Vibrations are considered to be an important factor when it comes to extending lifetime on marine vessels. The impact becomes clear when the effect of the vibrations are measured and analysed. Unwanted or extensive vibrations are marked by service managers as being the number one cause for defects, aging and wear of a production system.
Vibrations and Dredging
On a dredging vessel such as a so called “Cutter”, the effect of unwanted vibrations are relevant when working on dense or hard sea beds. Rock-like sea beds have greater influences on the cutter, inducing more vibrations, speeding up the aging process.
Wizzo developed a software application for an internationally-operating Dutch dredging company. This application was installed and is currently operative on several cutters, continuously monitoring the vibrations during the dredging process.
When the cutter carves through the sea bed, the resulting vibration is induced onto the ship via the cutter shaft. The energy, measured with an accelerometer, is analysed by the software application.
Greater insight was established by presenting the actual vibrations to the operator. This increased the feeling of the dredging process and understanding the impact of the cutter onto the seabed. Operators learned better that speed and force are directly related to vibration.
By analyzing the vibration data, process limits were detected. These limits were then implemented in the software reporting directly to the operator. The relation between the wear and the aging of the cutter became clear.
Adding external data like force, power, momentum and speed to the equation, lead to further insights. Using these insights, extra triggers were then added to the application, giving engineers tools to create automatic alarm levels.
Currently the lifetime of the equipment is extended by an automatic reduction of unwanted vibrations and energy. As a result: reduction of maintenance costs and an increased production time.