CO2 re-use during maintenance of fixed fire extinguishing systems

In 2021, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) introduced a set of revised guidelines for the maintenance and inspections of fixed carbon dioxide fire extinguishing systems on vessels.

The amendments represent a significant increase in the hydrostatic test regime for CO2 cylinders. While 10% of the total number of CO2 cylinders must still be tested at the 10-year inspection, the 20 year test regime has been expanded from testing another 10% to testing all cylinders not tested so far (90%). All cylinders (100%) are to be tested at every 10-year interval thereafter.

Besides increased transportation of equipment and cylinders between vessels and service stations, the new guidelines have resulted in an increased use of CO2 as the cylinders have traditionally been emptied during service. 

As one cylinder holds 45 kg CO2 and an average ship system contains 150 cylinders, 1120 service jobs a year will lead to a total CO2 reduction of 7560 tons of CO2.


To counter this negative environmental impact imposed by regulators, VIKING is currently testing a brand new system for storing and reusing CO2 during the service of fixed marine fire systems. Besides equipment for storing CO2, the pilot project includes optimised maintenance processes, enhanced planning capacity, potential water recycling as well as processes for collecting best practices and creating consistency throughout the global network of VIKING service stations while also taking into consideration local law. 

It is VIKING’s expectation that the recycling of CO2 and the improved maintenance processes will significantly reduce the overall carbon footprint of fire extinguishing systems on vessels in the coming years.

VIKING sustainability report 2023

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