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Mumbai seminar: Participants indicate confidence in methanol as a bunker fuel

With technological and regulatory challenges associated with methanol as a bunker fuel largely resolved, it’s time for the industry to embrace methanol, says organiser.

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With the technological and regulatory challenges associated with burning methanol as a bunker fuel largely resolved, it’s time for the industry to move forward and get ready to go green with methanol.

That was the view widely expressed at Rise of Methanol As A Future Proof Marine Fuel seminar held in Mumbai and online on Friday (29 April), says Sea Commerce America Inc, one of the seminar organisers.

It was back in August 2021 that methanol secured its position as a future marine fuel when A.P. Moller - Maersk announced an order for 12 large ocean-going container ships to operate on carbon-neutral methanol. 

This landmark order has raised the profile of this promising fuel. However, each shipowner faces unique challenges, and it is not enough to just follow Maersk’s lead and expect success. 

In the seminar the panel of experts spoke in detail on installation options, fuel cost and availability, bunkering infrastructure, and e-fuel production potential.

Today, methanol made from natural gas, offers a lifecycle GHG reduction of 5-15% compared to diesel as well as immediate reductions in SOx, NOx, and particulate matter. Methanol offers a 2% lower fuel consumption per kWh than diesel fuel, and engine corrosion and fuel slip are not an issue due to the high combustion rate achieved by the engine designers. 

In case of a spill, methanol is miscible in water, with near zero risk of damage to the environment and near zero potential harm to the wildlife. 

IMO regulations on handling methanol are well developed within the IGF Code and the Methyl/Ethyl Interim guidelines. Still to come could be rules for methanol bunkering and standards for fuel quality. 

Class oversight is well established. ABS, a pioneer in this, will class the Maersk vessels, and its safety evaluation will include design considerations such as the need for cofferdams between fuel tanks and fire risk areas, double-barriers and sealing systems, ventilation and gas detection, explosion mitigation, and redundancy.

The Maersk newbuilds will require larger bore engines than current dual-fuel methanol LGIM installations, and MAN expects a further increase in engine size to be available soon. This will open up the market for other large, ocean-going vessels, and MAN is already seeing a lot of interest in retrofits.

Berit Hinnemann from Maersk talked about the partnership Maersk has entered into with the producers of Green Methanol to supply their methanol-powered fleet. Maersk will require 10,000 tonnes in the year 2023 and 500,000 tonnes by mid-2025. 

Berit also mentioned that Maersk sees “methanol in combination with biodiesel for the pilot vessel as the only certain and scalable pathway towards significant impact this decade.”

These 16,000 TEU DF Maersk vessels are to be classed with ABS and will provide “20 percent improved energy efficiency per transported container”.

Mr. Vikrant Rai, took over the stage and presented the regulatory views on the subject. He also stressed upon the importance of port energy enhancements and ship energy enhancements.

The event was designed to address the needs of shipowners and operators, and moderated by Richard Clayton, Chief Correspondent at Lloyds List. Speakers, including the host and organiser Capt. Saleem Alavi, delved into the technical, commercial, and regulatory details. 

Top industry experts spoke on the occasion including Berit Hinnemann, Head of De-Carbonization Business Development at Maersk; Ayca Yalcin, Director Market Development EMEA at Methanex; Chris Chatterton, Chief Operating Officer at the Methanol Institute; Fredrik Stubner, Chief Executive Officer, Green Marine Engineering; Kjeld Aabo, Director New Technology at MAN Energy Solutions; Rene Laursen, Manager of Global Gas Solutions at ABS; Vijay Arora, Managing Director Indian Register of Shipping; Vikrant Rai, Engineer & Ship Surveyor cum-Deputy DG(Tech), Mumbai.

Most of the nearly 400 event participants indicated that they had more confidence in methanol’s viability as a bunker fuel after hearing from the expert presenters. 

The event organisers were Sea Commerce America Inc. and Institute of Marine Engineers of India’s Mumbai Branch and sponsored by Methanex, Canada and Methanol Institute, Singapore. 

 

Photo credit: Sea Commerce America Inc.
Published: 20 May, 2022

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LNG Bunkering

CMA CGM takes delivery of fourth LNG-fuelled containership

Naming ceremony and delivery of vessel, organised at HD Hyundai Mipo in Ulsan, South Korea, marked entry of the fourth vessel in a series of ten specially designed for Northern Europe feeder services.

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CMA CGM takes delivery of fourth LNG-fuelled containership

French shipping giant on Wednesday (19 June) said it celebrated the naming ceremony and delivery of its fourth LNG-fuelled container ship, CMA CGM Tivoli.

Organised at HD Hyundai Mipo in Ulsan, South Korea, on 16 June, the event marked the official entry of the fourth vessel in a series of ten specially designed for Northern Europe feeder services.

“Featuring optimised features for 45-foot containers, increased capacity for refrigerated containers, and innovative forward accommodation to enhance cargo loading and aerodynamics, CMA CGM Tivoli distinguishes itself with a high ‘length to beam" ratio to maximise hydrodynamic efficiency,” the firm said in a social media post. 

“She departed the shipyard on June 15th, 2024, bound for Busan. We wish fair winds and smooth seas to Captain Artur Dumbrov and his crew.” 

 

Photo credit: CMA CGM
Published: 21 June, 2024

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Methanol

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding receives orders for Japan’s first methanol-fuelled RoRo cargo ship duo

Two ships will be built at the Enoura Plant of MHI’s Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture, with scheduled completion and delivery by the end of fiscal 2027.

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Mitsubishi Shipbuilding receives orders for Japan's first methanol-fuelled RoRo cargo ship duo

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., a part of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group, on Wednesday (19 June) said it has received orders from Toyofuji Shipping and Fukuju Shipping for Japan's first methanol-fueled roll-on/roll-off (RORO) cargo ships. 

The two ships will be built at the Enoura Plant of MHI's Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture, with scheduled completion and delivery by the end of fiscal 2027.

The ships will be approximately 169.9 meters in overall length and 30.2 meters in breadth, with 15,750 gross tonnage, and loading capacity for around 2,300 passenger vehicles.

A windscreen at the bow and a vertical stem are used to reduce propulsion resistance, while fuel efficiency is improved by employing MHI's proprietary energy-saving system technology combing high-efficiency propellers and high-performance rudders with reduced resistance. 

The main engine is a high-performance dual-fuel engine that can use both methanol and A heavy fuel oil, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 10% compared to ships with the same hull and powered by fuel oil, contributing to a reduced environmental impact. 

In the future, the use of green methanol(2) may lead to further reduction in CO2 emissions, including throughout the lifecycle of the fuel. Methanol-fueled RORO ships have already entered into service as ocean-going vessels around the world, but this is the first construction of coastal vessels for service in Japan.

In addition, the significant increase in vehicle loading capacity and transport capacity per voyage compared to conventional vessels will provide greater leeway in the ship allocation schedule, securing more holiday and rest time for the crew, thereby contributing to working style reforms.

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, to address the growing needs from the modal shift in marine transport against the backdrop of CO2 reductions in land transportation, labor shortages, and working style reforms, will continue to work with its business partners to provide solutions for a range of societal issues by building ferries and RORO vessels with excellent fuel efficiency and environmental performance that contribute to stable navigation for customers.

 

Photo credit: Mitsubishi Shipbuilding
Published: 20 June, 2024

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Methanol

Maersk and Nike to christen methanol-fuelled boxship at Port of Los Angeles in August

Powered by methanol for its maiden voyage and capable of carrying more than 16,000 containers, the vessel will get its new name at a private ceremony at Port of Los Angeles Outer Harbor.

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Maersk

A.P. Moller – Maersk (Maersk) on Wednesday (19 June) said it will be christening one of the world’s first methanol-enabled vessels when it arrives in Los Angeles this August.

The firm invited the public to go aboard the container ship in Los Angeles.

Powered by methanol for its maiden voyage and capable of carrying more than 16,000 containers (TEU), the vessel will get its new name at a private ceremony at the Port of Los Angeles Outer Harbor on Tuesday, August 27. 

Maersk’s CEO Vincent Clerc will be on hand, alongside special guest speakers from Nike and leading state and local officials. Nike is a partner in the name-giving event.

“Nike is committed to protecting the future of sport and we leverage science-based targets to guide us through our Move to Zero journey,” said Venkatesh Alagirisamy, Nike Chief Supply Chain Officer.

“Operating one of the largest supply chains in the world, we have a responsibility to advance the innovation and use of more sustainable methods that get us closer to zero carbon and zero waste. By working with suppliers like Maersk, who share our commitment to sustainability, we are scaling our use of biofuels in ocean transportation, our main first-mile delivery channel.”

“This event is not only an opportunity to celebrate a remarkable engineering achievement, but the chance to highlight that we can navigate towards more sustainable supply chains if we work together,” said Charles van der Steene, Regional President for Maersk North America.

On Wednesday, August 28, Maersk invites the public to tour the 350-meter-long vessel, which will be sailing from Asia. Visitors will be able to see the Sailors’ living quarters and even stand on the bridge from where the captain controls the vessel. Public tours will require visitors register for a free ticket via an online registration site that will be activated and announced in August.

This is the fifth container vessel in Maersk’s fleet that can sail on green methanol bunker fuel.

 

Photo credit: A.P. Moller – Maersk
Published: 20 June, 2024

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