Vessel command interface integrates DP2

ABB Ability Marine Pilot Control functionality is key for vessels working alongside fixed structures ABB Ability Marine Pilot Control functionality is key for vessels working alongside fixed structures
Industry Database

Swiss automation and control specialist ABB has added dynamic positioning 2 (DP2) functionality to its vessel command execution solution, ABB Ability Marine Pilot Control.

Of the multiple pieces of news that have come out from, a clearly very productive ABB at Seawork this year, one of the most potentially game-changing to commercial marine vessel operations is this recent enhancement.

Designed to optimize vessel responsiveness, efficiency and safety across the entire operating profile, ABB Ability Marine Pilot Control allows deployment of joystick control for manoeuvring at all times, including around the berth.

Marine Pilot Control’s manoeuvring capability is built around predicting where the vessel will be in 5-30 seconds instead of measuring its position on arrival. Software calculates the optimum way of executing decisions across the operational profile, depending on how the operator has prioritized speed, manoeuvrability or other parameters.

Integrating DP2 functionality will add redundancy in technical design, ensuring that in the event of a single system fault, the vessel’s position will be maintained. This functionality is particularly crucial for safe and reliable operation of construction and wind farm vessels working alongside fixed structures.

Launched in September 2018, the system has been granted an Approval in Principle (AiP) certificate by Lloyd’s Register, a leading international provider of classification, compliance and consultancy services to the marine industry. As announced just a fortnight before Seawork at maritime trade fair Nor-Shipping 2019, Lloyd’s Register has extended the AiP to now include the precision DP2 functionality.

As well as integrating new functionality in the solutions’ human-machine interface, the DP2 performance draws on ABB’s experience as a DP systems supplier and insights gained from supplying the propulsion technology on which they rely.

Rather than reacting to external conditions, the system’s DP optimizes energy efficiency against internal power plant status, thus adding value from the propeller up. This benefits responsiveness, efficiency and sustainability of vessel operations. As an example, accurate forecasts that a slight load peak will last a short time can avoid powering up another diesel generator.

In November 2018, the system was the pivotal technology enabling trials of the ice-class ferry Suomenlinna II within a pre-selected area of Helsinki harbour that demonstrated how human oversight of vessels from anywhere is achievable using technologies in operation today.

By Jake Frith

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