Data Could be Key to Robust Air Emissions Monitoring

Tuesday November 6, 2018

Danish software company explicit.dk is the name behind the computer power driving Denmark's airborne ship emissions monitoring programme.

As Danish waters fall within the Baltic Sea emission control area (ECA) through which thousands of ships pass in transit and where sulfur in bunker fuel is capped at 0.1%, the attractiveness of an airborne system is easy to see.

Explicit's methodology is to use mini-sensors attached to a helicoptor or drone to secure the data from within a ship's plume. Its software will calibrate the captured data to determine whether or not the ship's fuel complies with the rules.

"We deliver a data set," chief executive Jon Knudsen told to Ship & Bunker

The authorities can then use that data to take further action, he added.

Testing the intergrity of this data has been crucial to the project's success so far. Large scale testing took place in Rotterdam two years ago while the company worked with Maersk and DFDS to compare its results with those taken directly from a ship.

The comparative testing has validated the approach and put explicit's software on the map.

The company currently has the contract (up for renewal later next year) with the Danish Environment Protection Agency to monitor shipping for ECA compliance.

Knudsen says there is a lot of interest in what his company is doing.

As the global sulfur cap on bunker fuel is soon to fall to 0.5% and with shipping sectors, such as the cruise industry, coming under increasing pressure on air pollution, that interest will only grow.