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Products & services

Wärtsilä gas scrubber ready for volume production

The development of Exhaust Gas Scrubber technology for SOx emissions control has advanced to the point that it is now possible to quickly ramp up production volumes to meet the increasing demand in the marine market as regulations become more stringent. Wärtsilä and Metso have extensive experience of scrubber technology in land-based installation. In December 2010 Wärtsilä received its first commercial scrubber order for a marine application.

Wärtsilä Corporation, the global leader in complete power lifecycle solutions and services, and Metso Corporation have signed an agreement to co-operate in developing and delivering scrubber systems for marine applications. Under the terms of this agreement, Metso is to supply the scrubber unit, while Wärtsilä is responsible for world-wide sales and integration of complete, certified, documented marine scrubber systems, including automation, water treatment, and ancillaries. Both Wärtsilä and Metso have extensive experience in the use of scrubber technology for land-based installations.

Long co-operation and comprehensive experience

Wärtsilä and Metso have already for a number of years worked together in the development of scrubber technology. In 2005 the two companies, together with other companies within the Finnish maritime cluster, embarked on a programme to develop a feasible marine scrubber.

By autumn 2007, the project had reached the stage of being ready for a test installation. A tanker, the Suula, owned by the Neste Shipping division of the Finnish company, Neste Oil Oyj, was made available and the project-testing phase began in November 2008. During the test period, which was completed in mid-2010, the Suula operated primarily in the Baltic Sea but also visited many North Sea harbours. The sulphur removal efficiency was proven to be excellent and well within the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) most stringent limits. Furthermore, the discharge water was also proven to be well in compliance with IMO Washwater Guidelines.

This extensive development programme, from the establishment of the project group in 2005 until finalisation of the pilot tests on board a working tanker in 2010, culminated in the Wärtsilä SOx scrubber becoming the first such unit to be certified for marine applications. The classification societies Det Norske Veritas, Germanisher Lloyd and Bureau Veritas have granted the Wärtsilä unit a SOx Emissions Compliance Certificate.

First commercial order for Wärtsilä

In December 2010, Wärtsilä received its first commercial order for a scrubber for a marine application. Containerships Ltd Oy, a Finnish shipping customer, placed a contract for a turnkey installation onboard its vessel, Containerships VII, a ship equipped with a Wärtsilä W7L64 main engine The scope of the order includes a Wärtsilä fresh water scrubber. The scrubber will be delivered to the customer in August 2011.

The more stringent IMO sulphur regulations, which require strict sulphur oxides control, are due to enter into force in January 2015 and will apply to Sulphur Emissions Control Areas (SECAs). With this in mind, a rapid ramp-up and development of the scrubber market is foreseen. Following the systematic development of this technology, its successful validation, and the agreement between Wärtsilä and Metso, Wärtsilä is committed and ready to fulfil the needs of the shipping industry regarding scrubber technology. The units can be delivered both for new ships, and as a retrofit for ships already in service.

Princess newbuilds to feature Membrane BioReactor

Two vessels to be built by Fincantieri for Princess Cruises will become the latest cruise ships to feature Membrane BioReactor (MBR), the technology specifically designed to meet wastewater discharge requirements in even the most sensitive of seas.

Each 3,600 passenger capacity, 141,000gt ship will be fitted with two MBR24 systems, to enable responsible operations anywhere in the world. With the delivery date for the first vessel due in spring 2013, the first two MBRs will be delivered in August 2011, for installation/commissioning by December 2012. The second vessel is due to be delivered in spring 2014 with equipment delivery in May 2012 and installation/commissioning by December 2013.

Hamworthy’s MBR has been shown to surpass new IMO wastewater discharge regulations by a significant margin: it achieves suspended solids limits of 3.1mg/l, BOD5 of 2.6mg/l, while faecal coliform islimited to 10.6 cfu per 100m/l. Both residual chlorine levels and pH are also within limits defined for sensitive waters.

Based on biological degradation and membrane separation, the MBR yields the highest quality discharge without requiring any addition or generation of chemicals hazardous to the maritime or shipboard environment. To date, Hamworthy has supplied over 100MBR units to a range of new and existing cruise ships, ferries, offshore rigs, naval ships, and yachts since their introduction in 2000. 

Vizada and Thrane & Thrane in new maritime broadband venture

Vizada, the leading independent provider of global satellite-based mobility services and hardware manufacturer Thrane & Thrane have signed a partnership agreement to launch a new broadband offer to the maritime market. Via their shared distribution channels, the partnership will offer shipping companies a unique maritime mobile broadband package that combines the strengths of Thrane & Thrane hardware with Vizada VSAT and MSS services and solutions.


The maritime mobile broadband package includes Thrane & Thrane’s SAILOR 900 VSAT and SAILOR FleetBroadband terminals combined with Vizada’s Pharostar VSAT and FleetBroadband service and the recently launched Vizada XChange, a unified platform that provides a secure and controlled communications environment for voice and broadband data. Vizada complements the package with Vizada Solutions for messaging, prepaid communications and traffic control.


Thrane & Thrane’s innovative new Ku-band antenna, SAILOR 900 VSAT, is already being tested over Vizada’s Pharostar global Ku-band VSAT service. SAILOR 900 VSAT is a powerful, quick and easy-to-install stabilized Ku-band VSAT antenna that will be available for vessels of all size and type following its forthcoming commercial release in summer 2011. Thrane & Thrane’s global service network will provide worldwide technical support and on board assistance for the VSAT antenna and FleetBroadband systems.


Vizada’s Pharostar VSAT service will be supplemented with FleetBroadband in areas where Ku-band coverage is unavailable, therefore providing global coverage at all times. The service connectivity switching between VSAT and FleetBroadband will be managed through the new Vizada XChange platform. Vizada’s owned and operated global VSAT infrastructure provides the flexibility to create specially designed VSAT airtime flat fees suited to the needs of the transportation and merchant sector and driving down costs for shipping companies.


Vizada and Thrane & Thrane will also co-operate and combine their efforts towards their shared distribution channels to increase the effectiveness of marketing, distribution, delivery and support for the new package.