ExxonMobil introduces EMF.5 range of low-sulphur fuels

Supplier highlights proprietary methods for modifying fuel composition to improve quality.



Luca Volta, marine fuels venture manager at ExxonMobil. Image credit: ExxonMobil


Updated on 04 Jul 2019 08:42 GMT

ExxonMobil has announced the introduction of its EMF.5 branded range of engineered marine fuels developed ahead of the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) global 0.50 percent sulphur cap.

As previously reported, the newly named fuels are all residual grades - ranging from RMD 80 to RMG 380, whilst meeting specification levels set out in ISO 8217:2017 - and compatible with each other, provided that bunkering, storage and handling best practice guidance is followed.

The supplier stresses that all the fuels in the range have been specifically engineered to help vessel operators comply with the 2020 regulations without compromising on quality.

ExxonMobil explained: "In addition to meeting the ISO 8217-2017 specification, EMF.5 fuels have also passed ExxonMobil's rigorous fit-for-use assessments, allowing customers to bunker the high quality, compliant options they need ahead of the IMO 2020 deadline.

"This combination of characteristics will help ensure that vessel operators can continue to operate their main engines, auxiliary engines and boilers safely and efficiently when they switch to 0.50 percent sulphur fuels, as the negative, operational and financial consequences of a major product quality problem could be very significant."

Specifications

All ExxonMobil's 0.50 percent sulphur fuels developed to date are residual. The specifications are said to range from RMD 80 to RMG 380, with a density of between 900 and 970 at 15 degrees Celsius.

In terms of catalytic fine (cat fine) content, the bunker supplier notes that the levels meet those set out in the latest ISO 8217:2017 standard.

In ISO 8217:2017, the maximum permissible level of cat fines, measured as aluminium + silicon (al+si), is 60 mg/kg for RMG 180 and RMG 380, whilst for RMD 80 and RME 180 it is 40 and 50 mg/kg, respectively.

"Compliance should not come at the expense of fuel quality, and our EMF.5 range delivers assurances on both to the marine industry," said Luca Volta, marine fuels venture manager at ExxonMobil. "By including our 0.50 percent sulphur fuels in our branded marine offer, we are delivering the additional security that vessel operators want, and need, every time they bunker."

"The increasing variety of fuels entering the market raises the potential of quality and compatibility challenges," said Mike Noorman, head of fuels technology at ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company. "We have developed proprietary methods for modifying fuel composition to improve quality characteristics, such as combustion, stability, waxing and compatibility. Therefore, purchasing ExxonMobil's EMF.5 fuels can help allay these concerns at a time of great change for the industry."

Mobilgard 540

Back in October, ExxonMobil also announced that it had developed a newly formulated 40BN cylinder oil, Mobilgard 540, which is specifically designed to work with low-sulphur fuels and for vessels operating in 0.1 percent Emission Control Areas (ECAs).

The new lubricant, which replaces Mobilgard 525, is to be made available across the company's global port network and via its distribution network.