Marine Methanol

Other methanol projects

+ Waterfront Shipping Methanol Tankers 2015-2019

Waterfront shipping, a methanol shipping specialist have currently plans to add 4 additional oceangoing tankers to their existing fleet of 7 vessels. The 49,000 dwt methanol tankers, able to operate on methanol fuel as a clean-burning option.

The new methanol tankers ordered is a joint-industry project where Waterfront Shipping, Marinvest, IINO Kaisha, Mitsui & Co. and NYK Group are involved. Where Waterfront Shipping has been chartering the vessels since the delivery in 2016. The plan is to have the 4 new tankers delivered in 2019, including a similar main engine, the MAN B&W ME-LGI 2-stroke dual-fuel type.

Waterfront, which operates the world’s largest fleet of methanol tankers, will charter the four newbuilds to support the growing global demand for methanol transportation.

+ LeanShips 2015-2019

LeanShips is a European Innovation Project (Horizon 2020 framework programme) based on seven, mostly full-scale demonstrators on board ships. The project aims to put innovations into practice by carrying out seven demonstrators show cases (Demo Cases) that combine technologies for efficient and less polluting vessels with end-users’ needs and requirements.

A major challenge that is faced by the marine industry is the reduction of greenhouse gases and harmful emissions like soot, nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sulphur oxides (SOx). Fuel selection criteria such as sustainability, scalability and storability has led to the selection of methanol as the most viable alternative for fossil fuels. As one of the most widely shipped chemicals in the world, methanol is already present in most terminals. It is also biodegradable and more environmentally friendly than oil-based fuels. Being liquid at atmospheric conditions is a major advantage in handling, distributing and storing methanol. Also, methanol burns cleaner and emits less pollutants than diesel. On top of this, methanol enables neutral CO2-emissions when it is produced from renewable electricity and captured CO2, the so-called green methanol

In this Demo Case a high-speed marine diesel engine has been converted with a methanol retrofit solution to dual-fuel operation in which the engine runs on both methanol and diesel. Ghent University and its partners Dredging International, Volvo Marine & Industry Center, Abeking & Rasmussen, Damen Shipyards and Methanex Europe, chose for the fumigation technology as a retrofit solution. The design requirements were to provide an easy and cost-effective retrofit solution that makes use of non-proprietary equipment, still providing full redundancy by enabling switching instantaneously between diesel and dual-fuel operation. The main advantage of the dual-fuel fumigation concept is its low cost, thanks to the low-pressure methanol supply system (injectors and pumps).

In dual-fuel operation methanol/diesel, a maximum relative increase of 12% in brake thermal efficiency was recorded and for respectively NO and soot emissions the average decreases over the entire load range were 60% and 77%. The maximum obtained methanol energy fraction amounted to 70%, and this without any major modifications or optimizations to the base diesel engine.

It is concluded from the measurements that dual-fuel operation on methanol/diesel has great potential. It allows efficiency increases while simultaneously reducing NOx and soot emissions. When methanol is produced from renewable resources, it has the potential to become a viable alternative for fossil fuels in the marine industry, fulfilling all requirements for a suitable alternative fuel: methanol is sustainable, scalable and storable. It is recommended that further research and demonstrations are set up in the near future with research institutes, engine manufacturers, ship owners, equipment manufacturers and other relevant stakeholders to further develop and commercialize dual fuel and/or dedicated engines on methanol. In this way the marine industry can further strengthen its commitment to tackle global warming and local air quality issues.

For more info see: LeanShips

+ Methaship 2014-2018

The MethaShip research project has found key advantages for using methanol in medium-speed marine engines for passenger shipping. The research project brought together partners from shipbuilding, classification, engine manufacturing and methanol production to investigate the potential of methanol as a fuel for cruise ships and roro passenger ferries.

It also included developing a cruise ship design featuring seven integrated storage tanks made of coated conventional mild steel.

The Methanol Institute reported that the findings of the project concluded renewable methanol offers a “long-term solution” for the industry’s carbon emissions reduction strategy; furthermore the MethaShip partners found methanol can offer a “dramatic” improvement in emissions reduction across multiple ship types once IMO has established the statutory framework conditions necessary for an industry-wide reduction of CO2 emissions.

The MethaShip research project consortium consisted of Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, Lloyd’s Register, Meyer Werft and associate partners Caterpillar, Helm AG and MAN Diesel & Turbo. It was funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

+ METHAPU 2006-2010

The strategic objectives of METHAPU project are as follows: 1. Assess the maturity of methanol using technology on board a commercial vessel 2. Validate marine compatible methanol running solid oxide fuel cell technology 3. Innovate necessary technical justifications for the use of methanol on board cargo vessels involved in international trade in order to support the introduction of necessary regulations to allowing the use of methanol as a marine fuel 4. Assess short-term and long-term environmental impacts of the application 5. Enable future research activities on larger marine compatible SOFC units and methanol based economy This specific targeted research project aims to validate methanol technology on board a cargo vessel involved in international trade. In addition to that, another major aim is to innovate necessary technical justifications for the use of renewable methanol on board commercial vessels in order to support the introduction of necessary regulations to allowing the use of methanol as a marine fuel. The specific components of the technology to be validated are methanol fuel bunkering, distribution, storage system and methanol consuming SOFC unit. The consortium is made up of world-class players in the field of fuel cell system integration, sustainable shipping, classification work and environmental assessment. The project is to take two and a half-year, of which one year is dedicated to the validation of the application. The regulations and technical justifications for the use of methanol as a fuel would serve to pave the way for commercial use of methanol consuming fuel cells on board commercial vessels. Furthermore, this research project serves as the springboard for future research activities related to sustainable society, specifically on new greener marine power sources and methanol based economy.

For more info see: METHAPU