The device will check whether ships sailing in the Danish waters comply with the 0.1% limit set in the Sulphur Emission Control Area.
By entering a ship's exhaust gas plume, the drone, fitted with a so-called 'sniffer', can register the amount of sulphur in the bunker. These data are then immediately available to Danish authorities who can follow up if the vessel doesn't comply with the requirements.
The drone, provided by the European Maritime Safety Agency, performed its first mission on 11 April.
"The project will contribute to a more efficient enforcement of the sulphur rules, thereby ensuring fair competition for shipping companies and less pollution from ships. In Denmark, the Danish Environmental Protection Agency is responsible for enforcing the sulphur rules, and the Danish Maritime Authority supports this work through ship inspections in Danish ports and now also with drone monitoring," a press release from the Danish Maritime Authority explained.
Photo: European Maritime Safety Agency