The Information exchange

01 Jul 2004

Indicative of the research, development work and general progress of technology and related issues, The MotorShip was inundated with proposals for papers ahead of this year?s Marine Propulsion Conference. Such was the interest in presenting a paper at the 26th annual event that the number of papers accepted was raised from the usual maximum of 20 to 24 and even then many had to be turned away only to try again next year.
The papers that were accepted for the conference, held at the Passenger Terminal Amsterdam at the end of April, were organized into the six themed sessions designed to cover topical issues and the most relevant technology.
On the day the conference was expertly chaired by the charismatic Lennart Neut ? known to many as a current Board member of the Royal Netherlands Society of Professionals in Shipping Technology and to others as the former chief of marketing at Wärtsilä. His blend of wit combined with his enthusiasm and grasp of technology ensured that proceedings went according to plan and there was never a dull moment.
The conference began with a keynote speech from Martin Bloem, Managing Director of the Holland Marine Equipment association, which supported the event. He spoke of how new rules for the environment are placing more demands on new technology and the need for more cooperation between those supplying the solutions and even the creation of a European Propulsion Platform.
It was a good way to kick off the event as the first session on Propulsion, by Head of the Machinery Section at Det Norske Veritas, Medhat Bahgat, focused on what extent class can influence the marine propulsion industry. As well as clearly defining the role of class, Bahgat reiterated the importance of cooperation, particularly between owners, class and manufacturers.
The second paper in the Propulsion session was from Per Arén of the Rolls-Royce Hydroynamic Research Centre and covered a full-scale propeller observation used to identify cavitation phenomenon in an Ulstien Aquamaster Contaz thruster unit. The outcome of the observation and tests concluded that the cavition which initially caused erosion to the propellers could be avoided if a new larger head box was installed to help stabalise flow.
Next followed presentations on installation solutions for various azimuthing propulsion systems for diesel-electric ships from Schottel and new trends in CPP propulsion from MAN B&W, both of which focused on matching technology to application. The final presentation in the session was from Ocean Venture seals and dealt with the challenging application of outboard seals for lubricated propeller shafts.
The second session on the opening day was titled "Electric Ship" . Diesel-electric propulsion was the subject of two of the papers, with diesel-electric propulsion dedicated to tankers from Alstom Power Conversion sector and extreme low-noise diesel-electric propulsion system for the research vessel Celtic Explorer from Bakker Sliedrecht. The third paper in this session was from Kimmo von Weissenberg of Vacon Group and concentrated on frequency converters in electrical propulsion, particularly their development and application.
Diesel power was the general theme for the final session of day one and opened with a presentation on how Exxon Mobil?s Feedrate Optimisation programme can add significant value to the overall lubricant-related operating cost of a ship. Obviously, the big two engine manufacturers were also on hand with presentations on how common-rail fuel injection is now the industry standard for diesel engines (Wärtsilä) and how the latest two-stroke engine control technology copes with diverse propulsion demands (MAN B&W Diesel).
The final session rounded off with a paper from Märkisches Werk GmbH, Halver (MWH) on the typical wear mechanisms of two-stroke exhaust valves and the benefits of the remanufacturing procedure Nimalike. Delegates were then free to discuss the day?s proceeding, make the most of the networking opportunity or simply relax at The MotorShip cocktail party.
The second day of the conference opened with several case studies. Presenting the first paper of the day was Chris Holland from Lloyd?s Register who explained the importance of optimizing maintenance procedures to economically maximize safety and reliability. Next was a presentation on how ship emissions impact the chemical composition of the atmosphere and climate from Dr Veronkia Eyring, head of the Junior Research group SeaKLIM. With such atmospheric studies helping policy makers to develop future reduction strategies, this paper was met with much interest. Frédérick Gaudeaux of Bureau Veritas concluded the session with a presentation on how to manage ship equipment and machinery for life and how BV?s VeriSTAR-Machinery assesses and optimizes the adequacy between design and maintainence in terms of risk.
After morning coffee was a session on Innovation and Realisation with an opening paper on efficient and environmentally friendly machinery systems for LNG carriers by Barend Thijssen of Wärtsilä. This presentation made a strong case for dual-fuel engines in combination with an electric propulsion system as the best alternative to steam turbines for LNG carrier propulsion.
Professor Jerzy Listewnik of the Maritime University in Szczecin, Poland next compared the technical and economical attributes of two engines of equal cylinder size but different working power (a medium-speed Wärtsilä 46 and a MAN B&W slow-speed S46MC-C)? a risky business with representatives of both manufacturers being present! This was followed by another comparative study, this time from Dr Keijiro Tayama from Japan Internal Combustion Engine Federation (JICEF) on onboard continuous NOx monitoring experience on three vessels with heavy fuel.

Emission challenge
The session ended with a focused look at an approach to constrained hydrodynamic optimization of ships from Martin Hoekstra from the Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN).
The final session of the conference dealt with the management of fuel and oil. First up to the podium was Dr George Lustegarten who explained how Caterpillar?s ACERT technology is meeting the marine emissions challenge. Next was Brian Smith from Quality Monitoring Instruments who spoke of the dangers of oil mist and how detection can prevent engine failure, as well as benefit health and safety.
With the sulphur content caps being a current issue, Denis Lancon from the TOTAL research center, France, then explained how recent two-stroke cylinder lubrication field trials could help cope with the impact of changing fuel.
Refreshed by an afternoon coffee break, delegates were next given an insight into the findings of a three-year research project into monitoring lubricant condition with regard to providing a safe engine room environment. Last, but by no means least, Gunnar Astrom of Alfa Laval presented a paper that focused on how a new standard makes it possible to compare performance of different centrifugal separators on equal terms and ultimately help ensure the quality bunkered fuel oils.
Overall the 26th conference?s busy programme dealt with a range of topical issue, provided an insight into current research and technologies, and prompted debate. Opportunities to share views and opinions and ask questions of authorities in certain fields were also exploited to the full. Most importantly, the interest shown and the number of suggestions forthcoming for future topics of debate mean that the 2005 event cannot be too soon in coming.
l To purchase the 2004 conference papers please contact Karen Tolley on tel: +44 (0)1322 611286 or e-mail:

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