Technology group Wärtsilä has introduced the new version of its Wärtsilä 31DF engine, which can reduce methane emissions by 41% more than the standard Wärtsilä 31DF engine.
ccording to Wärtsilä , the new version, which is applied on one of the four engines on board Wasaline’s Aurora Botnia ferry, has already helped the Finnish-Swedish ferry operator further reduce the Aurora Botnia’s methane emissions by 10%.
As part of the EU co-funded Green Ray and SeaTech projects, Wärtsilä piloted the concept onboard the Aurora Botnia with exceptional results verified through an independent study conducted in December 2022 by VTT, the Technical Research Centre of Finland. Encouraged by the positive results, Wärtsilä has now launched the new ultra-low emissions version of the Wärtsilä 31DF engine to the commercial market.
Equipment that uses natural gas as a fuel is generally designed to have at least 98% combustion efficiency – which means at least 98% of the gas to be burned. This also means that the other 2% of methane is released as unburned gas. This is known as methane slip.
In simpler terms, methane slip is the unburned fuel that is not fully combusted in ships’ engines. Although methane slip accounts for a generally a small percentage of the fuel used, in operations that use a significant amount of energy, methane slip can be a major source of emissions.
We are very committed to decarbonisation, and we have worked closely with Wärtsilä to make sustainable shipping a reality. It is a goal-oriented partnership that benefits both companies, as well as the industry as a whole.
… commented Peter Ståhlberg, Managing Director of Wasaline.
Although methane slip from engines is a relatively small amount, from a percentage standpoint, it is significantly more potent than CO2 – up to 28 times greater.
Across the shipping industry, cutting methane emissions is one of the most effective ways to decrease overall GHG emissions from engines over the next 10 years, complementing other efforts to reduce CO2 emissions.
Our work around reducing methane slip and GHG emissions is part of Wärtsilä’s effort to continuously improve efficiency and reduce emissions of our products, and this new innovation is one more very important step along the road to decarbonisation
… said Stefan Nysjö, Vice President of Power Supply, Wärtsilä Marine Power.