ABB will install an Onboard DC Grid for power distribution on a new Louis Dreyfus Armateurs wind farm service operation vessel (SOV) designed by Salt Ship Design and to be built by Cemre Shipyard in Turkey. The hybrid system, called the power and energy management system (PEMS), will enable the cost-efficient integration of batteries and energy storage; the use of fewer running generators resulting in less maintenance and better fuel consumption in the long term without any compromises on safety. It is also more efficient in the long-term as ship engines reduce running hours overall and have a higher engine load.
Previously installed on a wide range of vessels that include ferries, offshore support vessels, and a cable layer, the Onboard DC Grid will integrate two sets of batteries used for spinning reserve and peak shaving. In contrast to traditional AC systems where generators run at fixed maximum speed irrespective of power demand, here the power system is controlled by integrated PEMS and the generators run at variable speeds to decrease engine wear and tear, increase fuel efficiency at lower loads, and maximise safety and efficiency.
As John Olav Lindtjørn, global product manager for Onboard DC Grid at ABB Marine & Ports Power notes, while the energy storage system can work as a sole energy source, in this case it is being deployed as a supporting element for the main engine. Therefore, battery power can cover peaks during operation instead of starting another engine, and it can also act as a backup for running generators, reducing the need to run spare generator capacity. The crew will also benefit by a decrease in vibrations.
Operating off four wind farms off the German coast, the SOV will enable the maintenance of the turbines by wind farm technicians.