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New MHI Ship Design Cuts Emissions 35%

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has designed a new large-sized, fuel-efficient container vessel that reduces carbon-dioxide emissions by 35 percent compared with conventional container carriers, reports IBN.

MHI attributes the reduction to the Mitsubishi Air Lubrication System (MALS), which reduces frictional resistance between the vessel hull and seawater using air bubbles at the vessel bottom, and an advanced ship hull design and propulsion system, including an electronically controlled diesel engine and waste heat recovery system.

The MALS-14000CS also is designed with a SOx scrubber to remove sulfur oxide (SOx) from flue gas and a ballast water treatment system.

The vessel, dubbed MALS-14000CS, will be able to carry 14,000 6-meter equivalent unit containers and travel through the Panama Canal after the waterway’s expansion is completed in 2014, reports Japan Times.

Takashi Unseki, acting general manager of the company’s ship and ocean engineering department, told IBN that with a 1 percent CO2 emission cut, the vessel will be capable of cutting fuel costs by up to $368,250 (30 million yen) annually.

MHI says it has installed the MALS on the “YAMATAI,” a module carrier operated by the NYK-Hinode Line, and is verifying its CO2 reduction efficiency, expecting about a 10 percent cut.

Other shipping companies like Maersk are moving ahead with plans to reduce their shipping speed as a way to reduce emissions.

These moves come at a time when the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is working to develop a plan to cut CO2 emissions. At the environment protection committee meeting in October, the IMO failed to agree on proposals to cut carbon emissions.

IMO plans to hold further talks in March 2011 to discuss a market-based mechanism for lowering emissions.

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