Problem solving is central to the role of a systems integrator in developing a new battery-hybrid vessel
Speaking at Riviera’s Marine Hybrid & Electric Conference in Bergen, Norway, Norwegian Electric Systems (NES) senior vice president Stein Ruben Larsen said, “Some shipyards don’t know what a systems integrator does. Some shipyards don’t know battery systems.”
Part of the Havyard Group, NES has experience with about 25 vessels on order or in operation with hybrid battery systems, totalling 60 MW. Among the vessel types are OSVs, container ships and ferries.
“We solve a problem or challenge for our clients, whether it is an operator or a shipyard,” said Mr Larsen. “Most of that comes from listening to them and then working closely with the ship designer. It sounds simple, but it isn’t.”
Mr Larsen discussed developing the Eco Bulker, a new low- or zero-emissions shortsea dry cargo vessel for Bergen-based Misje Rederi. The owner of 14 dry cargo vessels in the range of 4,000 to 5,000 dwt, Misje Rederi was looking to renew its fleet. Before committing to a newbuild, however, Misje Rederi was concerned with meeting future emissions regulations and the cost of constructing a new vessel, explained Mr Larsen.
To address those concerns, Mr Larsen pointed out that a systems integrator has to have deep knowledge and insight into regulations, technology and the challenges that vessel operators are facing. “Our people are our biggest resource,” he said. He also pointed out that a systems integrator needs to ask the right questions and get the right answers. “What is your ship going to do and for how long? How many port calls will it make? What are the requirements?” said Mr Larsen.
Working with naval architect and marine engineering firm Marine Design & Consulting, NES has developed the Eco Bulker design. The vessel project, which won funding support from Innovation Norway, is now out for bids at shipyards.