Methanol Marine Fuel Gets Research, Funding Boost

Fastwater: feasibility.  File image/Pixabay.

Methanol marine fuel should get a boost from a new consortium of firms which want to “commercialise medium and high-speed methanol-fuelled engines” for shipping.

The companies in the consortium which is called Fastwater include original engine manufacturers, shipyards, naval architects, ship owners/operators, port and maritime authorities, classification societies, fuel producers, and research institutes. 

“Fastwaer will put more methanol-fuelled vessels on the water and showcase retrofit technologies that will serve as lighthouse projects supporting wider commercial introduction,” said project manager Professor Sebastian Verhelst of Lund and Gent Universities.

Three ships — a harbour tug, a pilot boat, and a coast guard vessel — are at the centre of the project which aims to show the feasibility of using methanol bunker fuel.

In addition, a conversion concept for a river cruise ship using methanol-driven propulsion will be developed as well as a universal, scalable retrofit kit for converting diesel fuelled ships to methanol use.

Fastwater has secured funding from the European Commission.

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