Shipowners explore novel carbon capture concept
As the shipping industry looks for carbon free solutions to achieve the IMO 2050 target of a 50% CO2 emissions reduction compared to the 2008 level, a group of world leading shipping companies including NYK, Sovcomflot, Knutsen OAS and Ardmore, ship builders, including DSME and the mining company Vale, have teamed up with Denmark based Maritime Development Center to develop an on-board carbon capture and storage solution in a project named decarbonICE.
DecarbonICE is based on two new main ideas for the capture and storage part, respectively. The CO2 and other GHG’s in the ship exhaust are captured on board in a cryogenic process and turned into dry ice. Proven offshore technology is then applied during normal ship operations to transport the dry ice into the seafloor sediments. Here the CO2 will be safely and permanently stored as liquid CO2 and CO2 hydrate.
The decarbonICE concept is intended for ship newbuildings, but also for retrofitting on existing ships, thereby providing the opportunity to accelerate the transition towards the IMO target. In combination with future carbon neutral fuels like biofuels and electro fuels, the decarbonICE technology can create carbon negative shipping and thus contribute to atmospheric carbon reduction at a significantly lower cost than shore-based carbon capture.
The project started 1 October 2019 and will run through 2020. The aim is to prepare a feasibility study and to initiate the IMO approval process for the technology.
“While we support a final goal of availability of zero carbon or carbon neutral fuels, we believe that a bridging carbon free solution is needed, which can utilize existing assets in terms of ships, propulsion systems and fuels. The decarbonICE project is intended to offer exactly that, and at a predicted low energy penalty well below 10%,” said the Chairman of the decarbonICE project, former DNVGL President and CEO Henrik O. Madsen.
“As a leading and responsible shipping company, we have been studying many proposals for future propulsion systems and fuels to achieve the IMO 2050 target. We are very excited about the opportunity created through the decarbonICE technology, and we strongly support this as one of the possible ways to achieve the target,” said Taizo Yoshida, Corporate Officer, General Manager of NYK’s Technical Group.
“The maritime industry seems to be overlooking that on-board carbon capture with subsequent storage at appropriate sites may also qualify as a carbon free solution. At DSME we are following several Korean research groups studying the behavior of CO2 injected into seabed sediments. The success of the decarbonICE project will also depend on how the required power can be minimized for the cryogenic cooling process,” said Odin Kwon, CTO of DSME.
“Vale wants to contribute to reduce emissions of its customers and suppliers, and the shipping industry is included in this strategy. DecarbonICE is one of the technologies that has been studied by Vale in order to achieve this goal,” said Vagner Loyola, Ferrous Value Chain Director.