Cost-effective solutions help keep customers satisfied
Shiprepair & Maintenance: 3rd Quarter 2017
The leading marine engine manufacturer, MAN Diesel & Turbo (MDT), and its MAN PrimeServ aftersales division, are working on a number of new solutions to optimise repair and maintenance processes to the benefit of its customers. One option currently being worked on, for example, is a time between overhaul (TBO) extension, as more customers express interest in extending maintenance intervals, to keep vessels in operation until the next planned drydock. This is only being offered to specific customers for the time being, most recently to a Danish offshore operator.
According to Denis Pissarski, strategic marketing manager, MAN PrimeServ: “Under certain conditions, covering fuel oil quality, operating conditions, maintenance procedures, and close cooperation between the customer and our technical staff beforehand, we are able to grant an extension of the planned maintenance interval. Nonetheless, there will be no standard solution; in order to change the maintenance interval, we need to evaluate each plant individually.”
In an effort to help customers go through drydocking without any unforeseen findings, MDT is now offering customers a Pre-docking Inspection (PDI). This comprises a thorough inspection of the engine and a cylinder liner measurement six to eight months prior to drydocking. Based on the inspection, MDT is able to provide recommendations based on actual engine conditions, giving the customers valuable information on the scope of the work needed, and helping ensure the correct spare parts are ready for the planned drydocking.
Additionally, MDT has introduced a new approach towards the exchange of speed governors, sending new speed governors to customers, on condition that the old one is returned. The company has also introduced a new armouring system for engine valves on its 48/60 range. The aim is to reduce servicing intervals, as the updated valves are designed to run for 36,000 hours without any inspection in-between.
In a significant development for the group’s engine repair operations, in June this year the MDT subsidiary, Metalock Denmark, which specialises in on-site repair solutions for 2 and 4-stroke diesel engines, changed its name to On-site Recovery, at the same time as being incorporated into MAN PrimeServ.
“This initiative opens up the possibility to use the worldwide MAN PrimeServ network, and MDT regional offices, to reach further out into the market with the On-Site Recovery service, taking it into closer proximity with customers,” says Stig Holm, head of MAN PrimeServe On-Site Recovery.
MAN PrimeServ On-site Recovery offers a novel repair method to vessel owners with 2-stroke engines, through which the main bearing saddle can be machined without removing the crankshaft from the engine. It claims to be the only company currently able to carry out this process. This repair method was recently carried out on a vessel in Indonesia with a type 6S70MC-C8 engine and resulted in a significantly reduced down time for the vessel. “Conventional repairs of this kind require removing of the crankshaft and would take from four to six months. In comparison, with On-site Recovery’s method the repair can be done in only six to eight weeks from start to finish,” suggests Holm.
To support the further expansion of the aftersales business, the network of MAN PrimeServ workshops is currently being further strengthened. The company has upgraded its existing workshops in Chile and Italy recently and has also opened new workshops in Karachi, Dhaka, Fujairah and Peru. This takes the network to 122 service hubs, strengthening MAN PrimeServ’s market leading position in the repair and maintenance of marine diesel engines.
To supplement these permanent facilities, MAN PrimeServ is investing in a new containerised mobile workshop. The container is being equipped with hydraulic tools and a work bench, and can be shipped worldwide to better serve customers on-site. Pissarski adds: “We are continuously developing the technical competencies of our service staff worldwide through our PrimeServ Academies. Our current focus is on South America, Asia and the Middle East, where we are investing in our training capabilities to meet demanding quality standards.”
Putting know-how into practice, MAN PrimeServ has carried out several notable engine repair projects in recent times. These include the exchange of a crankshaft of a 28/33D engine belonging to the Dutch Navy vessel, Holland. “This job was so complex that our Benelux team was even decorated with a medal by the Dutch Navy to honour the timely and effective execution,” states Pissarski. Another complex job carried out by the company this year involved a crankshaft repair on a Scandinavian reefer ship, where technical experts from PrimeServ Augsburg and Metalock Denmark teamed up to repair the crankshaft on site.
MAN Primeserv points out that, as well as such major repair jobs, it is seeing a growing demand for engine retrofits. This has prompted MAN PrimeServ to double the size of its in-house retrofit project team, and establish a dedicated engineering department to develop better retrofit solutions.
The focus on retrofit capability seems to be paying off. Wessels Reederei, a German shipping company, has contracted the company to retrofit the 8L48/60B main engine of its 1000 TEU containership Wes Amelie to dual-fuel operation. The MAN 8L51/60DF, which is being converted from the MAN 8L48/60B in Wes Amelie ’s case, is a highly environmentally-friendly engine, that is expected to help reduce emissions of sulphur oxide by over 99%, nitrogen oxide by approximately 90%, and carbon dioxide by up to 20%.
In another notable retrofit project, TOTE Maritime Alaska has contracted MAN PrimeServ to convert its Orca Class ships, North Star and Midnight Sun, to run on LNG. These are currently equipped with 4 x 58/64 MAN engines and will be converted to 58/64 Retrofit engines. The process of converting the ships will begin in December 2017 and is expected to be completed by mid- 2021. In order to convert both ships, each will undergo two, eight-week drydock periods which will take place over the next four winters.
“The conversion of the well-established 58/64 engine to the 58/64 Retrofit engine is a major milestone for us,” says Pissarski. “It is a huge project, involving engineering, construction design, test bed and aftersales. To meet the customer’s requirements we developed a solution based on the well- proven 51/60DF Retrofit, and the converted engine will become ‘as new’, since most of the parts will be exchanged. The investment will be a huge benefit to the customer, as all new emission standards can be met with this retrofit.”
MAN PrimeServ also reports that its new 32/40 upgrade is gaining in popularity as a retrofit, particularly in respect to gensets. Through this solution, this engine type can be converted to a 32/40DF light engine, with fuel sharing.
Furthermore, MAN PrimeServ has developed a number of solutions to upgrade automation systems on older 32/40 engines. “While the engines are still mechanically flawless, the old electronic engine automation system may cause problems. This upgrade to our well-proven Safety and Control System One engine, the so-called SaCoSone, re-establishes safe and reliable operation and ensures long-term availability of spare parts and service options,” says Pissarski.
The company is also promoting an Oil Mist Detector retrofit, offering a sensor that can quickly detect oil mist in the crankcase and explosive conditions. This option, which prevents severe damage to major engine components and improves operational safety, is available for all 4-stroke engines. In addition, MAN PrimeServ is marketing SOLAS 220, which can bring older engines that do not conform to SOLAS into a condition that is compliant.
Alongside growing volumes of retrofit work, another significant market trend highlighted by MAN PrimeServ is the demand for long-term service agreements from shipping company customers. According to Pissarski, “In the last year we have secured more than ten long-term service contracts and we see especially high levels of interest from cruise liners and LNG carriers in long-term agreements.”