On 1 January 2020, a new limit on the sulphur content in the fuel oil used on board ships came into force, marking a significant milestone to improve air quality, preserve the environment and protect human health.

Known as “IMO 2020”, the rule limits the sulphur in the fuel oil used on board ships operating outside designated emission control areas to 0.50% m/m (mass by mass) - a significant reduction from the previous limit of 3.5%. Within specific designated emission control areas the limits were already stricter (0.10%). This new limit was made compulsory following an amendment to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL).

The resulting reduction in sulphur oxide (SOx) emissions from ships is having major health and environmental benefits for the world, particularly for populations living close to ports and coasts. Sulphur oxides are harmful to human health, causing respiratory, cardiovascular and lung disease. Once released in the atmosphere, SOx  can lead to acid rain, which impacts crops, forests and aquatic species and contributes to the acidification of the oceans.

Many shipping companies have switched to Low Sulphur HFO in order to attempt to comply with IMO rules. Unfortunately, the low sulphur has had a disastrous effect on many ships’ engines and failures have resulted causing massive problems. This is likely due to the reduced natural lubricity of low sulphur HFO compared to traditional HFO.

ElimiNOX is gathering interest from Governments in several countries, and major Oil companies, by working to reduce carbon emissions in all forms of transport.
From Shipping, Coal and Oil-Fired Power Stations, to all forms of diesel engines, ElimiNox has recorded impressive results gained from incorporating the technology of SulNox Group Plc.

The use of Heavy Fuel Oils (HFO) in industry today

Heavy fuel oils (HFO) are used in industry and the marine sector and are the principle fuel source that has accompanied the worldwide growth in shipping from the latter half
of the 20th century onwards. Today, international shipping carries around 90 per cent of intercontinental trade which has led to a massive consumption of HFO.

HFO combustion is coming under increasing scrutiny from environmental and governmental pressure. This is particularly true of the power generation and shipping industries which often rely on HFO as a primary source of energy. However, HFO combustion has a serious problem which gives rise to the environmental impact. When not enough oxygen can combine with a hydrocarbon fuel during combustion the result is incomplete combustion. Incomplete combustion of HFO in engines results in waste comprising of both undesirable emissions and unspent HFO. Current methodology to increase oxygen by blowing air into the combustion chamber is inadequate. 

The 21st century is on a relentless drive to reduce waste, pollutants and harmful emissions. IMO 2020 is the International Maritime Organization’s ruling that from 1 January 2020, there must a be significant reduction of marine emissions. One solution to this problem is to improve the burn profile by increasing the oxygen availability. The current methods of blowing into engines to increase oxygen availability clearly is not increasing the oxygen availability enough as the fuel ratio of HFO in these engines is still too “rich” which causes production of soot and black particulate matter which has been linked with serious human health issues.

What are the alternatives? 

Scrubbers are essentially exhaust cleaning technologies that enable the use of high sulphur fuel whilst remaining compliant with low sulphur regulations. 5000 ships could install scrubbers by 2025 at a cost of c$15bn, payback is estimated 4 years (source Goldman Sachs 30/05/18)

Much of the collected soot and harmful emission debris is sometimes dumped at sea which still causes significant pollution throughout ecosystems.

ElimiNox in conjunction with Sulnox and Scimed has an alternative cost-effective solution at a fraction of the cost of installing scrubbers using the technology consisting of ultrasonically mixing water, HFO and SulNox into a stable emulsion with similar or better attributes with ongoing maintenance kept to a minimum.

The current cost per scrubber system is around €2.5mn per vessel (source: Wartsila).

Although it can vary between €1mn and €6mn depending on the vessel size; for example, cruise vessels typically tend to be towards the top end of the range as they have two systems installed. An ultrasound/HFO/Emulsion System in comparison, would be c25% of scrubber costs.

A similar system has been developed for deployment in coal-fired power stations which use substantial quantities of HFO as part of the fuel ignition process. The ElimiNOX delivery system is perfectly suited to power stations with their relatively simple combustion system and the anticipated benefits could be substantial.

We would be pleased to receive inquiries from any interested parties.


Power Generation

Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) is a general term used to describe a range of fuel oils made from the heavier parts of crude oil after the lighter parts are removed to produce petrol, diesel and other light products. The most common technologies used to generate power from HFO are reciprocating engines and gas turbines. The choice of meeting energy demands through fossil-fuel power plants, including those that use HFO as a fuel is coming under increasing scrutiny. 

Being the literal fuel of modern life, electricity is an absolute, unassailable necessity, functioning as the cornerstone of home and business life alike. Having such a pivotal purpose, electricity creation and provision needs to be smooth, efficient and reliable.

A single hydrocarbon power plant working 24/7 can create the same amount of energy as 1,000 wind turbines running for the same amount of time? Additionally, power plants that make use of hydrocarbon fuels, such as HFO, can operate solely on the energy that they create; during the electricity creation and supply process, they can remain entirely off the grid.

The dependable availability of this fuel, as well as its greater power creation capability, sees HFO also being used as a backup fuel supply for hybrid plants using alternative fuel sources, such as wind or solar. HFO power plants offer long term reliable operation expectation, long-life expectancy, lower running and maintenance costs, and low noise advantages – necessary elements for an around-the-clock operation.

Unlike other air pollutants, impacts from sulphur emissions are often controlled by placing limits in legislation or policy that governs fuel specifications. A plant of capacity greater than 5.5MWe operating at full load would likely lead to emissions greater than 25,000 tCO2 per year.

Heavy oil is essentially the cheapest fuel on the market for generating electricity with perhaps the exception of burning municipal waste. The costs for this fuel are so low because there is not a lot of demand. Most developed countries have environmental air pollution regulations that heavy oil fired power plants find very difficult to comply with, requiring significant investment in pollution control equipment.

The proprietary ultrasonic technology used in conjunction with Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsion Stabilizer plays a vital part in the process of substantially reducing toxic emissions and saving your business money through increased fuel efficiency and lower engine, burner and heat exchanger maintenance costs.

Ordinarily, heavy fuel oil (HFO) has to be heated to temperatures between 100°C and 120°C before it takes on liquid form, for use in the burners or in static generator engines, which not only costs a staggering amount of money, but also sees a loss of up to one fifth of the users’ HFO in the fuel-heating process. The savings on toxic waste emissions from the reduction of heating the HFO will be significant on a global scale.

Trials and tests on Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsifier showed that the when mixed with product HFO only needs to be heated to between 70°C-90°C (a reduction of 30°C to 40°C), meaning around 30% less fuel is needed for the heating process, which means less HFO is used or needed.

Burning less fuel reduces toxic emissions and the Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsifier will naturally be 30-40% less polluting than any standard grade of HFO.

For around 100 years, companies have tried and failed to successfully create a stable ‘water-in-fuel’ emulsion. The Hielscher report shows, beyond doubt, that Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsion Stabilizer enables a remarkable, stable emulsion with up to 30% water added and as little as 1% Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsion Stabilizer (a stability that has shown a shelf-life in excess of 5 + years).

The SGS Certificate tells us that using Berol® 6446 HFO Emulsion Stabilizer in HFO 380 fuel reduces smoke and soot (particulate matter), NOx gases and sulphur emissions and that the strong acid value in the ash is zero. Choosing to use any of the SulNOx products will dramatically reduce ‘net emissions’, which is a huge step forward in the fight against global warming.

We would be pleased to receive inquiries from any interested parties.



HFO has been a reliable fuel source for industry for decades; initially used as a marine fuel, it was soon put to use in other industries, such as the power industry. This fuel is frequently used as a backup or alternative when coal-powered power plants are low in their coal reserves. With other fuel options being expensive by comparison, HFO quickly became a preferred energy solution for power operations – including those at mines, where energy is a pressing concern.

Many countries experience a significant power deficit, affecting the operation times of mines, which lead to a series of other financial impacts such as decreased work times and decreased profit: if the mine cannot churn over the workload it was created to, it cannot meet targets or quotas. 

This risk is a huge cause for concern for mine operations across the continent, resulting in an active search for more reliable, cost-effective power sources. At present, the energy options for a mine are typically:

  • Power from the national grid 
  • Using hydrocarbon fuels like HFO and/or diesel 
  • Making use of renewable energy sources, such as solar power 

Our solutions don't require massive Capex investment and don't force a decision between economic savings or emissions savings - you get both.  

Despite the variety of energy solutions available, selecting one to be used at mines and in mining operations is no simple matter – each option has to be carefully considered. 

Use of a country’s national grid may seem like the most reasonable choice but can present a host of problems that simply cannot be ignored. The national grid can be unreliable and may pose problems through unplanned (or even planned!) power cuts, rolling blackouts and poor, damaged or unmaintained infrastructure resulting in power outages. 

Unlike many other industries or businesses, mines usually have a structured, set lifetime – meaning they will only operate for a specific period, or until the resources being mined deplete – the time for which is usually carefully estimated as well. With this schedule in mind, it is unrealistic to rely on a power source that may not be always be operational. Amongst a mine’s other costs, sourcing power from the national grid also incurs costs – costs that must be covered through the carrying out and completion of the mine’s workload. A mine cannot cover the cost of its power source if the source of its energy isn’t powering the mine long enough to do just that!

With national grids no longer seeming like a viable option, energy supply is often internalised through means of diesel generators, usually outsourced and rented from private companies. Generators vary in size, with larger generators usually being used at bigger mines. The larger machinery will require more diesel, mounting setup and fuel expenses further… it’s easy to see how costs can climb when using diesel, an increasingly expensive commodity!

Then there’s the option of renewable energy, becoming popular in other industries. Solar energy may be the most popular so far, with solar panels popping up on rooftops, street poles and businesses across the continent. The capex for this option for a mining context, however, often has mines turning back to conventional power sources, or using it to supplement renewable energy. With such high upfront costs, investors may be reluctant to foot the bill, despite the fact that, in most cases, the cost of renewable energy plants/infrastructure is recouped over time.

We would be pleased to receive inquiries from any interested parties.