31 May 2023
The first biofuel separators in the marine industry
Swedish Alfa Laval has developed separators and separator upgrades that are optimized for biofuel, which are seeing an increase in demand as shipowners seek solutions to decarbonize their operations.
Biofuels are a current and accessible fuel option that can help marine customers decarbonize. Yet while biofuels reduce CO2 footprint, they also pose new operational challenges. Alfa Laval is the first in the market to address them with biofuel-optimized separators and separator upgrades.
Biodiesel is the only readily available drop-in fuel today
As the maritime industry explores options to replace fossil fuels, biodiesel is the only readily available drop-in alternative right now.
The separators are compatible with hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) and fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) blends and can prevent performance issues and expensive engine wear. Biofuels are combustible by diesel engines without modifications, and when produced from biomass, can be carbon neutral. However, they must still maintain effective cleanliness to prevent performance issues and expensive engine wear.
“Biofuels will be the choice for many marine vessels, but customers must be certain that their equipment is prepared for them. With biofuel-ready separators and cost-efficient biofuel upgrades, Alfa Laval can provide that certainty,”Markus Hoffmann, Global Sales Manager, Marine Separation & Heat Transfer Equipment, Alfa Laval
Biofuels are already in widespread use, and ISO is looking to incorporate them into the 2024 revision of ISO 8217. Nevertheless, they can be prepared in various ways and differ widely in their characteristics – both from conventional fuels and from each other. Because of differences in density, moisture absorption, and more, they demand additional care when it comes to fuel storage and treatment.
To ensure optimal biofuel separation, Alfa Laval has modified both internal bowl components and the separator software. This makes setting up for HVO, FAME blends, or conventional fuels a simple parameter change. These upgrades are available for both new separators and for existing ones.
“Optimizing for biofuels is nothing that occurs overnight… Our biofuel-ready separators build on deep fuel insights, extensive research at the Alfa Laval Test & Training Centre and long cooperation with ISO and CIMAC. As biofuels continue to evolve, customers can count on Alfa Laval for efficient engine protection, just as they have with conventional marine fuels.”Markus Hoffmann, Global Sales Manager, Marine Separation & Heat Transfer Equipment, Alfa Laval
Source: Alfa Laval
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