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Imtech systems and hardware aboard LNG hybrid barge

Written by Nick Blenkey
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NOVEMBER 13, 2014 — The LNG Hybrid Barge built to serve as an LNG fueled floating power station delivering electricity to cruise ships in the Port of Hamburg features an extensive range of equipment and systems from Rotterdam headquartered Imtech Marine.

Built for Becker Marine Systems subsidiary Hybrid Port Energy GmbH, the LNG-Hybrid Barge is fitted with Imtech Marine’s electrical solutions and fire extinguishing equipment. In addition, Imtech Marine installed the complete ventilation systems with corresponding heat recovery and sea water cooling systems, supporting the Hybrid Barge’s “green: approach by saving energy through reduced heating and cooling requirements.

Imtech Marine’s scope of supply started with analysis of the new build project. During this analytical phase, Imtech Marine took a closer look at the holistic system of the Hybrid Barge to detail the design and its later operation. After the analytical phase, Imtech Marine installed the full range of electrical and fire extinguishing equipment. In addition, Imtech Marine installed an energy efficient ventilation system with a corresponding heat recovery system, which uses the engine’s heat radiation to evaporate the liquid and cold LNG to provide gas for the engines.

While the barge will supply power to enable AIDA cruise ships to cold iron during the cruise season, in winter it will provide both electrical energy and heat to the public grid. This means that summer and winter operations are at different net frequencies (50/60 Hz). In consequence, the barge’s Power Management System (PMS) was one of the most challenging tasks facing Imtech Marine and needed a special technological solution.

In summer, the PMS of the Hybrid Barge has to interact with the PMS of the AIDA vessel. During this process, the complete electrical load of the AIDA vessel will be transferred to the LNG-Hybrid barge in a specific time frame. To provide the whole load of an AIDA vessel, it is necessary that all five gas-fueled engines of the LNG-Hybrid Barge be running in parallel before being connected to the ship. After the load transfer from the ship to the LNG-Hybrid Barge, all the engines on the AIDA ship will be shut down  (cold ironing).

During winter operation, starting and stopping of the LNG-Hybrid Barge’s gas engines is load dependent. An additional challenge successfully met by Imtech Marine was the handling of the electrical power cable to accommodate to to the large tide range of approximately three meters in the Hamburg harbor.

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