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Positive reaction to dual fuel engine

LNG Industry,

Wärtsilä has reported that the marine industry is already showing significant interest in the company’s new Wärtsilä 2-stroke, low-speed, dual fuel engine technology. Over 130 executives from 89 leading shipping companies attended the Wärtsilä introductory event in Trieste, Italy, a clear indication of the global recognition of the important role of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as marine fuel.

The new Wärtsilä technology allows the dual fuel benefits that are already available to 4-stroke engines to be applied to 2-stroke engines. Attendees of the event described the introduction of the new engine as ‘game-changing’, a ‘gas revolution’ and ‘a paradigm shift’. The Wärtsilä dual fuel technology is now available to the wider merchant shipping market, along with economic and environmental advantages.

Environment benefits

The most significant environmental benefit is that Wärtsilä’s low-pressure dual fuel engine is nitrogen oxide compliant with IMO Tier III regulations without needing to implement secondary measures. There are no sulfur emissions and almost no particulate emissions, and the pilot fuel consumption is very low at just 1% of the fuel used. The technology also allows LNG fuel to be used at all engine loads, so there is no need to change to using diesel at low loads, as is currently the case with other dual fuel technologies.

Economic advantages

Thanks to the new engines being Tier III compliant, there is no need for investment in exhaust cleaning systems. The Wärtsilä gas handling system is additionally simpler and less expensive to produce than other technologies.

Customer reactions

Pontus Berg, general manager of Greenship Gas, commented: “This offers an attractive option for all ships, not just LNG carriers. The market has been waiting for a simpler solution than that provided by high pressure DF technology because high pressure systems demand specialised crew training, whereas Wärtsilä’s low pressure engines seem easier to operate.”

Martin von Sydow, vice president of Ship Design for Wallenius Marine AB, said: “LNG is definitely the most attractive alternative fuel today and it fits well our company policy. Wärtsilä’s low pressure DF technology for 2-stroke engines will be very welcomed by the industry – the number of people at this event shows how important it is. We definitely have something to think about when making future purchasing decisions.”

In his opening speech at the event, Jaakko Eskola, president of Wärtsilä Ship Power, stated: “Dual fuel engine technology is the future; it is a tide that cannot be turned back. Gas is certain to play an increasingly important role in merchant shipping - for both economic and environmental reasons. The introduction of Wärtsilä’s 2-stroke, dual fuel, low-speed engines is a historic landmark in this process.”

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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