For our next visit, we dropped anchor in Hamburg Port. Our destination: the LNG hybrid barge “Hummel” on the Blohm & Voss shipyard. The “Hummel” is a floating liquid gas power station, designed to supply energy to cruise ships while they are docked in the port. The idea for this came from the company Becker Marine Systems, global leader for rudders and maritime energy-saving systems. The energy guidance expert igus® was commissioned to develop and implement a cable transfer unit.
Five modern gas engines on the “Hummel” with an electrical output of 7.5 MW (megawatts) reliably supply all the energy required by an entire cruise ship. Previously, the on-board diesel generators had to keep running even when the large ships were at anchor. This meant high levels of exhaust gas pollution in the port air. In early 2015, a new EU regulation on the reduction of sulphur emissions for shipping areas in the North and Baltic Seas entered into force. Becker Marine Systems took this as an opportunity to take a completely new look at the question of energy supplies. Its answer is likely to be of major future importance. “The advantage of liquefied natural gas or LNG is that it does not contain any sulphur”, explains Frank Simon, Chief Engineer on the “Hummel” LNG hybrid barge. The emissions are far lower than those from conventional diesel generators, reducing the CO2 emissions by 20 percent and the NOx emissions by up to 88 percent.
On first seeing the barge, we are not looking out for individual igus® components but enjoying the overall impression. The coupling process from the barge to the quay, from where the energy is then supplied on to the cruise ship, takes place using a complete solution from igus®. The floating “Hummel” can be used in any areas of the port where it is required. The igus® complete solution ensures safe access to the barge, compensates the tide levels and waves and guides the oversized connectors onto the land.
A closer look makes it possible to see several igus® components. The iglidur® plate (top right) and the iglidur® plain bearing assist with any necessary rotation of the crane arm. A drylin® housing bearing can be seen at the top left
On 18 May 2015, the “Hummel” LNG barge will officially go into operation. We would like to thank Becker Marine Systems for their kind reception and, in particular, Frank Simon for the interview that he gave us. We wish everyone involved the best of success.
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour”-team