Robotized laser cladding promises longer life for two stroke pistons

JANUARY 16, 2018 — A new robotized laser cladding technology promises to revolutionize the reconditioning of large bore pistons in two-stroke engines.

The new reconditioning service is being introduced by Wärtsilä's QuantiServ unit and is said to minimize welding, cause less thermal shock to the base material, and replace the old chromium layer's galvanic application.

"In addition to its environmental efficiency, the new coating extends the piston head's lifespan and time between overhauls (TBO), compared to conventional chromium layers. We have field-tested the new technology on container vessels, and after 15,000 running hours, the results are very promising, showing excellent running behaviour and very low piston wear rates," says Ole Pyndt Hansen, Director, QuantiServ. "Based on these tests, we predict that reconditioning the piston by using the new laser cladding process can almost double its lifespan."

According to Guido Barbazza, Vice President, Emerging Businesses, Wärtsilä Services, "this new technology is one of several innovative steps that can bring the traditional reconditioning processes into the digitalised 21st century, while ensuring the predictability of assets for our customers and supporting the Wärtsilä and QuantiServ vision for setting industry standards for smart and sustainable solutions."

The new robotized laser cladding technology has been developed in QuantiServ's reconditioning knowledge center in Kruiningen, Netherlands and will this year be made available in selected QuantiServ remanufacturing workshops globally.

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