Eco Valencia saves 5.1 pct in fuel with Silverstream’s air lubrication

Eco Valencia. Image Courtesy: Grimaldi
Eco Valencia. Image Courtesy: Grimaldi

Grimaldi Group’s newbuild ro-ro vessel Eco Valencia has saved 5.1 % in fuel consumption and emissions with the use of Silverstream’s air lubrication system, performance testing figures show.

Eco Valencia, the first of twelve 5th Generation (GG5G) class hybrid RoRo ships, was delivered to Grimaldi in October 2020.

The ship was already operational since mid-November on the regular line connecting the Italian ports of Livorno and Savona and the Spanish ports of Barcelona and Valencia.

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The testing took place since Eco Valencia entered service in the Mediterranean.

“During this process, the Silverstream System was comprehensively tested at various vessel speeds and in a range of sea states, to calculate and prove fuel and emissions savings,” Silverstream said.

The technology produces a thin layer of micro-bubbles over the flat bottom of the hull, reducing the frictional resistance between the water and the hull, improving operational and environmental efficiencies.

 “The recorded savings figure of 5.1% exceeded initial predictions and shows that Grimaldi’s vision to install our air lubrication technology as a fuel and emissions reduction solution has paid off, Noah Silberschmidt, CEO, Silverstream Technologies, said.

The trials conducted with the ship in fully loaded service showed the air bubbles covering the entire hull bottom.

“We are particularly pleased to have been able to complete this trial despite the obvious challenges to international travel and supply chains posed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Silberschmidt said.

“All of this takes place against the backdrop of impending vessel efficiency requirements, such as the IMO’s proposed Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI), which further amplifies the central role that clean technologies must have within shipping’s decarbonisation pathway.”

Four vessels with the system onboard have already been built at China Merchants Group Limited’s Jinling Shipyard: Eco Valencia, Eco Barcelona, Eco Livorno and Eco Savona.

Silverstream is also installing air bubble systems on Grimaldi Group subsidiary Finnlines’ 3 newbuild GG5G ro-ro vessels and 2 newly ordered ro-pax vessels.