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MAN methanol-ready four-stroke 32/44CR wins RINA approval

Classification society RINA has granted an Approval in Principle (AiP) certificate to MAN Energy Solutions for its methanol-ready MAN L/V 32/44CR engine. The AiP covers an upgrade concept for the four-stroke engine for conversion to dual-fuel running on methanol to provide greater flexibility to shipowners.


This AiP is based on our recently published Methyl Alcohol Fuelled Ready notation. Methanol is a fuel with a lot of potential as clean, carbon-neutral fuel and the industry is already showing concrete appreciation of it. The successful cooperation with MAN is a further step towards the availability of future-proof solutions for shipowners.

—Patrizio Di Francesco, EMEA Special Projects Manager, RINA

This approval by RINA is significant as we move towards net zero. A major advantage of our four-stroke portfolio is its inherent retrofit potential, which enables us to provide shipowners with cost-effective solutions and flexibility regarding future fuels. In this latter respect, there is no doubt but that interest in methanol is growing and that it will have a prominent role to play within shipping.

—Elvis Ettenhofer, Head of New Marine Solutions, MAN Energy Solutions

Methanol has several physical advantages as a fuel, including a liquid state at ambient temperatures and its accordingly easy handling aboard vessels, compared to gaseous fuels. Under combustion, methanol also emits fewer NOx emissions and no SOx nor soot emissions.

In preparation for the fuels that will power a decarbonized future, MAN Energy Solutions is also developing solutions for methanol, which can become carbon-neutral if synthesized with green hydrogen.

Finally, methanol is also less hazardous to marine life compared with conventional marine fuels. The AiP certificate permits the use of outer ship hulls as bunker tanks, thereby increasing fuel-storage capacity on-board.



I'm reasonably hopeful that we can do methanol in a more or less closed cycle.
Not ideal, but way better than what we have, and it unwise to allow the perfect to become the enemy of the good.


Storing liquid CO2 and recirculating it to the methanol production site, you think?



Yeah, as here:

Note that they are intending to use fuel cells, which they reckon is more efficient that using a conventional engine.

Dunno how practical this would be for terrestrial vehicles either, but basically one CO2 molecule is the same as any other, so air capture to offset might work instead.


Note that from the discussion I linked several respected posters are very reasonably sceptical of air capture of CO2

We don't really need to solve that right now though, as there are scads of concentrated CO2 emissions which could be used to produce methanol, while we figure something better out, hence my comment about 'more or less closed cycle' - it would certainly start off as less! ;-)


Direct Air Capture of CO2 does not look like it can be economic anytime soon. However, Carbon Capture from concentrated sources may work.
The Maritime Industry is looking at a “Circular Methanol Cycle” that could work.
Here is a report from the Fonden Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center
for Zero Carbon Shipping
,” The Role of Onboard Carbon Capture in Maritime Decarbonization”,
Note in this article, Figure 1: from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) that shows CO2 Liquefaction that @Peter_XX comments on.
From MHI an article on, “The Potential of CCUS”,
Wärtsilä is also looking into Methanol and CCUS.
Here is another reference, this one about Wärtsilä:
“Wärtsilä to Deliver CCS-ready Scrubbers for 8,200 TEU Containerships”


Anyone got any insights on whether the CO2 from methanol could be contained in heavy trucking in the same way as for ships?

That sounds a bit Heath-Robinson, Rube Goldberg in America ;-) but the alternatives aren't great.

Batteries impose a phenomenal local draw on the grid, if they need charging away from base quickly so as not to have downtime, and that ain't great for battery longevity,

Liquid hydrogen is tricky to handle, and involves substantial energy losses.


Element 1 and Aramco are actually working on CO2 Capture and Methanol Trucking.
Element 1 Presentation - “Methanol to H2 Supply Systems (MHSS) - Fuel Cell Mobility”,
On page 21, an Onboard Methanol to H2 Supply System (MHSS) is depicted for a HD Truck.
Since 2010, Aramco has been doing research on mobile carbon capture.
In December, 2021 Aramco Americas and Element 1 began a carbon capture and hydrogen project.


Thanks for the informative links, Gryf.
Unfortunately for me they present more problems than solutions!

In the first link, they compare the volumes needed to compressed hydrogen, not the liquid hydrogen which just about everyone except Toyota, who want to use gasesous, and the VW group, who tell us that they can't afford to develop hydrogen, so are hoping batteries will cover it, and if not, intend to buy in fuel cell technology

That is because with liquid hydrogen you can do pretty much the same as in a diesel truck, with volume and weight constraints relaxed enough so that you have no load penalty, at least in Europe which from memory allows slightly relaxed weight constraints for ZEVs,

Unfortunately I can't locate my link to the full analysis anymore, which was from Daimler or Daimler/Volvo.

I don't much fancy the data here, as the capture of the CO2 seems to take up some substantial space ( and weight?) and in addition, from the second link, only around 50% of the CO2 is captured!

That does not work for me, and something else has to be figured, CO2 from the air or whatever.


Longer term, wireless inductive charging of long distance trucks may be the way to go.

Unfortunately, the technology is not yet widespread and ready to go, and it may be around 2030 before even in cars charging wirelessly is widespread, so increasing the knowledge base and readiness of production etc.

Of course, catenaries are possible right now, but suffer from perhaps some of the same rigidities as rail.


Methanol and Methanol water blends hold more hydrogen per liter than liquid H2. Yes, 50% Carbon Capture is definitely not that great. Either eMethanol or bioMethanol really would be needed.
Carbon Capture can work on Ships, possibly Rail. However, HD trucks would be marginal.

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