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Lubmarine: Critical steps to delivering effective marine engine lubrication

Marketing director Serge Dal Farra explains three steps of effective engine lubrication including right engine oil selection and proper monitoring strategy.





The following is an article written by Serge Dal Farra, Marketing Manager of marine lubricant provider Lubmarine, who shares three steps of effective engine lubrication including the right engine oil selection, proper monitoring strategy and the critical role of engineers to support decision making.

It also includes the announcement of Lubmarine’s new Category II MAN ES approved Talusia HD 40 lubricant:

The development of low sulfur fuels through the introduction of IMO2020 has been the most significant change to the way in which the global fleet has been powered since the introduction of the diesel engines in the maritime industry a little over 100 years ago. 

Whilst the use of low sulfur fuels has clear benefits on emissions reductions, what has been proven is that challenges around fuel quality -especially early 2020- have brought real issues for modern 2-stroke marine engines.

For not only are these engines sensitive to corrosion but they also face an increased risk of engine deposit build up – potentially leading to problems including notably ring pack damage.

What is without question is that selecting the right cylinder oil in tandem with a properly managed Monitoring Programme in the post IMO2020 landscape has never been more important than it is today.

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Selecting the Right Lubricant

Here at Lubmarine we have developed a range of tailored lubrication formulations designed specifically to manage today’s modern marine engines, for all IMO2020 compliant fuels including LNG.

Our premium product Talusia Universal is a fully OEM approved cylinder oil with a patented chemistry, proven with over 125,000,000 successful operating hours. 

Tests show that Talusia Universal demonstrates a significant cleaning ability (detergency) and provides higher residual BN, enabling ship operators to optimize their feed rate and maintain the lube oil into the safe limits determined by the OEM’s.

Additionally, Talusia Universal has been approved by WinGD as a “Dual Fuel validated” product, one of the few cylinder oils on the market to have obtained this achievement.

The latest entry in the Lubmarine Talusia range of cylinder lubricant is Talusia HD 40 for which MAN ES has granted a NOL Category II meaning this product has excellent overall performance with a special focus on cleaning ability and is applicable for all engines types and recommended for MAN B&W two-stroke engines Mark 9 and higher, providing operators with increased safety margins for very demanding engines.

“We are delighted with this latest recognition from MAN ES and we believe this new generation of cylinder lubricant will provide added safety margin for the ship operators,” said Stuart Fuller, Lubmarine’s Market Liaison & Product Manager responsible for MAN ES.

Taking a Multi-Layered Approach to Engine Cleanliness

Using the right lubricant in the right amount to deliver optimum performance and effective engine cleanliness is just one piece in the puzzle.

Rising to the challenge requires an understanding of the multiple operating parameters of the engine, combined with smart engine monitoring and drain oil analysis and interpretation - something that can only be achieved with the support of a lubricant specialist.

By carefully and regularly monitoring lubricant and vessel machinery condition, ship owners together with their oil supplier can proactively detect and react to any abnormalities.

All OEM guidelines recommend careful engine monitoring and a sophisticated intelligence-led approach allowing for the most prudent management of two stroke marine engines.

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Implementing A Robust Monitoring Programme

Implementing an effective Drain Oil Analysis Programme is a simple, reliable and a proven way of helping optimize operations through lubricant consumption and component wear analysis.

LubInsight Neo: Tapping into the Benefits of A New Range of Inter-connected Onboard Digital Analysis Services

We are now taking this approach to new and data-focused levels, with the launch of a new range of fully digitalized, interconnected global on-board lubricant sampling and testing services.

Operators on board are guided through easy to follow, step-by-step on screen instructions when carrying out drain oil analysis without the need for specialist training, with the highly accurate test results uploaded onto the customers’ dedicated Lubmarine portal.

Not only do the new services - LubInsight Neo - enable vessel operators and owners to upgrade their onboard testing laboratory facilities, but they also deliver real-time interconnectivity between crews on the vessel, all on shore operations, owners, operators and global teams involved in the running and maintenance of the vessel.

The Human Element - Specialist Knowledge and Interpretation

The third layer in achieving optimum engine performance including its cleanliness profile is to enlist the support of highly experienced engineers to assist with lubrication optimization and any lubrication issues vessel operators might be experiencing. 

This level of support can include: 

  • Ship engine inspections and trouble-shooting
  • Lubrication survey and technical investigations
  • Shipyard and switchover support
  • Crew and onshore teams trainings from lubrication basics to high level lubrication strategies


There is no single solution to achieving the benefits that LOFR optimization can deliver. It takes a multilayered approach, utilizing the tools and knowledge with the support of a technical team and the infrastructure of a specialist lubricant manufacturer with the range of services available to support vessel operators.


Photo credit: Lubmarine
Published: 15 July, 2022

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Kambara Kisen orders methanol dual-fuel bulker from Tsuneishi Shipbuilding

Firm ordered a 65,700-dwt methanol dual-fuel dry bulk carrier with Tsuneishi Shipbuilding; MOL signed a basic agreement on time charter for the newbuilding that is slated to be delivered in 2027.





Kambara Kisen orders methanol dual-fuel bulker from Tsuneishi Shipbuilding

Japanese shipowner Kambara Kisen has ordered a 65,700-dwt methanol dual-fuel dry bulk carrier newbuilding from Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd, according to Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) on Wednesday (20 September).

MOL said it signed a basic agreement on time charter for the newbuilding that is slated to be delivered in 2027. 

The vessel will be designed to use e-methanol produced primarily by synthesising recovered CO2 and hydrogen produced using renewable energy sources, and bio-methanol derived from biogas. 

The vessel's design maximises cargo space while ensuring sufficient methanol tank capacity set to allow the required navigational distance assuming various routes, at the same time maximising cargo space. 

MOL added the vessel is expected to serve mainly in the transport of biomass fuels from the east coast of North America to Europe and the U.K. and within the Pacific region, as well as grain from the east coast of South America and the U.S. Gulf Coast to Europe and the Far East.

Details on the time-charter contract:

Shipowner: Kambara Kisen wholly owned subsidiary
Charterer: MOL Drybulk Ltd.
Charter period 2027: -

Details on the newbuilding methanol dual fuel bulk carrier:

LOA: About 200 m
Breadth: About 32.25 m
Draft: About 13.80 m
Deadweight: About 65,700 MT
Hold capacity: About 81,500m3
Shipyard: Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd.

Photo credit: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines
Published: 22 September, 2023

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Argus Media: Alternatives may drive methanol market growth

Driven by low-carbon policies and regulations, the transportation sector — especially the marine fuels industry — could be a source of heightened demand, according to Argus.





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The growth of sustainable alternatives to traditional methanol production sources likely will shape the market over the next several years, industry leaders said this week at the Argus Methanol Forum.

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Driven by low-carbon policies and regulations, the transportation sector — especially the marine fuels industry — could be a source of heightened demand.

"The aim is to be net zero by 2050 but [those solutions are] expensive today and one of the main challenges to build e-methanol or bio-methanol plants is a huge queue for these pieces of equipment that aren't available," Anita Gajadhar, executive director for Swiss-based methanol producer Proman, said.

Bio-based and e-methanol plants of commercial scale, like Proman's natural gas-fed 1.9 million metric tonne/yr M5000 plant in Trinidad and Tobago, are not ready today.

"But that's not to say 10 years from now they won't be there," Gajadhar added.

Smaller projects are popping up. Dutch fuels and gas supplier OCI Global announced plans last week to double the green methanol capacity at its Beaumont, Texas, facility to 400,000 t/yr and will add e-methanol to production for the first time. Production will use feedstocks such as renewable natural gas (RNG), green hydrogen and biogas.

The globally oversupplied methanol market will not get any major supply additions starting in 2024 until 2027. But that oversupply will not last long, Gajadhar said.

Global demand has slowed this year, driven by stagnate economic growth and higher interest rates, according to industry observers.

As much as half of methanol demand is tied to GDP growth, with total methanol demand estimates at 88.9mn t globally in 2023. This is essentially flat from 2022, but up from 88.3m t in 2021 and 87.7mn t in 2020, Dave McCaskill, vice-president of methanol and derivatives for Argus Media's consulting service, said.

Demand is not expected to rebound to 2019 levels of 89.6mn t until 2024 or 2025, he added.

The period of oversupply combined with lackluster demand places methanol in a transition period, Gajadhar said, which opens the door for sustainable feedstock alternatives to shape market growth.

Danish container shipping giant Maersk and French marine logistics company CMA-CGM announced earlier this week a partnership to drive decarbonization in shipping. The partnership seeks to develop fuel and operations standards for bunkering with alternative fuels. The companies will develop net-zero solutions, including new technology and alternative fuels.

Maersk has previously ordered dual-fuel methanol-powered vessels and CMA-CGM LNG-propelled vessels.

The demand for alternative feedstock-derived fuels is there, but the ability to scale-up such production lags. Certified lower-carbon methanol produced using carbon capture and sequestration — also known as blue methanol— can ramp up much more quickly, according to Gajadhar.

By Steven McGinn

Photo credit and source: Argus Media
Published: 22 September, 2023

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Royal Caribbean completes over 12 weeks of bio bunker fuel testing in Europe

Firm expanded its biofuel testing this summer in Europe to two additional ships — Royal Caribbean International’s “Symphony of the Seas” and Celebrity Cruises’ “Celebrity Apex”.





Royal Caribbean completes over 12 weeks of bio bunker fuel testing in Europe

Royal Caribbean Group on Tuesday (19 September) said it successfully completed over 12 consecutive weeks of biofuel testing in Europe. 

Royal Caribbean International’s Symphony of the Seas became the first ship in the maritime industry to successfully test and use a biofuel blend in Barcelona to meet part of her fuel needs. 

The company confirmed onboard technical systems met operational standards, without quality or safety concerns, demonstrating the biofuel blend is a reliable “drop in” supply of lower emission energy that ships can use to set sail across Europe and beyond. 

The tests across Europe also provided valuable data to understand the availability and scalability of biofuel in the region, the firm added. 

Jason Liberty, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean Group, said: “This is a pivotal moment for Royal Caribbean Group’s alternative fuel journey.”

“Following our successful trial of biofuels this summer, we are one step closer to bringing our vision for net-zero cruising to life. As we strive to protect and promote the vibrant oceans we sail, we are determined to accelerate innovation and improve how we deliver vacation experiences responsibly.”

President of the Port of Barcelona, Lluís Salvadó, said: “Royal Caribbean’s success is a clear example of how commitment to innovation makes possible the development of solutions to decarbonise the maritime sector.”

“In this case, it involves the cruise sector and focuses on biofuels, an area in which the Port of Barcelona is already working to become an energy hub, producing and supplying zero carbon fuels, such as green hydrogen and ammonia, and of other almost zero-carbon alternative fuels, such as methanol, biofuels or synthetic fuels. Innovation and collaboration between ports and shipping companies is key to accelerate the decarbonisation of maritime transport.”

The company began testing biofuels last year and expanded the trail this summer in Europe to two additional ships — Royal Caribbean International’s Symphony of the Seas and Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Apex

The sustainable biofuel blends tested were produced by purifying renewable raw materials like waste oils and fats and combining them with fuel oil to create an alternative fuel that is cleaner and more sustainable. The biofuel blends tested are accredited by International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC), a globally recognized organization that ensures sustainability of biofuels and verifies reductions of related emissions.

With Symphony of the Seas departing from the Port of Barcelona and Celebrity Apex departing from the Port of Rotterdam, both ships accomplished multiple sailings using biofuel and contributed critical data on the fuel’s capabilities. 

“These results will help accelerate Royal Caribbean Group’s plans to continue testing the use of different types of biofuels on upcoming European sailings this fall. The company is exploring strategic partnerships with suppliers and ports to ensure the availability of biofuel and infrastructures to advance the maritime energy transition,” the firm said. 

Photo credit: Royal Caribbean Group 
Published: 22 September, 2023

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