Industry firsts: K Line wraps up CO2 capture trials onboard its ship

Japanese shipping company Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) has successfully separated and captured CO2 from the exhaust gas emitted from a vessel, coal carrier Corona Utility.

The testing and installation are a part of the Carbon Capture on the Ocean (CC-Ocean) project which is supported by the Maritime Bureau of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT).

The Japanese firm teamed up with compatriot company Mitsubishi Shipbuilding and classification society ClassNK to develop and test “the world’s first” onboard CO2 capture plant.

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In early August 2021, after installation of a small-scale CO2 capture plant), experts from Mitsubishi Shipbuilding were onboard the vessel to operate, maintain the plant, and instruct the ship’s crew how to operate, as well as measured, analyzed the captured CO2 and evaluated the system performance.

From mid-September, the ship’s crew has been conducting the operation, measurement and maintaining the plant, and will continue to evaluate the safety and operability of the CO2 capture plant in order to sort out the issues to be considered and conduct research and development for future commercialization.

As a result of the demonstration, the captured CO2 had a purity of more than 99.9%, which is in line with the planned performance, the company revealed.

The captured CO2 can be used in a wide range of applications, including chemical processes to enhance the production of fertilizer or methanol, general use such as dry ice for cooling, and enhanced oil recovery (EOR) to increase crude oil production.

The project is expected to contribute to the long-term reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, K Line also noted.

In April 2021, the company launched a new department focusing on businesses and projects for carbon neutrality including renewable energy.

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The new unit was set up as the demand for decarbonization in the sector continues to grow, putting major pressure on the businesses to move toward carbon neutrality.