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TCM to advise Wärtsilä on onboard carbon capture

Wärtsilä Marine Systems, part of Finland-headed marine and energy engineering major Wärtsilä Oyj, has entered into an agreement with Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM) for advisory services in connection with the establishment of a pilot plant at Moss in Norway for capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) onboard ships.

Wärtsilä Exhaust Treatment highlights the potential for exhaust gas abatement systems to directly tackle maritime carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the near future, as technology advances and enables manufacturers to design and upgrade scrubbers to capture carbon at the point of exhaust.

Pilot in Norway

Wärtsilä has conducted extensive research and development to explore how carbon capture and storage (CCS) can be developed and scaled in maritime. Initial findings show that CCS on ships is technically viable for the sector to pursue.

To further accelerate development, Wärtsilä is installing a 1 MW pilot plant at its test facility in Moss, Norway. This pilot plant will allow Wärtsilä to test its CCS technologies in a range of scenarios and conditions.

Among other things, TCM will contribute expertise on emissions and Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Wärtsilä has conducted extensive research and development which shows that carbon capture and storage (CCS) in the maritime sector technically is possible. We look forward to helping this technology to be used in the future, said Ernst Petter Axelsen, CEO at TCM.

Advisory services are a priority area

Since its inception in 2012, TCM has conducted 13 tests of various carbon capture technologies for private companies and research-based institutions, and three more such campaigns are planned this year.

In addition, we have been an advisor for several projects internationally for the deployment and implementation of CO2 capture in full scale. Many will use the knowledge and experience we have gained to reduce the risk of errors in the planning and implementation of such projects. As the capture and storage industry now takes new steps in many countries, advisory services are also becoming an increasingly important business area for TCM, emphasized Ernst Petter Axelsen.

Can provide emission reductions relatively quickly

Carbon capture and storage, enabled by scrubbers, must take a central role within the suite of solutions helping to drive decarbonization in shipping, including alternative fuels and efficiency technologies.

As there is not only one single solution on shipping’s environmental impact the sector must innovate broadly across multiple areas.

Building on the success of existing and well-proven technologies, such as scrubbers, will be vital to succeeding on the industry’s decarbonization goals. Exhaust gas abatement technologies have reached a point of maturity where it is only right that we explore their wider applications beyond sulphur compliance, said Sigurd Jenssen, Director, Exhaust Treatment at Wärtsilä.

Through the collaboration with TCM, Wärtsilä receives expert assistance for modeling processes related to CO2 capture and storage, and for safeguarding the health, environmental, and safety aspects in the capture process.

TCM’s support gives Wärtsilä access to a deep well of insight and expertise on carbon capture technologies, alongside world-leading facilities that will enable us to bring a maritime CCS solution to market. This agreement gives us a huge advantage in solving the challenge of reducing emissions on ships and supporting the industry’s wider decarbonisation pathway, said Jan Gannefors, Wärtsilä’s General Manager Technical R&D.

Given the scale of the decarbonization challenge ahead, Wärtsilä Exhaust Treatment believes there is no better place to focus the efforts than on the biggest emission of them all – carbon – and think about the ways that it can use what it has already learned from sulphur, both as an organization and as an industry.

“CCS onboard vessels is clearly a substantial undertaking but one that we believe we are well placed to pioneer. Carbon capture is exciting because it can provide significant reductions in a relatively short timeframe. This is important in the context of the industry’s overall decarbonization transition, as it will enable us to safeguard existing assets as we move to a cleaner mode of operating,” concluded Sigurd Jenssen (photo courtesy Wärtsilä).

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