Sweden-based ferry company Stena Line is to convert its Stena Germanica vessel to methanol propulsion, making Stena the first operator to run a large 1,500-passenger ferry on methanol.
For the conversion project, Stena Line will collaborate with Wärtsilä, the Port of Gothenburg, the Port of Kiel and Methanex Corporation, the world’s largest methanol producer and supplier.
The vessel is expected to re-start operations in early 2015.
The €22m fuel conversion will take place at Remontova Shipyard in Poland from January 2015. The EU will provide financial support for the process as part of its Motorways of the Seas initiative.
Stena Line CEO Carl-Johan Hagman said: "Our focus has always been on innovation for the benefit of both customers and society at large and this is a prime example when this goes hand in hand.
"We are constantly evaluating different fuels for the future and to be first in the world with a methanol conversion is a big step towards sustainable transportation."
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In collaboration with Stena Teknik, Wärtsilä has developed the new engine conversion kit and ship application for the process. The engine will be able to use methanol as the main fuel grade and marine gas oil (MGO) as a back-up.
From early 2015 onward, vessels in the SECA area will be required to use fuel with a very low sulphur content of 0.1%.
Compared to existing fuels, the use of methanol will help reduce the emissions of sulphur (99%), nitrogen (60%), particles (95%) and carbon dioxide (25%).
Image: Stena Line is to be the world’s first operator to run a large ferry on methanol. Photo: courtesy of Cision.