ABB has released third-party verification that its Onboard DC Grid helps vessels reduce their fuel consumption up to 27 percent.
ABB’s Onboard DC Grid distributes power through a single DC circuit, which the company says provides power savings while also improving the safety and redundancy compared with traditional AC systems. The Onboard DC Grid also facilitates use of batteries and other energy storage devices, which further improves energy efficiency and cuts emissions.
The measurements and tests, conducted by Pon Power in collaboration with ABB on Myklebusthaug Offshore’s platform supply vessel Dina Star, are the first documented results from a vessel outfitted with ABB’s Onboard DC Grid.
The tests also measured fuel consumption in dynamic positioning operations during challenging weather conditions, identifying fuel savings of 14 percent. Dynamic positioning operations, where computers automatically maintain a vessel’s position and heading, account for a considerable portion of a typical offshore vessel’s operational profile.
In addition to fuel consumption, Pon Power and ABB measured Onboard DC Grid’s effect on engine room noise levels. Tests showed 30 percent noise reduction, contributing to improved working conditions aboard the vessel.
Dina Star is powered by four Caterpillar 3516 engines in combination with a C32 in a variable speed application.
Veli–Matti Reinikkala, head of ABB’s Process Automation division, says the Onboard DC Grid provides a competitive advantage to ship owners operating a wide range of ship types from offshore vessels to ferries and yachts seeking to increase fuel efficiency and reduce emissions.
The electric and hybrid marine market will increase from $2.6 billion in 2013 to more than $7.3 billion by 2024, according to an IDTechEx report published last month.