CIMAC World Congress - Where The Engine Industry Meets

CIMAC World Congress - Where The Engine Industry Meets

 CIMAC World Congress.
CIMAC World Congress.

Published Mar 4, 2023 6:19 PM by The Maritime Executive

Usually every three years, the large engine industry meets for the CIMAC World Congress. Then came COVID-19 and changed everything. The congress planned for 2022 had to be postponed. But next year, after Helsinki in 2016 and Vancouver in 2019, Busan in South Korea will finally host the CIMAC Congress from June 12 - 16, 2023. We are all looking forward meeting there for the 30th CIMAC Congress. That is far more than just a phrase. The time of the pandemic has clearly demonstrated how important it is to be able to meet and network with each other, not only via a screen or over the phone but in person. No meeting in front of a computer can ever replace that.

We now are getting ready for Korea and the Congress.

The framework conditions are, admittedly, anything but simple. The pandemic still is not completely over. The military conflict in the middle of Europe has changed the world in many different ways. The ongoing climate change is doing maybe even more so. All over the world, governments, societies, and not least industry are looking for solutions to the current challenges. The topic of climate protection will for certain play a very prominent role at our congress. We all know that the energy transition is globally lagging behind from the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, and that also applies to shipping. This is even more serious as the industry accounts for almost 3 percent of global CO2 emissions and, at the same time, transport volumes at sea are expected to continue to increase. The industry is called upon to act and take concrete measures to reduce CO2 emissions. To do this, we must continue to broaden our knowledge, constantly exchange ideas along the value chain and identify the best possible ways to achieve our goals. A multitude of factors and measures must be linked together. Despite all discussions, I am certain that the internal combustion engine will continue to play a central, indispensable role for shipping on the high seas in the future.

To secure this, concepts and ideas on how fossil fuels can be replaced by CO2-neutral alternatives must be put into practice quickly. LNG is already being used on a large scale; further novel projects based on (green) hydrogen are coming onto the market. Ammonia and methanol are often seen as promising alternatives. The future of shipping most likely lies with “green molecules” If the energy carriers used are produced with green hydrogen, ships will be travelling CO2-neutral. It remains to be seen which of the various technologies will ultimately prevail. The CIMAC congress in any case is the ideal place to discuss such and many other issues in detail – another good reason to attend.

In roughly 3 month from now, the congress will open its doors. We are doing our best to secure that it will be a cutting-edge event. In 2021, we had launched our call for papers, which met with a gratifyingly broad response. We received more than 500 abstract proposals, competing for the nearly 280 presentations at the CIMAC Congress. In the current year, to make sure that we can cover the latest developments, we again issued a call for papers and ask experts to send us their proposals on topics that only recently came up or where they felt that changes needed to be considered. These additional new proposals that arrived by the end of September 2022 and which we are currently reviewing with great care, complement the papers already accepted last year. Thus, I am very sure that we will not only experience a particularly insight-rich, but also a cutting-edge, exciting congress. 

The thematic focus that awaits participants is very broad. Apart from what was already said about the fuels of the future, as in previous congresses, our aim is to cover almost all the challenges the large engine industry is facing. These include novel solutions and new developments as well as the continuous optimization and detailed improvement of existing systems. Hot topics such as digitization and system integration, to name two important areas apart from climate change, must of course not be missed, as they require collaboration on a broader level. 

So, 2023 in Busan, experts from all over the world will meet, gather latest information, follow the keynotes and panel discussions from distinguished industry experts, discuss with each other and search for the best solutions. There will be an exhibition floor again and we will include some new formats such as the pitch stage. Social events and technical tours will further support the excellent networking possibilities in Busan. More than 800 experts from all parts of the world came to Vancouver in 2019. We are confident we will welcome a similarly high number of participants in Busan. Thus, the interest is very high. For me and for many in the large engines industry, participation in the CIMAC Congress is simply a must.

Christoph Rofka is CIMAC Vice President Communication and Senior Vice President – Division President Medium and Low Speed Products, Accelleron

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