Since 1 January 2020, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has enforced a 0.50% global sulphur cap for the shipping industry to reduce sulphur oxide emissions. A comparison of pre-IMO 2020 fuels and post-IMO 2020 fuels reveals that the latter exhibit greater instability, waxiness, lower density & viscosity, lower micro carbon residue (MCR), lower calculated carbon aromaticity index (CCAI), lower vanadium content, higher net specific energy, higher pour point, and higher acid number. The decreased stability reserve (higher paraffinic and lower aromatic content) of post-IMO 2020 fuels also raises concerns about compatibility issues when different fuels are mixed.
To address these challenges, Maritec lab is equipped with the necessary equipment and testing methods to assess the cleanliness, stability, stability reserve, compatibility, and cold flow properties of post-IMO fuels. Given that fuel stability is the primary concern with Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oils (VLSFOs), this article focuses on reviewing fuel stability, fuel stability reserve, and the corresponding analysis techniques.