Following Kongsberg Maritime’s acquisition and integration of the former Rolls-Royce Commercial Marine in 2019, the expertise of both former companies has been utilised to develop solutions for the integration of bridge, control and propulsion systems. With the maritime industry’s increasing desire to reduce its environmental footprint, Kongsberg Maritime is well positioned to deliver integrated products and systems that meet this demand for greater efficiency and sustainability.
“With the increasing focus on hybrid electrical systems, both for electrical and mechanical propulsion, Kongsberg Maritime has established a battery factory and we now make our own digital switchboards,” explains Roger Trinterud, sales director at Kongsberg Maritime. “We have also set up an energy lab where we have generators set, hydrogen fuel cells and many types of batteries to test and refine control strategies.”
This investment in innovative technologies has led to the development of Kongsberg Maritime’s energy control systems, which consist of mixing different energy producers, connecting them to a switchboard and distributing the energy to wherever needs it on board. “When you include knowledge about the yacht operational profile, then you can also control the propulsion, heating, ventilation, etc. and the system can divide the energy between the producers more effectively,” continues Trinterud. “This means it can ramp up energy production while keeping the engines running in the most efficient range and thereby using a battery or other energy storage to optimise the whole energy chain.”
To further increase on-board efficiency, Kongsberg Maritime is now looking into creating a better link between the bridge system and the energy control system.
To further increase on-board efficiency, Kongsberg Maritime is now looking into creating a better link between the bridge system and the energy control system. “If the energy producers know how much energy the vessel is going to need in the near future, by linking in time of arrival from the autopilot and the speed that needs to be maintained, then you can decrease the overall energy used, as well as decrease noise and vibration to improve general comfort on board,” adds Trinterud. “Here we are talking about technology that the offshore industry uses for staying in position, but turning it into a completely new energy and comfort tool for yachts.”
For vessels with electric propulsion systems, Kongsberg Maritime also recommends the use of Azimuth propulsors, such as its Elegance POD and AziPull, where the propeller and rudder is one unit and can turn 360 degrees around itself. As well as increased manoeuvrability with less power, less interior volume is required for the propulsion system and there is increased flexibility with the positioning of the engine room.
Kongsberg Maritime’s latest development is an advanced manoeuvering systems, having recently worked with two Norwegian ferries to develop an automated docking system. “This involved taking the software from our dynamic positioning system and turning it into a system that moves the vessel automatically, in the best way possible, from one location to another,” says Trinterud. “This means that the system can find the perfect parking approach and execute it automatically.” With the majority of hardware and software in place to integrate such a system on board a superyacht, Kongsberg Maritime hopes to see the demand for the technology from its yachting clients soon.
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