Skip to main content

The future of ship engines: Renewable fuels and enabling technologies for decarbonization

by Scott J Curran, Brian C Kaul, Flavio Dal Forno Chuahy, Angelo Onorati, Raul Payri
Publication Type
Journal Name
International Journal of Engine Research
Publication Date
Page Numbers
0 to 00

Shipping is one of the most efficient transportation modes for moving freight globally. International regulations concerning decarbonization and emission reduction goals drive rapid innovations to meet the 2030 and 2050 greenhouse gas reduction targets. The internal combustion engines used for marine vessels are among the most efficient energy conversion systems. Internal combustion engines dominate the propulsion system architectures for marine shipping, and current marine engines will continue to serve for several decades. However, to meet the aggressive goals of low-carbon-intensity shipping, there is an impetus for further efficiency improvement and achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions. These factors drive the advancements in engine technologies, low-carbon fuels and fueling infrastructure, and emissions control systems. This editorial presents a perspective on the future of ship engines and the role of low-life cycle-carbon-fuels in decarbonizing the marine shipping sector. A selection of zero-carbon, net-zero carbon, and low-lifecycle-carbon-fuels are reviewed. This work focuses on the opportunities and challenges of displacing distillate fossil fuels for decarbonizing marine shipping. Enabling technologies such as next-generation air handling, fuel injection systems, and advanced combustion modes are discussed in the context of their role in the future of low-CO2 intensity shipping.