Wärtsilä has introduced a new Upgrade Kit for Slow Steaming for low-speed engines to enable shipowners and operators to make major savings in fuel costs while slow steaming their ships. The Upgrade Kit allows Wärtsilä low-speed marine engines to be operated continuously at any power in the range of 20% to 100%. This means that with the Upgrade Kit ships can sail continuously at sea speeds down to some 60% full speed.
High bunker prices have put fuel efficiency high on the agenda of charterers, shipowners and ship operators. There is thus considerable interest in slow steaming, that is operating ships for long periods at reduced sea speeds. Yet without modification with this Upgrade Kit, there is increased risk of engine fouling and excessive component temperatures when operating continuously below 50% engine load.
The Upgrade Kit overcomes such problems. The modified engine is not permanently derated but can operate at any time up to its full installed power. The concept of the Upgrade Kit is to cut out a turbocharger when the engine is to be operated at low load. This increases the scavenge air delivery at low load for better combustion and more optimum temperatures of engine components. This means more efficient fuel consumption, which helps to cut ship owners’ fuel costs and to reduce emissions.
The first Upgrade Kits were ordered in November 2008 by the German owner Koepping Shipping Company for two container vessels, each with a Wärtsilä low-speed engine. The two ships, “Aglaia” and “Lantau Arrow”, are fast feeder container vessels.
Joerg Koepping, Managing Director of Koepping Shipping, said “The Slow-Steaming Upgrade Kits will give these ships considerable flexibility to adapt to the present difficult market conditions, allowing great cost savings while slow steaming but retaining the capability for full speed whenever necessary.”
The Upgrade Kit is available for all RTA and RT-flex engines with multiple turbochargers. The Upgrade Kit is delivered by Wärtsilä on a turn-key basis and includes engine performance analysis, cabling and installation, all materials and their transport, service engineers to undertake the whole installation and commissioning, and emission measurement and certification. The installation and commissioning of the Upgrade Kit can be completed during normal commercial operation of the ship and during normal port calls.
Ms Tuula Franck
Tel: +358 400 267555
Wärtsilä Corporation in brief
Wärtsilä enhances the business of its customers by providing them with complete lifecycle power solutions. When creating better and environmentally compatible technologies, Wärtsilä focuses on the marine and energy markets with products and solutions as well as services. Through innovative products and services, Wärtsilä sets out to be the most valued business partner of all its customers. This is achieved by the dedication of over 18,000 professionals manning 160 locations in 70 countries around the world. Wärtsilä is listed on the Nordic Exchange in Helsinki, Finland. www.wartsila.com