Drones To Sniff And Check ECA Compliance – Ready To Fly Out From Port Of Hamburg
EMSA (European Maritime Safety Agency) has confirmed that before the end of next year (2016), the dream of drones to check ECA compliance would become a reality. EMSA and EU have taken up the torch leading the global greenhouse gas emission reduction race.
“Member states are struggling to enforce the low-sulphur directives,” Leendert Bal, EMSA’s head of operations, told the Dow Jones news service. “We need to do as much measuring as possible and drones will help us do more measurements.”
European Space Agency (ESA) in collaboration with EMSA and EU will spearhead the satellite communication and transfer of data from the drones to shore monitoring stations. A feasibility study, including flights out of the port of Hamburg, has been planned to run through to July.
Bal said that if the experiment was successful, drones could start flying over ships regularly from later next year. It is to be noted that drones will not only monitor the emission by air but also any discharge from the ships to sea. It can also provide valuable assistance in monitoring oil pollution and other environmental impacts.
European officials are still assessing to finalize the kinds of drone that may be suitable for this function.
EMSA, in a presentation last month, indicated it would want an aircraft that could fly for at least four hours and have a range of 20 kilometers. It would be equipped with sulphur and CO2 detectors as well as equipment to recognise ships from their identification beacons.