Power Storage For A Giant

By Jack Burke22 December 2017

Wärtsilä said it has agreed to retrofit the world’s first energy storage solution on board a large offshore supply vessel.

The North Sea Giant, one of the world’s largest subsea construction vessels, will be fitted with an energy storage system designed to reduce the vessel’s energy consumption, operating costs and exhaust emissions.

The retrofit energy storage system improves the operational efficiency and environmental footprint of the ship, responding to key requirements of Norwegian North Sea Shipping AS, the owner of the vessel. The solution provides power redundancy and increases the responsiveness of vessel operations, Wärtsilä said.

Typically, a vessel with dynamic positioning uses two or more engines simultaneously to secure backup power. This means that the engines’ load run low. By using a hybrid/battery system to provide the needed backup power, the operational engine can be used closer to its optimal load. In addition to the hybrid/battery solution, the agreement signed in August 2017 includes transformers, filters, switchboard, shore connection equipment, upgrades of existing components and commissioning.

“For us is it important to reduce environmental emissions and modernize the vessel to make it more competitive. In addition, with a more efficient vessel, we will save fuel expenses. The estimated reduction in emissions is 5.5 million kg CO2, 30 tons of NOx and 1200 kg SOx per year. After Wärtsilä had retrofitted our ship Atlantic Guardian in 2014, we really understood how much fuel can be saved by improving the vessel’s efficiency. Efficiency also saves time, because you only need to refuel every second or third port visit,” said Hallvard Klepsvik, CEO of North Sea Shipping AS.

The North Sea Giant is a DP3 vessel. The ship is listed in the most advanced category of vessels that apply dynamic positioning, Wärtsilä said. Installation of an energy storage solution into a class DP3 vessel has never been carried out before and requires a redefinition of applicable classification rules. Therefore, Wärtsilä and North Sea Shipping AS are working in close collaboration with the DNV-GL classification society.

North Sea Shipping AS owns, operates and provides management services for advanced offshore supply vessels. Based in Austevoll on the west coast of Norway, the company has extensive experience in offshore shipping.

“Wärtsilä has gained a high competence on hybrid projects on many different vessel types, and has a close relationship with the customers. For this reason, we are able to test new technology on many different types of vessels. We are the first in the world to work with hybrid systems on bigger vessels such as the DP3 classified North Sea Giant, and the project will set a new standard for this type of vessels,” said Cato Esperø, director Sales Norway, Wärtsilä.

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