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Products & services

ABB supplies complete electrical and propulsion systems for TUI Cruises' newbuilding

ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, has won an order to provide complete power plant and propulsion systems for the first new build ship for German cruise operator TUI Cruises. The ship is being built in Finland at the STX Europe yard in Turku.

TUI Cruises, a joint venture between German tourism company TUI AG and Royal Caribbean International, is increasing its passenger capacity to serve the growing sea vacation market in German-speaking markets. Shipbuilder STX Europe has worked with ABB on numerous marine projects; ABB’s ability to deliver energy efficient systems was a key decision driver in this project. 

ABB’s delivery will help the new ship maximize its onboard energy efficiency while providing a reliable power supply for all equipment and systems, as well as optimize its fuel consumption.

ABB will supply complete power plant and propulsion systems for the new ship, including medium voltage generators, main switchboards, propulsion transformers, propulsion drives, propulsion motors, thruster motors and ring main units for power distribution. ABB will also provide engineering, project management and commissioning services. 

“Our Marine business provides the industry’s most complete offering of systems and services to help any large vessel operate at top levels of energy efficiency, while providing the solid electrical infrastructure that ensures reliable operation of all onboard systems,” said Veli-Matti Reinikkala, head of ABB’s Process Automation division. “ABB’s recent series of project wins in the cruise ship sector underscores the demand for state-of-the-art solutions and supporting services that help these ships operate at peak efficiency over their entire lifecycle.”

Deliveries for the TUI ship are scheduled to start in spring 2013, with commissioning scheduled for early 2014.

VIKING achieves an eight year track record of constant growth

Global success in the crucial offshore market and around-the-world export growth are behind yet another solid financial report from fast-expanding VIKING Life-Saving Equipment, which joins a long list of Danish exporters that are defying today’s economic difficulties.

ANNUAL ACCOUNTS: In 2011, VIKING Life-Saving Equipment A/S, global manufacturer of safety equipment for the maritime, offshore and fire industries, continued its seemingly unstoppable and increasingly global expansion, lifting turnover and profits, and creating more than 200 new jobs.

Eight years of solid growth in a market that can be as turbulent as the seas for which its products are designed. That’s the glowing picture for the privately owned, Esbjerg-based company, which has moved from humble beginnings as a manufacturer of liferafts to its position today as the leading global solution provider of marine safety products and services.

Despite difficult market conditions, VIKING managed to achieve a record turnover of DKK 1.442 billion, representing an increase of some 14% in comparison with 2010. Operating profit was DKK 120.6 million, up 23% on 2010. The average number of employees climbed from 1397 in 2010 to 1557 for the 2011 fiscal year, with year-end staff numbers at 1646.

The 2011 market was influenced by increasing competition, accompanied by several consolidations. Markets were also affected by the European debt crisis. Pressure was particularly high in the Southern European market, traditionally a stronghold of the maritime industry. Reductions were felt, too, in the number of newbuilds, although this was countered by growth in the overall number of vessels in service and firm demand for replacement and servicing – both of which are key competencies for VIKING. 

Henrik Uhd Christensen, CEO of VIKING, points out “VIKING’s controlled diversification within the safety industry has allowed us to adjust appropriately to changing market conditions. It is our combination of a high quality product portfolio, a unique network and customized solutions that is difficult for our competitors to match.”

With the focus on being close to customers, the company is pursuing increased globalization via network expansion in all aspects of its operations. During 2011, for example, new locations and stock points were established at Port Klang, Malaysia; Kaohsiung, Taiwan; Cairo, Port Suez and Alexandria, Egypt; Mersin, Turkey; Split, Croatia; Brest, France; Santos, Brazil and Colon, Panama. In addition to network expansion, VIKING has developed several unique products and services that raise safety standards, particularly for the offshore market. 

In recent years, much of the growth in the company’s service revenues has been provided by VIKING’s Shipowner Agreements: “Given today’s volatile markets, our customers are extremely keen on servicing contracts that help them to predict the costs of servicing their safety equipment without jeopardizing any important parameters. Development in these agreements during 2012 will bolster the phenomenal success we’ve had with our Shipowner Agreements to date. VIKING’s safety competence and 50 years of experience combined with the unique safety network and customized solutions simply make us a stronger global partner,” says VIKING CEO, Henrik Uhd Christensen. 

Coping with such rapid and constant growth calls for on-going adjustments to the company’s infrastructure – while sticking to the mission and values whose essence have made VIKING what it is today. In 2010, VIKING strengthened its internal organization, arranging global sales and services into six regions and relocating several of its production facilities. It also made an important strategic acquisition, acquiring former competitor HYGRAPHA Safety at Sea GmbH & Co. According to the company’s management, the 2010 restructuring has strongly supported the 2011 results.

While today’s market conditions could reasonably be expected to lead to a reduction in forecasted results for 2012, VIKING maintains a positive outlook, with growth continuing to be encouraged by positive developments in BRIC countries, in particular, assisted by further globalization and a strong offering in the all-important offshore sector.

Wärtsilä signs long-term service agreement with Prestige Cruise Holdings

Wärtsilä, the marine industry's leading solutions and services provider, has signed a five-year service agreement with US-based Prestige Cruise Holdings, Inc. (Prestige), the parent company of Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

The long-term service agreement covers six vessels, a total of 27 Wärtsilä engines, and has the option to include further vessels in the future. The agreement facilitates the projection of costs associated with the maintenance of Prestige's cruise fleet, while also minimizing the downtime during routine maintenance and overhauls. The agreement provides a broad scope of services, including maintenance planning, spare parts supply, training, technical surveys, condition monitoring, and workshop services.

New type of agreement

The tailor-made agreement is one of the most comprehensive yet for the cruise industry. The depth and scope of the agreement cover pro-active planning by both companies working in co-operation. It involves dedicated teams from both parties, which will work closely together to ensure the optimal performance of the Prestige fleet.

"Wärtsilä's willingness to assume a large part of the service and logistics activities, while offering a streamlined cost structure, provides the peace of mind that comes with knowing that the quality is the very best," says Robin Lindsay, Executive Vice President, Vessel Operations, Prestige Cruise Holdings.

"We are very excited about this agreement that positions Prestige and Wärtsilä on a path for success in a partnership for continuous improvement," says Kourtney Dever, Account Manager, Wärtsilä North America, Inc.

"The premise of the partnership is based on each company focusing on their area of expertise, while fully co-operating with each other to ensure maximum efficiency. The agreement is extremely comprehensive and is one that extends beyond the traditional standard in the marketplace," states Tomas Hakala, Vice President Wärtsilä Services, Americas.

Wärtsilä Services - the industry's most extensive service network

Wärtsilä Services is one of the three Wärtsilä's businesses alongside Ship Power and Power Plants. Wärtsilä Services offers services to both the global marine and energy markets and operates the most extensive service network in the industry. The company's broad portfolio includes environmental services and solutions, the servicing of engines, propulsion systems, electrical and automation systems and boilers, as well as field services and spare parts. It also covers upgrades and conversions, long-term agreements for engine and propulsion systems, as well as training services. Wärtsilä Services is at the forefront in developing new service concepts to meet customer needs for optimal operational efficiency. Wärtsilä Services operates some 70 fully owned workshops and employs over 11,000 service professionals.

Roxtec acquires Sleev-It Fire Systems LTd

Roxtec International AB, world leader in modular pipe and cable penetration sealing systems, has acquired Sleev-It Fire Systems Ltd of the United Kingdom. The acquisition of Sleev-It will enhance the Roxtec line of sealing products by providing shipyards a lightweight firestop for plastic pipes. Sleev-It marine penetration seals expand the already diverse product offerings of Roxtec for fire-sealing in A & B fire-rated sections.

Sleev-It Fire Systems Ltd will continue to operate under its current name.

Through the integration of Sleev-It, we have added light-weight fire penetration seals to our product portfolio, says Francesco Solzi, Marine Segment Manager of Roxtec. We are able to offer fire collars and other solutions for plastic pipes to become more complete as a provider of sealing solutions. We can help shipyards with new builds as well as retrofit projects.

Roxtec seals and fire collars cover the needs of the entire ship, from below the waterline up to the passengers' cabins. When plastic pipe and cable systems penetrate A and B class divisions, each penetration needs to be protected in order to maintain the integrity of each division at the point of penetration. The SLEEV-IT marine penetration seal can be used to maintain integrity by sealing off the penetration in the division and filling the void left by the plastic pipes that have either burnt or melted away.

Designed for simplicity

Simplicity in design means that the SLEEV-IT marine penetration seals are an ideal substitute for more complex options when using plastic pipes in marine applications, or when steel or copper pipes are being replaced by plastic and/or multilayer alternatives. The easy installation of the SLEEV-IT marine penetration seal provides considerable retro-fit capabilities which benefit many ship yards and ship owners by offering a very cost efficient, time effective and clean process which minimizes disruptions either at sea, or in dry dock when repairs are being carried out.

Only a single SLEEV-IT marine penetration seal is needed for each penetration, thereby reducing the quantity of product needed. Various size collars are produced to fit the actual penetration being protected. SLEEV-IT marine penetration seals can be fitted on either side of the deck or bulkhead (see diagram), thereby providing optimum flexibility of space and location. Among the many other benefits of SLEEVE-IT are: significantly reduced weight, reduction of labor costs due to easy installation, no need for costly insulation, plus reduced maintenance made possible because all SLEEV-IT marine penetration seals have a stainless steel casing or are powder coated to avoid damage from corrosion.

A few examples of ships where SLEEV-IT marine penetration seals have been installed are: Queen Elizabeth (Cunard) , Azura (P&O), Oasis of the Seas (RCCL), Carnival Destiny (Carnival), Norwegian Dawn (NCL).

Wärtsilä launches medium voltage power drive

Wärtsilä, the marine industry's leading systems integrator and solutions provider, says it has launched its new Medium Voltage Power Drive. The product will enable the delivery of electro and automation systems for large, electric propulsion vessels, such as drilling rigs and tankers, large passenger and cruise ships, various offshore service vessels, as well as compressors and pumps for the oil & gas industry. The addition of this medium voltage unit to the low voltage power drive range that Wärtsilä has offered since 2005 further enhances the company's total solutions offering to the shipping industry.

 Wärtsilä's new Medium Voltage Power drive is especially designed for marine applications, while the previous units in this range were first developed for land-based applications. It has been developed with special attention paid to personnel safety, while the modular design allows easy installation and maintenance. With the new power drive, Wärtsilä will be able to offer medium voltage Low Loss Concept (LLC) solutions with increased efficiency and redundancy, which in turn leads to lower fuel consumption and reduced operating costs. It can also enable the possibility of having less power installed, thus benefiting customers by reducing both capital and operational expenditures.

 Development work began in 2009, and has been carried out at Wärtsilä's R&D facilities in Norway. Pilot sales are scheduled to begin this year, with an internal pilot to be installed in early 2013 and an external pilot later in that year. The Wärtsilä Medium Voltage Power Drive is based on press-pack IGBT (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor) technology with 3-level PWM inverter control. The modular design has large overload capacity, integrated gate driver boards, and a plug-in bus bar connection.

The unit can be used as a control device in various marine propulsion and thrusters applications, as well as in large fans, pumps, compressors and hoists. Together with Wärtsilä's patented Low Loss Concept, the introduction of this next generation of medium voltage power drives brings increased efficiency and redundancy to the larger marine electric propulsion market. It also has the added benefit of reduced weight and space requirements.

"This product launch emphasises once again Wärtsilä's unique position as a total solutions provider to the marine industry. The new power drive is the most compact in terms of space and weight on the market, while the technology is more advanced than anything else currently being offered to the shipping sector. It is one more step in our continued efforts to shorten the route to lower costs and increased profits for our customers," says Juhani Hupli, Vice President, Wärtsilä Ship Power, Technology.