Wartsila joins LNG-fueled bulker project

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Wärtsilä 31 engine

MAY 11, 2015 — Wärtsilä is joining Project Forward. Led by Athens-based Arista Shipping, the project aims to develop a design for a commercially feasible LNG fueled dry bulk carrier design that can meet IMO’s Energy Efficiency Design Index 2025 standards and all relevant emission reduction regulations. Other project members are classification society ABS,  ship designer Deltamarin and LNG containment specialist GTT.

Wärtsilä  says its 31DF dual-fuel engine is likely to form the basis of the concept’s propulsion system. Introduced in June 2015, the Wärtsilä 31 has been recognized by Guinness World Records as the world’s most efficient four-stroke diesel engine. The DF version allows the use of either LNG or conventional marine fuel oils.

While two-stroke engines are the conventional choice for vessels of this type, Wärtsilä says that “the supreme efficiency of the Wärtsilä 31 engine makes it a competitive and viable alternative option.”

“Wärtsilä has been selected to participate in this important project because of our depth of experience in LNG propulsion solutions, our strong position in  four-stroke engine technology, and in particular because of the state-of-the-art Wärtsilä 31 engine,” says Aaron Bresnahan, Vice President, Sales, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions. “This engine has not only taken efficiency to a new benchmark level, but in gas-mode is IMO Tier III compliant without the need for any exhaust cleaning systems. We are proud to be a part of this future-looking project, which could eventually be applied equally well to other types and sizes of merchant vessel

“Project Forward aims to become a milestone for the shipping industry and in particular for owners and operators of cargo ships,” says Arista Shipping Principal, Alexander P. Panagopulos. “Owners must decide within the next 5-10 years whether gas as fuel is a practical means of compliance with lower emissions standards and this project will enable all of us to understand its feasibility. We welcome Wärtsilä’s involvement, as it is a company with great experience in this field.”

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