Alfa Laval upgrades and future proofs PureSOx

Malcolm Latarche

Malcolm Latarche · 05 June 2019


A new modular version of its PureSOx scrubber has been launched in response to restrictions on open-loop scrubbers announced by some reginal authorities.

Though few in number and limited in scope, local bans on open-loop scrubbing have intensified the interest in hybrid scrubber solutions with closed-loop functionality. While marine customers are focused on complying with today’s needs at minimal cost, there is peace of mind in the ability to upgrade if regulations should become more stringent. Both considerations are integral to the new PureSOx water cleaning system (WCS).

Erik Haveman, Sales Director, Exhaust Gas Cleaning

As before, the foundation of the PureSOx WCS is high-speed centrifugal separation. This is a core technology in which Alfa Laval has well over a century of experience, as well as the most effective method of cleaning water at sea. In the new modular system, the separator module can be combined with a flocculator or a membrane module for additional capacity, either directly or through a later upgrade.

“The new PureSOx WCS is a modular, customer-adapted solution that makes closed-loop operation with PureSOx even more cost-efficient,” said Erik Haveman, Sales Director, Exhaust Gas Cleaning. “Simply put, it offers vessels a future-proof system with options to expand capacity and save on operating costs. The modular additions allow the best and most cost-effective fit for the customer’s needs, building on the proven effectiveness of the centrifugal separator. Vessels with high engine power, such as mega-container vessels and cruise ships, will benefit especially from the addition of membranes, which increase the volume of water that can be cleaned effectively.”

Further benefits are achieved through two features that are new to the PureSOx WCS. One is the ability to use either sodium hydroxide or non-hazardous magnesium hydroxide as the alkaline additive, based on which is desired or most affordable at the time. The other is the option of using seawater rather than fresh water for replenishing the water system, which yields lower energy costs.

“Unless it’s bunkered, fresh water has to be produced on board, which means using it for closed-loop scrubbing adds to the energy equation,” said Haveman. “Seawater replenishment makes economical use of water that’s readily available to the vessel.”

For customers who hesitate to commit to a hybrid today, but who still wish to future-proof their scrubber investment, Alfa Laval provides PureSOx systems as hybrid-ready. This option, which is Alfa Laval’s standard for open-loop deliveries, includes the connections, hardware accommodations and software flexibility needed for a later hybrid upgrade. The upgrade can be done at a shipyard quay, or in some cases while the vessel is sailing.

“PureSOx customers can be confident of complying with stricter regulations if they appear,” said Haveman. “Whether they choose a fully equipped hybrid system now or opt for a hybrid-ready system that can be upgraded later, they can count on the most effective water cleaning technology available. Alfa Laval has ten years of closed-loop operating experience to prove it.”

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