I founded Silverstream Technologies over a decade ago with the aim of creating a truly unique, radical and innovative clean technology company with a mission to significantly reduce emissions across the global fleet. The Silverstream® System, now the market leading air lubrication technology for the maritime industry, was, at the time of its invention, viewed with much scepticism in a market uncertain about the proven potential of energy efficiency technologies.
Fast forward ten years and air lubrication systems – including our Silverstream® System – are now regularly being mentioned as a key efficiency strategy for shipping.
Nowhere was this more apparent than in the mentions of ALS, and maritime clean technologies, by major industry players during Capital Link’s recent ‘Decarbonisation in Shipping’ forum.
The shipping industry’s roadmap to net-zero
In the ‘The Roadmap to Zero – Moving from Discussion to Delivery’ session, Dr Grahaeme Henderson OBE, SVP, Shipping & Maritime, Shell, and Michael Parker, Chairman, Global Shipping Logistics & Offshore, Citi, firstly highlighted the necessity for the market to be able to deploy mature clean technologies, such as ALS, alongside future fuels to achieve carbon reduction targets.
The outcome of their discussion completely aligns with our thinking. Much of the decarbonisation debate in shipping has, to-date, focused on the importance of establishing a clear range of alternative, low carbon fuels and developing the infrastructure to underpin them.
However, to solely focus on these future fuels ignores measures for efficiency that are currently on the market and fails to consider the symbiotic and integral relationship between future fuels and fuel efficiency. It also ignores the reality that the pathway to decarbonisation requires action now, and the industry cannot wait for future fuels that need considerable development from an infrastructure, price and viability perspective.
This was very much conveyed again by Claire Wright, General Manager, Commercial & Shipping, Shell, who in the ‘Looking Ahead To 2050 – Zero Emission Alternative Energy Fuels: Ammonia – Hydrogen – Methanol – Biofuels’ conference, spoke of the immediate and longer-term solutions required to enable effective decarbonisation. Meanwhile, a range of energy efficient technologies, such as air lubrication, alongside future fuels were highlighted as critical in achieving significant emissions’ reduction.
Increasing fuel efficiency with fuel agnostic clean technologies
We were extremely pleased to be mentioned by our partners at both Carnival Corporation and Shell, with Tom Strang, SVP, Maritime Affairs, Carnival Corporation, stating that “Air lubrication is the single biggest proportion of propulsion load savings – around 5%”, and to hear Shell reference the impressive performance achieved by the Silverstream® System on their LNG carrier Methane Patricia Camila.
The comments from these industry leaders clearly show the operational effectiveness of ALS and the readiness of the Silverstream® System as a core technology solution to address their decarbonisation ambitions. The recently completed trials of the Silverstream® System onboard Shell’s LNG carrier, and Grimaldi Group’s ro-ro, the Eco Valencia, which following joint verification, achieved net savings of 6.6% and 5.1% respectively.
While expert engineering, pure determination and an increasing demand from ship owners and operators for proven clean technologies has been central to our increasing orderbook, third party validation and unrivalled efficiency savings of between 5-10% (depending on vessel type) have propelled us from start-up to leader.
We are proud and grateful of the mentions of our System during this forum and the continued recognition of our technology as a mature solution amidst shipping’s suite of energy efficiency technologies.
With further orders in the pipeline, we are relentlessly focused on meeting the demands for our Systems across the global fleet and reaching or ultimate goal of the Silverstream® System becoming a newbuild-standard, as well as a strategic technology to decarbonise and improve the operational efficiency of the existing fleet.
Founder & CEO at Silverstream Technologies