Japanese shipbuilding major Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has installed its in-house produced DIA-SOx marine SOx scrubbers on 22 ships so far this year.
The company said that its subsidiary Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co. had installed the scrubbers onboard 3 ship types:
- container ships (five 20,000 TEU containership, eight 14,000 TEU containerships and five 10,000 TEU boxships)
- large oil tankers (two 300.000 dwt ships)
- and 2 LPG carriers
The scrubber line-up consists of the R Series and C Series.
As explained, the rectangular tower design of the R Series is the most suitable for container ships and its multi-stream configuration can treat exhaust gas discharged from multiple engines, including the large main engine, with one tower.
One of the advantages of the rectangular tower shape of the R Series is that its installation doesn’t reduce the container loading capacity of a vessel, according to MHI.
The C Series with cylindrical tower design also utilizes the multi-stream configuration and can be installed onboard various other types of ships.
MHI said that the systems were approved by Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK), Lloyd’s Register (LR), American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), and other classification societies after the verification during sea trials.
Mitsubishi attributed its successful installations to remote commissioning conducted via close communication and cooperation with the engineers of its local partners in China and Singapore.
The installation and maintenance of scrubbers have been hampered by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the related travel restrictions imposed by governments across the world. Hence, it has been very difficult for scrubber technicians to come onboard ships to commission scrubbers.
The company is bullish on the market outlook and plans to continue offering its services both as an equipment provider and engineering company offering scrubber installation services.
Even with the lower fuel price spread between LSFO and HSFO post fuel price crash, it is believed that exhaust gas cleaning systems still make a sensible investment, however, owners have to make peace with longer payback times.
That being said, with the latest pressure from port majors across the board on the discharge of scrubber wash water, it is expected that any new investments in scrubbers would have to be in hybrid or closed-loop systems.