Investigation of effect on environmental performance of using LNG as fuel for engines in seaport tugboats

Lebedevas, Sergejus and Norkevičius, Lukas and Zhou, Peilin (2021) Investigation of effect on environmental performance of using LNG as fuel for engines in seaport tugboats. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, 9 (2). 123. ISSN 2077-1312 (

[thumbnail of Lebedevas-etal-JMSE-2021-Investigation-of-effect-on-environmental-performance]
Text. Filename: Lebedevas_etal_JMSE_2021_Investigation_of_effect_on_environmental_performance.pdf
Final Published Version
License: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 logo

Download (2MB)| Preview


Decarbonization of ship power plants and reduction of harmful emissions has become a priority in the technological development of maritime transport, including ships operating in seaports. Engines fueled by diesel without using secondary emission reduction technologies cannot meet MARPOL 73/78 Tier III regulations. The MEPC.203 (62) EEDI directive of the IMO also stipulates a standard for CO 2 emissions. This study presents the results of research on ecological parameters when a CAT 3516C diesel engine is replaced by a dual-fuel (diesel-liquefied natural gas) powered Wartsila 9L20DF engine on an existing seaport tugboat. CO 2, SO 2 and NO x emission reductions were estimated using data from the actual engine load cycle, the fuel consumption of the KLASCO-3 tugboat, and engine-prototype experimental data. Emission analysis was performed to verify the efficiency of the dual-fuel engine in reducing CO 2, SO 2 and NO x emissions of seaport tugboats. The study found that replacing a diesel engine with a dual-fuel-powered engine led to a reduction in annual emissions of 10% for CO 2, 91% for SO 2, and 65% for NO x. Based on today's fuel price market data an economic impact assessment was conducted based on the estimated annual fuel consumption of the existing KLASCO-3 seaport tugboat when a diesel-powered engine is replaced by a dual-fuel (diesel-natural gas)-powered engine. The study showed that a 33% fuel costs savings can be achieved each year. Based on the approved methodology, an ecological impact assessment was conducted for the entire fleet of tugboats operating in the Baltic Sea ports if the fuel type was changed from diesel to natural gas. The results of the assessment showed that replacing diesel fuel with natural gas achieved 78% environmental impact in terms of NO x emissions according to MARPOL 73/78 Tier III regulations. The research concludes that new-generation engines on the market powered by environmentally friendly fuels such as LNG can modernise a large number of existing seaport tugboats, significantly reducing their emissions in ECA regions such as the Baltic Sea.