Alfa Laval has partnered with engine designer WinGD to develop an exhaust gas cooling system, which, the companies say, enables ‘up to 50% methane slip reduction’
Alfa Laval said trials at WinGD’s engine test facility showed a methane slip reduction of up to 50% which the company called "a major environmental gain".
In addition to reducing methane slip, Alfa Laval said the PureCool system ’significantly boosts’ fuel and energy efficiency. The company said engine buyers will see operational benefits as improved combustion will see fuel consumption in gas mode reduce by 3%.
The PureCool system is the main component in WinGD’s Intelligent Control by Exhaust gas Recycling (iCER) technology, an option for the X-DF2.0 engines, WinGD’s second-generation dual-fuel engine technology.
As a growing number of vessels turn to LNG as a fuel, many are concerned about the potential impact and ultimate regulation of ’methane slip’, or methane escaping, from LNG-burning engines.
The iCER option is a standalone installation adjacent to the engine. Mr Jung said "During operation in gas mode, it improves combustion by cooling and recirculating about 50% of the exhaust gas through a low-pressure path with full turbocharger capacity. This minimises methane slip, and the PureCool system provides the vital cooling function that makes it possible."
LNG produces less CO2 than other fossil fuels when burned, but a small percentage of methane can slip through the engine without being combusted. Methane is even more potent than CO2 in terms of its impact on climate change, and may come into focus in meeting IMO’s climate goals.
Alfa Laval’s business development manager David Jung said that, as awareness of methane slip and its climate change influence grows "new regulations are not unthinkable, and any improvement from today’s environmental benchmark is important".
As iCER moves into the commercial phase and prepares for a first pilot installation, PureCool will enter Alfa Laval’s compliance portfolio becoming the first technology related to non-traditional fuel.