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ExxonMobil to double Singapore MFM bunkering fleet

Written by Nick Blenkey
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ExxonMobil's Marina Albright says MFM delivers significant value to vessel operators

APRIL 24, 2004 — From January 1, 2017, it will be mandatory for bunker suppliers in the Port of Singapore to use the Mass Flow Metering (MFM) system for bunker delivery of Marine Fuel Oil (MFO). All existing bunker tankers operating in port must be fitted with an approved MFM system by December 31, 2016. All new bunker tankers applying for Harbour Craft (Bunker Tanker) license after December 31, 2014 will be required to be fitted with a Maritime & Port Authority (MPA) approved MFM system for MFO delivery.

Lui Tuck Yew, Singapore’s Minister for Transport says that the use of the MFM system will not only enhance transparency in the bunkering process, but also improve operational efficiency and increase the productivity of the entire industry

One company that is already using MFM for Singapore bunker deliveries is ExxonMobil Marine Fuels & Lubricants. It was the first marine supplier to deliver fuel via a MPA-approved mass flow metering system in June 2012 and has announced that it will double its fleet of chartered bunker tankers in Singapore that feature MPA approved mass flow metering systems from three to six. It says the expansion is a result of significant interest from marine operators who bunker in Singapore and who are looking for enhanced transparency in measurement during fueling.

ExxonMobil says the system offers major benefits for vessel operators, with savings of up to an estimated three hours and US$7,000 per delivery compared with tank gauging, as well as increased transparency during the bunkering process.

In June 2012, ExxonMobil was the first supplier to deliver marine fuel using a mass flow metering system approved by a port authority – the MPA – for bunker fuel deliveries. ExxonMobil chartered two additional bunker tankers fitted with approved mass flow metering systems in 2013.

“The MPA’s recent announcement that it will mandate mass flow metering systems supports ExxonMobil’s view that this technology delivers significant value to vessel operators. This is why we have been providing our customers with the benefits of the mass flow metering system in Singapore for almost two years,” said Molina Albright, General Manager, Marine Fuels, Asia Pacific at ExxonMobil Marine Fuels & Lubricants.

“Our expanded mass flow metering capability will enable us to offer more marine operators the possibility of achieving the valuable time and cost savings provided by this advanced technology.”

ExxonMobil’s on-board mass flow metering system has been developed in close collaboration with the MPA and the Standards, Productivity and Innovation Board (SPRING) Singapore.

The Port of Singapore is the first in the world to mandate the use of mass flow metering (MFM) system for bunkering.

ExxonMobil says benefits of its mass flow metering technology include:

Accuracy and efficiency – The mass flow metering system introduces efficiency into the entire bunkering process by measuring fuel mass directly and reducing the uncertainties associated with density, temperature and other variables such as varying tank geometry.

Potential valuable cost savings – Changes in fuel temperature and density during the refuelling process can lead to additional costs for vessel operators. An estimated US$7,000 saving could be achieved by measuring these variables in real time with the mass flow metering system. The system could also potentially bring additional significant savings by avoiding human calculation errors that can occur using traditional tank dipping.

Potential significant time savings – The system offers the potential to save an estimated time of up to three hours per delivery. This could offer potential significant financial and resource savings for vessels that bunker in Singapore.

System integrity – With refueling integrity requiring more than a secure meter alone, the system has both calibrated and certified meter tamper-evident seals fitted by the Weights and Measures Office of Singapore. The system also has an independent sealing of the system’s associated pipelines, valves, gauges and barge equipment.

Increased traceability and transparency – Measurement data is logged throughout the entire delivery process, illustrating the fuel mass transferred at any point in time, offering a transparent and accurate measure of fuel transferred into the tank.

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