Month-Long Ocean Trip Is Test Bed For Biofuels

Operating companies of A.P. Moller/Maersk Group and the U.S. Navy are using a 6,500 nautical-mile voyage from Germany to India to research the use of biofuels in commercial ocean liners.

The 300-meter-long container ship Maersk Kalma is traveling from Bremerhaven, Germany, to Pipavav, India, and parts of that voyage will be powered by algae-based biofuel. A total of 30 tons of biofuel is expected to be consumed in various blends, from 7% to 100%.

Engineers onboard will be analyzing emissions data on nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides, CO2 and particulate matter from the fuel use, along with effects on power efficiency and engine wear.

The tests represent the first collaboration between Maersk and the U.S. Navy's Naval Sea Systems Command.

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