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DNV and PSE develop concept for on-ship chemical CO2 capture; capable of reducing ship CO2 emissions by up to 65%

13 February 2013

Det Norske Veritas (DNV), a leading classification society, and Process Systems Enterprise Ltd. (PSE), a global provider of advanced process modeling technology, have developed a concept design for shipboard chemical CO2 capture. The results from the Maritime CCS (carbon capture and storage) research and development project show that the concept is technically feasible and capable of reducing ship CO2 emissions by up to 65%. For a VLCC tanker, this could correspond to capturing more than 70,000 tonnes of CO2 per year, transforming them from emissions to a tradable product.

The system consists of a chemical absorption plant that separates CO2 from flue gases; a liquefaction unit where the captured CO2 is compressed and condensed using a refrigerant; and two storage tanks where the liquid CO2 product is temporarily stored until discharge into transmission and storage infrastructures at the next suitable port.

In response to more stringent environmental regulations and complex market conditions, we see an increased demand for innovative solutions towards higher efficiency and greener operations. Our R&D activities, such as the carbon capture initiative which is completely new in the field of maritime transportation, pave the future towards next-generation solutions for achieving more energy-efficient, environmentally friendly and sustainable maritime transportation.

—Dr. Nikolaos Kakalis, Head of DNV Research & Innovation Greece

This has been a challenging design problem with tight constraints. Applying a model-based engineering approach has been key to exploring the process decision space rapidly and effectively, and developing technically feasible and economically viable solutions.

—Prof. Costas Pantelides, Managing Director of PSE

Maritime CO2 emissions are estimated at more than 1000 million tonnes per year, or 3% of total emissions, and are expected to reach 2000 to 3000m tonnes by 2050. The UK government has included maritime emissions in the reduction targets set by the Climate Change Bill, and the International Maritime Organisation is expected to drive a reduction in emissions from international shipping. Because ship emissions are concentrated—unlike other forms of transport—the potential to capture CO2 at source has been the key focus of the project.

The Maritime CCS project was jointly financed by the two partners, the UK’s Technology Strategy Board and the Research Council of Norway under the EUROSTARS initiative. The project took into account the unique challenges posed by the maritime environment—constant movement, limited space and access to utilities, stringent safety requirements and the need for energy efficiency.

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