When diesel generators run for prolonged periods at low speeds or loads, carbon build-up and internal glazing can affect the generator. This leads to serious operational problems such as decreased reliability and increased running costs.
In addition, these issues set off a chain reaction that will result in the generator belching out smoke. If the problem remains unresolved, the generator will eventually fail to start at all and the owner will have to buy a new one.
Vessel owners must maintain their generator properly by regularly bringing it up to full load. To help, UK-based Cressall is conducting research into using its EV2 resistors to maintain and test generators on yachts. The EV2 can be used as a dummy load resistor, replicating a full electrical load on the vessel’s generator.
One advantage of using the EV2 is that it will dissipate the energy from the generator as heat into the cooling water. This can be used to heat water for the hot water tank. The resistor is lighter and smaller than some new methods used to maintain generators, which involve switchgear, an inverter, controls and large additional batteries. Furthermore, the EV2 is perfectly suited to marine applications in which moisture, humidity and salt pose problems to electrical devices that are not built for such an environment. The resistor has a rugged silicone rubber outer skin, giving the EV2 an ingress protection of IP56. This means that even powerful jets of water cannot penetrate the device.