Argonne Labs Offers Fuel Saving Chart To Ship Operators

Attendees at a recent maritime conference have identified the 10 most effective ways that ship operators can save fuel.

Most of the approaches involve modification, conversion or installation of thoroughly tested equipment. But the element having the greatest potential for shipboard energy-conservation is developing a strong motivation to save fuel among ship officers and engineers.

These conclusions were reached at the International Maritime Industry Energy Conservation Workshop, conducted in New York recently by the Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory, where some 40 alternatives for saving shipping energy were discussed.

The results of the workshop will be incorporated in a chart developed by Argonne that summarizes information available on alternatives for saving fuel aboard ship. The chart is available to U.S. and foreign-flag operators engaged in U.S. foreign trade.

Nine of the 40 engineering and operational alternatives were identified as having major potential for saving energy. These alternatives and their individual fuel-saving potentials are: Slower ship speeds, as allowed by their effects on other operating costs and service requirements, can save as much as 30 percent of the fuel normally used.

Improved hull maintenance, including the use of self-washing coatings, can cut fuel costs 7 percent.

Finer engine tuning, including combustion and instrument improvements, can save 10 percent.

Conversion from steam to diesel engines can save as much as 25 percent.

Fueling with coal or coal slurries reduces petroleum consumption and can provide large fuel-cost savings.

Improvements in ship trim can save up to 25 percent.

Improvements in the steam cycle or diesel engine can save up to 7 percent.

Improvements in the steering efficiency can also save fuel, but the precise amount depends on the ship and its route.

It was noted at the workshop that fuelsavings percentages are not directly additive because successive improvements may functionally overlap and operate on a diminishing base of ship fuel consumption. Many of these alternatives include several sub-alternatives with varying energy-conservation potentials.

Attending the workshop were representatives of Farrell Lines, Finland Steamship Co., Matson Lines, Moore McCormack Lines, Prudential Lines, Mobil Shipping Transportation Co., and Utah Transport.

Representatives from the University of Michigan, the State University of New York Maritime College, the U.S. Maritime Administration, and three maritime consulting firms, also were present.

Copies of the Argonne summary chart are available from Ken Bertram, Center for Transportation Research, Building 12, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, 111.


Other stories from September 1981 issue


Maritime Reporter

First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.