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Creating new solutions

Development of groundbreaking technology to cut emissions

Wärtsilä and ABB Turbo Systems are co-operating in a joint development programme for a new and groundbreaking application of two-stage turbocharging on large diesel engines. Advanced engine technology, together with two-stage turbocharging, offers significant advantages in fuel consumption and engine emissions.

The application of two-stage turbocharging technology on Wärtsilä diesel engines has been developed through close co-operation between Wärtsilä and ABB Turbo Systems. In this programme, Wärtsilä is focusing on developing advanced engine technology, which with the turbocharger, is able to reach the highest possible performance and become a cost-effective commercial solution for its customers. ABB Turbo Systems is delivering the turbocharging technology with defined performance in terms of airflow, pressure ratios and efficiency.

Development of fuel cell technology

A fuel cell is a clean, efficient and reliable method of producing energy making it a highly attractive option for distributed power generation. Wärtsilä has been developing fuel cell technology for decentralised power generation and marine applications since the year 2000. The company's fuel cell development team is focusing on developing, designing and manufacturing a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) system. In this work Wärtsilä is taking advantage of its extensive know-how in combined heat and power generation, and the company's in-depth knowledge of its marine customers' needs.

Part of the R&D programme covers the development of the WFC20 and WFC50 units, 20 kW and 50 kW SOFC units. Wärtsilä has continued operation of the first demonstration unit in Vaasa, where the fuel cell is driven by biogas collected from a landfill. A methanol based unit has been demonstrated within the METHAPU project, which was successfully concluded during 2010. Development of larger units have progressed through the manufacturing of two 50 kW units within the frames of DemoSOFC and Large SOFC projects, both of which are partially funded by the EU. Commercialisation of fuel cell units for onshore and offshore power plant applications is proceeding in parallel with the development program.

Enabling gas operations in ships

Multifuel operation using Wärtsilä's Dual Fuel (DF) technology offers environmental advantages of gas engines. It allows low CO2, NOx, SOx and particulate emissions, while having redundancy in terms of liquid fuel in case gas is not available. DF technology also allows a choice of fuel based on the cost and availability of gas vs. liquid fuel. The use of DF technology with gas as the fuel is an optimum solution for vessels that spend a lot of time in ECA zones, and for vessels that carry gas with them, i.e LNG carriers.

Wärtsilä is developing a complete portfolio of medium-speed gas engines and related fuel handling equipment in order to be able to deliver solutions for LNG tankers and gas-fuelled ships in general.

Expanding the fuel versatility

Wärtsilä is utilising more resources on the use of alternative fuels as part of its pro-active approach to providing cost-effective, flexible and environmentally sound solutions for its customers. Wärtsilä studies different fuel sources, such as vegetable oils, animal fats and emulsions, in its fuel laboratory. During this year, we have tested engines running on jatropha oil, fish oil, chicken oil, traditional animal fats and different kinds of synthetic bio-oils.

Enabling global transition to a more sustainable electricity infrastructure

Wärtsilä develops its products and market approach to offer high value solutions for a more modern and more sustainable energy infrastructure. Wärtsilä's dynamic grid stability solutions make it possible to install much larger quantities of variable, non-dispatchable wind power capacity to the electrical grids without losing system stability. The same dynamic power plant solutions offer unique value in grid contingency situations where dynamic features such as extremely fast starting (5 minutes to full load), loading and stopping, are of paramount importance. Additional benefits are high energy efficiency over a wide load range, multifuel operation, no water usage, and the ability to locate the power generation facility in the load pockets, i.e. inside cities, even in California with the most stringent emission requirements. The combination of wind power and Wärtsilä dynamic power plants offers high potential for dramatically reducing CO2 worldwide.