Offshore fuel supply

The worldwide market for fuel is still modifying to the replacements applied by the International Marine Organization (IMO) 2020. The dissimilarities in the limitation of sulfur become lessened from 3.50% to 0.50% has universal effects. It affects the world refining and shipping industries, even obstructing the heavy requirements for particular bunker fuels. 

The high demand in the market for high sulfur fuel oil (HSFO) has left a fall all of a sudden. As shipowners are looking toward the exploration of ships options. As a consequence of the transfer from HSFO to very low sulfur oil (VLSFO), the fuel oil market splits into three sectors. JBC observes the market is going to comprise VLSFO, high sulfur-run fuel oil (HSSR). It directly originates from a certain crude unit and cracked HSFO (it is a sophisticated refining methods’ by-product).

Sea Sail Shipping recognizes the latest changes that the marine fuel supply or shipping industry is facing. As a renowned coating provider to secure your assets, we always offer the correct coating for your requirements. We manufacture MarineLINE to secure cargo holds from any hostile marine cargos that include methanol. Here, we will talk about the development and various marine fuel oil availability nowadays. Apart from them, we will also cover the technical adversities from blending bunkers, and the high need for storage of fuel oil. 

  • Marine Fuel Usage Growth:

As we all know that this marine industry is rapidly developing. Starting from the 1960s, heavy fuel oil (HFO) has had command over the marine industry, especially on offshore fuel supply. However, the effect of its on human health along with the environment is increasingly asking for a change. Thus, the IMO took the decision to expand the industry away from HFO into fresh fuels with minimum harmful impact. This minimal harm will aftermath human health and the environment. The fuel sulfur regulations, lead the changes toward low-sulfur fuels and fuel availability, fuel quality, scrubbers, and stability come further.   

  • Available Marine Fuel Oil Types:

Petroleum is the main source of fuel usage in the shipping industry. However, we know that this fuel is classified into two categories likely residual fuel oil grades and distillate. 

  • Residual Marine Fuel Oil (RM):

It is a certain type of diesel oil that needs higher filtration and requires heavy heating to use. It is mostly counted as low-quality fuel. Residual fuels resemble heavy yields and are sought down through the refinery. 

  •  Distillate Marine Fuel Oil (DM):

These are kind of vital crude oil components that vaporize n fractional distillation and it also been through condensing into liquid fractions. Generally, these types of fuels are familiar as Marine Gas Oil (MGO) and they never require any heating.

Cracked fuel oils are widely implied as fuel to generate power, large industrial heating plants, and marine bunkers. This heterogeneity of marine fuel supplies that observe precise emission limits made openings for different types of new fuels. As per the sulfur content, the RM and DM fuel oils are also divided into two other groups-

  • Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel Oil (ULSFO)
  • Very Low Sulfur Fuel Oil (VLSFO)
  • The Coming Days of Fuel Oil After IMO 2020:

The refining industry is making a large number of 0.50% sulfur blends. The shipping market requires to denote the addition form of the latest fuels in 2020. IMO 2020 indicates that ships are now no longer burning untreated high sulfur fuel oil (HSFO). This certain change appears as a challenge before ship owners and fuel oil manufacturers. This changed rule leaves three definite choices for shippers-

  1. Install scrubbers
  2. Turn the fuel intake to the required low-sulfur fuel oil (LSFO) that is similar to a distillate.
  3. Need to switch to liquid natural gas (LNG) propulsion systems.
  • Technical Barriers from Various Suppliers’ Bunkers Blending

In offshore fuel supply, an enthralling shift in the combination applied to produce marine fuels. The main concern appears mainly when the blended products are not getting compatible with each other components. Even, the shipowners faced problems regarding mixing various VLSFOs from numerous manufacturers which could stop transfer lines and filters. This may cause serious engine issues.

Apart from the compatibility, bunkers blending from various suppliers can take you to fuel incompatibility, instability, and other technical barriers. Among such barriers may affect the thing in the following means-

  • Viscosity
  • Flash Point
  • Cold Flow Properties
  • Fame
  • Post-IMO 2020 Fuel Oil Storage Requirement:

Shifting fuel and the extra need for lower-sulfur fuels will drive changes in the overall world refining market. The following things are also should come under consideration while we talk about post-IMO 2020 fuel oil storage requirements. So let’s have a look at them. 

The demand for HSFO is divided and distributed between three competing sectors. The coming options and decisions are not only noun with the marine industry. The following groups are also included-

  1. Utilities- To generate power, from here mostly cracked HSFO is burned
  2. Bunkering- Here, things are cracked, and straight-run HSFO is combined to make it used as scrubber-fitted ships.
  3. Sophisticated refineries- Here either the HSFO is blended with crude or utilized as a non-crude feedstock.    


IMO 2020 has brought one of the biggest and most inclusive problems in the shipping and refining industries. However, the shipowners and the associated people need to take up these challenges.  

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