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Marine Electronics


September 2014 Issue

US Coast Guard Conducts Arctic Technology Evaluation
A team of scientists from the Coast Guard Research and Development Center (RDC) departed from Seward, Alaska, for a technology evaluation in the Arctic aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy in August. The RDC is leading a multiagency team to support Arctic Shield 2014, a 17th Coast Guard District initiative. The purpose of their month-long evaluation is to improve Coast Guard capabilities in the Arctic region, specifically in the areas of boat operations, communications, navigational safety and oil spill response.

The RDC will collaborate with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory to assess improvements made to Coast Guard boats for enhanced capability in a cold-weather environment. U.S. Northern Command and its contractor, Lockheed Martin Corp. (Bethesda, Maryland), will help the RDC assess Mobile User Objective System satellite coverage at high latitudes. Marine Exchange of Alaska will provide critical Automatic Identification System infrastructure to help the Coast Guard transmit weather, ice and safety zone information to mariners through a cooperative research and development agreement.

NOAA, the National Science Foundation, the National Ice Center, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, the University of Cambridge (U.K.) and the University of Washington’s Applied Physics Laboratory will provide personnel, unmanned technologies and resources to help the RDC better understand how a simulated oil spill moves in the water near the ice edge over a 48-hour period. Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation will have an observer aboard for this effort as well.

Companies Collaborate to Make Engine Analysis Automatic
ClassNK (Tokyo, Japan) will participate in a joint project with Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. (Tokyo) and MES Technoservice Co. Ltd. (Tamano, Japan). ClassNK will support research into the development of condition-based engine monitoring systems for the Mitsui MAN B&W engine. The developed systems will assist in the early detection of abnormalities in electronically controlled diesel engines in ships.

In recent years, vessels are increasingly being equipped with more fuel-efficient electronically controlled diesel engines, allowing ship operators to obtain large amounts of sensor data in comparison with conventional mechanical engines. This means it becomes the responsibility of the ship operators to monitor and assess such sensor data, and more sensor data lead to the increase of workloads at shipping companies.

The aim of this joint project is to discover ways to eliminate workloads by creating a system that automatically analyzes the electronically controlled engine’s sensor data for performance diagnoses, to prevent system failures, and to extend the frequency of overhaul intervals. With this system, both safe operation of the ship and a reduction in lifecycle costs can be realized.

This project is scheduled to continue until March 2016.

Omer 9 Wins International Sub Races in Europe
The week-long European International Submarine Races organized by the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science & Technology (IMarEST) and hosted by QinetiQ in its Ocean Basin at Haslar, England, resulted in Omer 9 from École de Technologies Supérieure Montreal in Canada winning this event for the second time.

Archimède from École Polytechnique de Montreal was the runner-up. Mayflower from the University of Plymouth in the U.K. finished third overall and won the most Reliable Boat Award.

Omer 9 also won the Agility/Endurance Award for completing two laps of the course with the fastest time and no faults, and the greatest speed between timed gates, reaching 7.1 knots.

The human-powered races, held in July, involved pilots as the sole source of propulsion driving the submarines, which they designed and built, by pedaling fast in scuba gear underwater. Ten teams from universities on three continents took part in the biennial races.

Wärtsilä to Co-Design New Ferry for Gulf of Bothnia
Wärtsilä (Helsinki, Finland) has been selected as the partner for designing a new ferry as part of the Midway Alignment of the Bothnian Corridor project. The scope of the design work will be both initial and basic design. The ferry is designed for sailing between Vaasa in Finland and Umeå in Sweden across the Gulf of Bothnia in the Baltic Sea. The new vessel is required to be innovative, efficient and environmentally sound. The design will consider the need for operational flexibility since the transport demands on this route vary seasonally. The demand for cargo transports is quite stable in the course of the year, while passenger traffic peaks during the summer, therefore flexibility will be important in the concept.

During peak periods, the ferry will run to a tighter schedule than is required at other times, when the speed can be reduced to save fuel costs. Ice conditions during winter months can be quite severe, and the design work also needs to consider the operations during harsh winters.

The ship design phase is scheduled to be finalized by the end of the second quarter in 2015.

SeaKing Electrical Invests in ETAP Software for Defense Applications
SeaKing Electrical (Birkenhead, England) has invested in new high-impact electrical engineering software used in nuclear and military sectors. The ETAP software supports the design, simulation, operation and automation of industrial power systems, and also helps to drive maximum levels of reliability, safety and energy efficiency across power infrastructure. ETAP is qualified for use in mission-critical operations. ETAP provides a set of core tools, embedded analysis modules and engineering libraries. It is used by the U.K. Ministry of Defence and the U.S. Navy for short-circuit calculations and ARC Flash analysis on power generation, switchboards and downstream electrical distribution systems. The software can also provide modeling of circuit breaker discrimination.


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