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Thursday, May 28, 2020 

The Lubrizol Corporation says it has become the first lubricant additive technology supplier to join the Getting to Zero Coalition, an international group currently endorsed by 14 governments and comprising more than 100 organisations, which aims to drive the development of commercially viable, zero-emissions deep-sea ships by 2030.

Lubrizol says it can offer a wealth of experience in lubricant and fuel research, having recently analysed IMO 2020-compliant very low sulphur fuel oil blends to develop a robust cylinder oil additive package to handle the widely varying properties of these fuels.

“Joining the Getting to Zero Coalition is an opportunity for Lubrizol to contribute to one of the most important challenges of our time,” said Simon Tarrant (pictured), business manager - large engines. “It is also a chance to align with forward-thinking industry stakeholders to gain some insight into the engine and fuel solution challenges of the future.”

The coalition has chosen 2030 as its target date because most ships after that date will still be sailing in 2050, by which time IMO hopes to at least decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping by half. To fulfil that vision, a big proportion of the fleet will need to operate on low- or zero-carbon fuels.

New fuels and enhanced engine design will bring new operating condition challenges. For example, while today’s lubricants must counter the corrosion caused by sulphuric acid in cylinders—the result of sulphur in fuel—new fuels will form different acids. New lubricant formulations will therefore be needed to tackle any challenges that arise.

Ian Bown, technical manager – marine diesel engine oils, Lubrizol, said: “We are talking with engine manufacturers to understand the challenges that new fuels might bring. This will help us to evaluate the type of additive chemistry required in the future. But to gain more understanding we need in-service testing, which depends on the availability of ships operating on the relevant fuels.”

“We are excited about the important work the coalition is doing and look forward to working together to help the shipping industry achieve its emissions goals by 2030,” said Tarrant.

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