motorsport class.

The way to marine e-mobility

Returning to the maritime context, ABB’s “Electric. Digital. Connected.” strategy envisages shipping following the lead of automobiles and better exploiting battery power and higher levels of automation and autonomy. That said, each step in this


process would have to prove its value in terms of improved operational efficiency or enhanced safety, or indeed, both. While the debate around autonomous vessels and navigation rumbles on, we feel that too often it neglects to consider the fact that the power and drivetrains of the ships also need to evolve, to accommodate an increasingly automated shipping business. Ships must sustain fault scenarios and selfheal and electric systems can be easily diagnosed and reconfigured in a secure manner, even remotely. We also believe that the issues being debated on the future of autonomous ships may a little premature: chasing a hare that is not yet running, as it were. High levels of automation may indeed be appropriate where ships are operating on short distances close to shore and along repetitive routes, but that does not necessarily translate into a need for unmanned ships. Instead, a fully electric propulsion system, featuring batteries which are recharged by shoreside power, would likely mean lower continuous maintenance (no lubrication or filter changes, for example), which could be supported remotely, or by ad-hoc service visits. More generally, we do not believe that the removal of ship crews from oceangoing vessels is imminent: as well as being on hand to take control of the vessel, crews will continue to be needed to look after duties such as machinery maintenance, administration, communications and port calls, to name but a few. Rather than concentrating primarily on navigational safety issues, the ‘digital and connected’ ship debate should be focusing on the way electric propulsion can help automate aspects of ship functionality to the benefit of operating costs, safety and the environment.

Electric platform for intelligent ships

Already, shipboard sensors are routinely being used as a data source to optimise vessel operations and achieve just-intime delivery, with energy consumption reduced to a minimum. ABB Ability Collaborative Operations Centers are now harnessing cloud-based analytics to help prevent, predict and rectify remote equipment problems. Each day, ABB collects gigabytes of data from more than 900 connected vessels, with shore-

side experts offering remote support to engineers on board. With sensor technology deployment costs falling fast as volumes increase, current and near-term developments are expected to include lifecycle techniques, such as service robotics and additive printing to enable automatic and autonomous service operations. Elsewhere, the fast-developing LIDAR (light detection and ranging) technology allows radar and cameras to be combined with positioning data to achieve highly accurate machine vision and navigation. Our solution, ABB Ability Marine Pilot Vision, was delivered for the first time last November to a harbour ferry operator in Helsinki. ABB Ability Marine Pilot Vision fuses system and sensor data to give the bridge team a 360-degree, third-party view of the vessel in a real-world environment – much like a car driver would see using advanced parking assist systems. This eliminates blind spots and helps prevent accidents and related costs. We are also exploring technology that could support periodically unmanned bridge operations during uneventful parts of a voyage, with the clear objective of reducing fatigue and improving safety by enhancing the performance of crew when they are on the bridge. As experience from consumer markets shows, attitudes as well as technologies need to mature for trust and confidence to proceed to “next-level” usage. In the “step-bystep” scenario, the optimum electric, digital and connected technologies will be those that best support bridge teams in the safe delivery of ship and cargo, on schedule and with minimal environmental impact. In the short term, these will be the technologies that support crews in achieving faster turnarounds in port and so allow for lower speeds to the next destination, thus saving fuel. They will be the technologies that speed up regulatory compliance and maintenance, or improve business-critical ship functions, such as maneuvering and mooring. And they will be the technologies that best support crews in their role as guardians, alert and able to intervene whenever safety, efficiency or environmental responsibility is compromised. We believe that the technologies that we develop today will lay a solid foundation for the automated ships of tomorrow. MP

Snapshot CV

Mikko Lepistö (ABB)

Mikko Lepistö is globally responsible for the software and automation business at ABB’s Marine and Ports business. Mr Lepistö has held several global management positions within ABB in the service, automation and software businesses. His role is to develop the next generation of digital solutions and services to support the transition towards electric, digital and connected vessels.

The optimum electric, digital and connected technologies will be those that best support bridge teams in the safe delivery of ship and cargo, on schedule and with minimal environmental impact

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018


MAN Energy Solutions says the decarbonised future is still combustible MAN Energy Solutions’ Bjarne Foldager talked to Marine Propulsion about IMO’s landmark greenhouse gas (GHG) agreement and where the business is placing its bets on 21st-century technologies

W Bjarne Foldager (MAN Energy Solutions): “I think the IMO resolutions and regulations are a piece of art on doing what is actually possible”

“I know diesel is not the politically correct term to use these days, but if you look at diesel as the combustion principle, it is the most efficient principle that exists today”

ith increased public focus on sustainability, climate change and the role of corporations in safeguarding the environment, it makes sense for the shipping industry and MAN, as a company, to present itself as environmentally friendly. Marine propulsion manufacturing giant MAN is "very supportive" of IMO’s initial strategy on greenhouse gas emissions, according to the group’s head of two-stroke engines, Bjarne Foldager. “With these ambitious targets, I think shipping has a great opportunity to improve its reputation as the most environmentally friendly form of transportation that exists,” he said. One as-yet unsurpassed method of internal combustion engineering, however, remains a core tenet of MAN’s forward-looking business strategy. “I know diesel is not the politically correct term to use these days, but if you look at diesel as the combustion principle, it is the most efficient principle that exists today,” Mr Foldager said. LNG is one of MAN’s top fuel choices to reap the benefits of diesel’s highly efficient highpressure combustion. LNG also offers the benefit of reducing some of the greenhouse gas emissions created when burning other fuels – for two-stroke engines, at least. It is a case of picking the right fuel for the right technology, he said, as eliminating methane emissions means preventing a gas from entering the atmosphere that, according to EPA estimates, absorbs 28-36 times more energy (warming the globe more efficiently) than carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. “To reduce by at least 50% greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 … I think it is possible, at least from a technology point of view,” he said. Referencing IMO’s stairstep process for reducing greenhouse gas emissions – whereby IMO divides its GHG reduction strategy along a timeline of short-, mid- and long-term goals – Mr Foldager said eliminating emissions from

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2018

methane slip will be one of the short-term goals on the IMO roadmap. “Within the next five years, IMO will come up with something on methane slip to reduce the long-term impact of methane in the greenhouse gas calculations,” he said. Mr Foldager said the industry has 10 years to figure out which future technologies to focus on if it hopes to be able to meet the goal of curbing emissions by at least 50% by 2050. “Any slowing down of the uptake of these regulations and the quick fixes that need to happen in the next 10 years just pushes that horizon out even further,” he warned. In the long term, Mr Foldager said LNG will be one of the fuels to feature in the industry/ IMO calculation, but it will not be the only fuel. Citing current growth projections, he said measures such as speed reductions and eliminating methane slip would not be enough and that the industry would need new fuel technologies to achieve IMO targets. One important task for IMO, he said, would be to carefully consider how it calculates the footprint of different types of fuel before they become widely adopted. “Do you include the upstream process?” he asked, rhetorically. “If you have biofuel, you could argue that it is carbon-negative when it reaches the ship. But of course, you still emit CO2 when you combust it and use it aboard the ship. But then the total impact from that fuel could be close to zero, I guess. It all depends how the calculation is done by IMO.” In conclusion, MAN is keen to explore new opportunities, while keeping its feet on the ground. Mr Foldager surmised: “When we compare the different technologies, we basically come to the conclusion that the internal combustion engine is by far the most efficient. This is the technology that we will focus on for the foreseeable future.” MP

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Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery August/September 2018  

First published in 1979, Marine Propulsion is the sector’s undisputed leader. There is an all-new email for you to reach our market leading...

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery August/September 2018  

First published in 1979, Marine Propulsion is the sector’s undisputed leader. There is an all-new email for you to reach our market leading...