NYK and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Japan have developed an air-lubrication system for shipping vessels to help cut CO2 emissions.

The system reduces the frictional resistance between a vessel’s bottom and the seawater by means of bubbles generated by supplying air to the bottom. This will in turn cut harmful emissions by up to 10%, according to the MHI.

The companies plan to experiment with the new system using module carriers operated by NYK-Hinode Line, an NYK Group company.

A module carrier has a wide, shallow-draft hull that generates little water pressure and minimises the electric energy required by an air blower to supply air to the vessel’s bottom.