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ROLLS-ROYCE AND ZF DEVELOP NEW MONITORING SYSTEMS

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 

Rolls-Royce and ZF have joined forces to develop a new electronic monitoring system in order to achieve maximum availability for ships, while keeping fuel consumption and CO2 emissions to a minimum.

The Equipment Health Management System (EHMS) collects and analyses data from MTU engines, ZF transmission systems and other key components on a vessel, taking into account additional factors, such as wind, waves and currents. As of 2021, the system will ensure that fleet managers are able to operate their fleets as efficiently and as environmentally friendly as possible, and will allow them to monitor and align that in real time.

It will be tested by German shipping company Förde Reederei Seetouristik (FRS). “Reliability is what we value most of all,” says Tim Kunstmann, FRS MD. “When you have 680 passengers standing on the St. Pauli Piers in Hamburg waiting to board the Halunder Jet ferry to Helgoland, the reliable ship operation is of top priority”

The 35 knot Halunder Jet ferry (pictured) has four MTU 4000 engines, driving Kamewa waterjets through ZF gearboxes.

FRS, an international business group, has a total of 58 vessels operating ferry services and crew transfer services for offshore wind farms in Europe, North Africa, the Near East and North America, and currently has 40 MTU engines in service. FRS has put its trust in MTU engines since 1997. “The large number of vessels, the variety of vessel types operated and their areas of operation make the FRS fleet particularly interesting for the development project, as it enables us to develop a product designed specifically to meet the demands of a large fleet operator,” said Bartosz Kowalinski, project manager, Power Systems business unit, Rolls-Royce.

The next steps will be to set up an interface from the ZF transmission systems to the EHMS, collect data from the various components of the powertrain on the Halunder Jet, and then to analyse the data obtained. With the aid of agile working methods, interim results are repeatedly examined by the customer in order to determine to what extent they meet requirements. On the basis of this collaborative arrangement, Rolls-Royce and ZF hope to be able to offer maritime customers optimised and integrated propulsion solutions. To date, 70% of MTU’s marine engines have been delivered with ZF transmission systems.

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