Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Shipping Line Continues Testing To Improve Environmental Performance Of Freight Vessels

MOL Pursue Decrease of Fuel Use and Emissions
Shipping News Feature

JAPAN – Regular readers with an interest in the reduction in emissions from shipping generally, and container lines, bulk carriers and ferries in particular, will be familiar with the work being undertaken by Mitsui OSK Line (MOL) in the course of their ‘ISHIN’ projects from ISHIN l over a year ago through ll and latterly lll. Now the versatile freight group have released the latest results of tests they have conducted to improve vessel performance.

In their quest to reduce CO2 and fuel consumption MOL has been verifying the environmental advantages to be had by utilising continuous operation of the main engine in all load ranges, by increasing the output of the engine’s auxiliary blower motor.

Generally, the main engine of an ocean shipping vessel takes air into the combustion chamber using an auxiliary blower for low speeds or low-load ranges, and a turbocharger for high speeds or in high-load ranges. However, continuous operation of the engine in-between range has been difficult due to degraded combustion and increased exhaust gas temperature caused by air shortage. MOL’s recent tests have verified that increasing the output of the auxiliary blower motor ensures a sufficient air supply to allow continuous operation in all load ranges.

Low-speed vessel operation is an effective way to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Allowing for vessel operation without limiting load ranges opens up more opportunities for low-speed operation than ever before. It is also one of the basic technologies for the “ISHIN-III” series of next-generation vessels MOL announced as an initiative to reduce the environmental impact of its ocean shipping operations.

‘Slow Steaming’ is one of the routes the international shipping groups are taking to improve efficiency throughout an industry very much under the environmental spotlight. MOL tell us they will continue to test and appraise the latest tests by studying ways to apply the results of this latest series of tests to its operating vessels as it works toward ongoing reduction of CO2 emissions.

 Photo: The MOL 300,000-ton very large crude carrier (VLCC) Kazusa