The oil and gas industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation. Activity driven by the need for greater energy efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and long-term sustainability, and growing importance of technologies such as biofuel catalytic cracking. In the last three years alone, there have been over 534,000 patents filed and granted in the oil & gas industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Environment Sustainability in Oil & Gas: Maritime vessel propulsion bio-fuels. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 256,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the oil & gas industry, there are 40+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Maritime vessel propulsion bio-fuels is a key innovation area in environmental sustainability

Biofuels for maritime vessels are used in the form of biodiesel, biomethane, and algal biofuels.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 10+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established oil & gas companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of maritime vessel propulsion bio-fuels.

Key players in maritime vessel propulsion bio-fuels – a disruptive innovation in the oil & gas industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to maritime vessel propulsion bio-fuels

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Korea Development Bank 828 Unlock Company Profile
Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings 539 Unlock Company Profile
Samsung Heavy Industries 207 Unlock Company Profile
Kawasaki Heavy Industries 114 Unlock Company Profile
KCC 89 Unlock Company Profile
Wartsila 45 Unlock Company Profile
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries 37 Unlock Company Profile
Kobe Steel 30 Unlock Company Profile
Linde 22 Unlock Company Profile
Engie 16 Unlock Company Profile
TGE Group 10 Unlock Company Profile
Siemens 6 Unlock Company Profile
POSCO Holdings 5 Unlock Company Profile
Sumitomo Seika Chemicals 5 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Hyundai Heavy Industries is one of the leading patent filers in the maritime vessel propulsion using biofuels. The company’s HiMSEN Engine uses biofuels and an onshore demonstrated was held in 2021 with an aim of reducing carbon emissions.

Wärtsilä is conducting research into a wide range of fuels, including biofuels with an ultimate aim of reducing GHG emissions. The company formed a partnership with Boskalis and GoodFuels Marine for rapid development of marine biofuels. The purpose of the two-year programme is to test biofuels produced from industrial sector.

To reduce the environmental impact, Mitsubishi is planning to use renewable hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) for their marine engines. The HVO is produced from biomass and vegetable oils.

Biofuels for maritime vessel propulsion have potential to revolutionise marine sector as they are renewable, environment-friendly and have relatively less impact on marine ecosystems worldwide. However, this transition can only be driven by considerable improvement in technologies for producing biofuels suitable for maritime use.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the oil & gas industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Top 20 Oil & Gas Themes 2022.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.