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New technology cuts cruise ship's emissions

Cruise ship's engines use common rail injection technology to reduce smoke emssions.



Image credit:


Updated on 29 Oct 2009 07:33 GMT

STX Europe's shipyard in Turku, Finland has handed over the cruise ship Oasis of the Seas [pictured] to Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. The vessel is powered by engine manufacturer Wärtsilä's most modern, high technology equipment and has been designed to offer reduced emissions.

Oasis of the Seas has a gross tonnage of 225,282 and a passenger capacity of 5400. At 360 metres bow to stern, she is 23 metres longer than the Freedom class vessels.

The ship is equipped with a total of six Wärtsilä 46 engines, three 12-cylinder and three 16-cylinder engines, generating more than 96 MW. The vessel is also equipped with four 5.5 MW Wärtsilä bow thrusters, which are among the largest in the world.

Wärtsilä's engines are equipped with common rail technology, which provides an important and very visible advantage. As the combustion and other process parameters can be adjusted for lower load ranges, smoke emissions can be reduced.

According to Wärtsilä, the engines have undergone continual development to take into account customer preferences and choices.

In the mid-1990s, suppliers of gas turbines made moves to replace diesel engines on cruise ships. Wärtsilä came up with a solution that reduced emissions. This was common rail injection technology, now also fitted to Oasis of the Seas.

"Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has selected Wärtsilä's common-rail-type engines for its other brands in the past. This is however our first common rail delivery to Royal Caribbean International," says Fred Danska, Director, Cruise Business at Wärtsilä.

"Wärtsilä continuously aims to improve the environmental performance of its products and solutions, with the main focus being on improving efficiency and minimizing emissions," the engine manufacturer said in a statement.

"Future cruise ships will be even more environmentally sound, thanks to Wärtsilä's work on SOx scrubbers and LNG (liquefied natural gas)-fuelled engines. Using LNG will eliminate all SOx emissions, reduce NOx emissions by 80 per cent, and CO2 emissions by more than 20 per cent," added Wärtsilä.






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