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The University of Southampton

Kittiwake Developments

Kittiwake Developments is a leading global provider of machinery condition monitoring, fuel and lube oil analysis and marine water testing. Kittiwake's test kits and test equipment effectively measure, monitor and manage the quality of essential fluids used to maintain and operate capital equipment.

Detergents used in marine engines react with heavy fuel oils. High levels of sulphur require oil to be sprayed onto the cylinder walls and are then removed. The spray rates of cylinder oil are operator controlled. Ideally the rates will provide just enough oil to neutralise the acidic combustion.

However, if there is insufficient oil used it produce corrosive wear which can vastly accelerate wear rates, equating to even higher expense. Excess oil goes to waste. Operators will generally run on the (oil) rich side to minimise wear. If a method to measure the detergent levels remaining in the scrape down was developed there is potential for savings of £100s to £1000s per day per ship.

In this KTP, Kittiwake worked with the University of Southampton’s Engineering and Environment, and Chemistry, units to investigate the feasibility of developing a sensor that could determine the detergent levels in the scrape down oil from marine two-stroke heavy diesel engines.


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