On a cost per unit basis, shipping remains the most energy efficient means of transportation. However, because most ship owners are switching to marine gas oil inside designated Emission Control Areas as of Jan. 1, 2015, to comply with the new EU Sulfur Directive, the cost of fuel could rise by up to 50 percent.
Finland-based Nanol Technologies has developed a lubricant additive that reduces fossil fuel usage by 3 to 5 percent.
The additive contains copper “particles,” which are dispersed in micelles and are completely soluble in oil. The micelles then transport the active copper “particles” to the metal surface. Nanol protects metal surfaces by creating a thin protective layer of copper. The protective layer reduces friction and energy losses, which in turn reduces wear, extends the lifetime of components and the lubricants, and reduces fossil fuel usage as well as engine emissions.
When Nanol’s lubricant additive was tested in Ro-Ro and Dry Cargo vessels for six- and 12-month trial periods, the vessels achieved a 5 percent reduction in fuel consumption in both instances.
However the savings achieved through engine lubrication choice is just one of the many energy management choices that can effect fuel efficiency. Maritime energy management technology provider Eniram said the maritime industry should take a holistic approach to efficiency.
The Eniram platform and sensors allow cruise ship and cargo vessel owners and operators to track parameters such as speed, engine performance, draft, fouling and weather conditions. Ship owners and operators can use the data to make adjustments to a vessel’s trim, speed and RPM in real time to achieve optimum efficiency, as well as significant savings on fuel consumption and operating costs.
Eniram’s modeling shows that accurate measurement and ongoing performance analysis have the potential to improve overall efficiency by 10 percent.