Maersk Line has signed an agreement with Spanish energy company Compania Espanola De Petroleos S.A.U. (CEPSA) and London-based Quadrise Fuels International to test trial Marine MSAR – an alternative marine fuel developed by Quadrise and expected to provide a cheaper and potentially environmentally safer alternative to heavy fuel oil.
The trials are due to begin in the first half of 2016, and will see the fuel supplied from the Gibraltar-San Roque refinery to Maersk ships following the installation of an MSAR manufacturing unit at the site. Installation and operation permits are currently being sought for the new unit.
The trial program is expected to run until the end of 2016, or early 2017, when engine tests on the fuel will be completed. Subsequently, the sale of the fuel from the refinery would be made following regulatory and commercial approvals.
“We are delighted to have this opportunity to meet the fuel requirements of a leading partner in the marine industry with Maersk using a pioneering technology from Quadrise,” said Federico Molina, head of Cepsa´s Refining Unit.
Quadrise has developed the Marine MSAR to provide an alternative for shipping, refining and power generation markets.
The MSAR oil-in-water emulsion fuel technology reportedly makes heavy hydrocarbon residues easier to use by producing a lower viscosity oil mixed with water. Alternative fuel emulsions, which are water in oil, are produced from heavy fuel oil. By emulsifying refinery residues, as opposed to heavy fuel oil, the refiner is able to create more value, and also a lower priced fuel, by selling the distillates that would traditionally be blended into its heavy fuel oil, according to CEPSA.