Marine Fuel Analysis and Bunker Fuel Blending for MARPOL Compliance
International Maritime Organization (IMO) Guidelines
The shipping industry is continually experiencing regulatory changes driven by increasing environmental concerns, resulting in ever-tightening regulations restricting sulfur (S) emissions from ships’ fuel. Under MARPOL sulfur regulations, marine fuel oil (bunker fuel) used outside of emission control areas must meet a 0.5% wt threshold to comply with new IMO 2020 requirements. This threshold is substantially reduced from the previous limit of 3.5%, requiring traditional bunker fuels to be blended down to meet the new sulfur content specifications. As efforts continue to lower and reduce sulfur from marine fuels, Rigaku offers the benchtop NEX QC Marine Fuel Analyzer (MFA) and the NEX XT total sulfur gauge for bunker fuel blending.
Benchtop Marine Fuel Analyzer for Fast Sulfur Analysis
For at-line sulfur analysis onboard ships or at bunkering ports, the Rigaku NEX QC MFA is an energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence (EDXRF) analyzer optimized for the routine determination of sulfur in oil. NEX QC MFA is calibrated from 0.05 to 3.5 wt% S and is accurate to within 10ths of a ppm at 0.5 wt% S, easily meeting the industry's needs for existing ECAs and new IMO 2020 requirements. This analyzer delivers compliance with ASTM D4294 and ISO 8754 methods, and with multi-element capabilities, can measure more than sulfur. Monitor for nickel (Ni), vanadium (V), and iron (Fe) content in bunker fuels, or analyze fuels for zinc (Zn) to check for lube oil contamination.
Specifically designed for marine fuel applications, the Rigaku NEX QC MFA features an intuitive icon-driven touchscreen interface for easy operation and a built-in printer for convenience. The 50 kV X-ray tube and Peltier-cooled semiconductor detector deliver exceptional spectral resolution and throughput. The high voltage capability and multiple automated X-ray tube filters provide enhanced sensitivity and low limits of detection (LOD).
To determine traditional sulfur levels in bunker fuel, marine diesel, and other fuel oils, the NEX QC MFA offers compliance for ASTM D4294-10, ISO 20847, ISO 8754, IP 496, IP 336, and JIS K 2541-4. Meet MARPOL 2020 regulations and other international test methods all with one instrument.
Total Sulfur Analysis for Bunker Fuel Blending
For on-line sulfur analysis, Rigaku offers the advanced NEX XT total sulfur gauge for marine fuel blending. With a sulfur detection range of 200 parts-per-million (ppm) to 6 wt%, the NEX XT process analyzer helps ensure MARPOL compliance.
NEX XT delivers on-line, real-time X-ray transmission (XRT) measurement of sulfur in heavy oils, meeting the needs of blending operations supplying marine bunker fuels. Featuring uniquely engineered hardware and novel proprietary software technologies, the NEX XT system is faster, more sensitive, and much more compact than previous generation systems. Rigaku NEX XT provides continuous monitoring of sulfur at pressures up to 1480 psi and up to 200°C in custom configurations. NEX XT operates as a standalone analyzer or provides real-time closed-loop control when tied into a blending or plant-wide automation system.
Unique Flow Cell Design Resists Buildup
Because the NEX XT utilizes a transmission technique and a unique flow cell design, coatings of paraffin or other deposits on the analysis windows do not affect the sulfur measurement (as the coatings are a negligible part of the total X-ray path).
Complete Sulfur Analysis Needs
For complete sulfur analysis needs of refineries, pipelines, blending operations, bunkering terminals, and other storage facilities, the NEX XT process analyzer offers total sulfur measurement for crude, bunker fuel, fuel oils, and other highly viscous hydrocarbons, including residuums.