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Danfoss Editron and Kongsberg Evotec partner on advanced winch

Written by Nick Blenkey
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JANUARY 9, 2019 — Danfoss Editron has partnered with Kongsberg Evotec part of the Kongsberg Maritime group, to develop a fully electric-powered marine winch powered by the sophisticated Danfoss Editron electric drivetrain system.

The Editron drivetrain uses lightweight and compact, yet extremely powerful, reluctance-assisted permanent magnet motors. These save weight and space in the deck handling equipment.

The new electric solutions offer better area utilization in both newbuilds and retrofits as they save on weight and space compared to traditional hydraulic-powered winches and their associated piping and hydraulic power unit. Hydraulic winches are also less energy efficient than their electric counterparts, have higher noise levels and, according to Danfoss Editron, present a risk of oil spilling into the marine environment.

Integrating electric components into the winches allows them to be controlled remotely, making them more responsive to commands and providing functionality with tailored applications that can give direct upsides to operation safety and cost. This drives further efficiencies by lowering fuel costs and associated CO2 emissions when compared to hydraulic designs.

The Editron winch application software also combines winch-specific functionalities, such as wire tension control and limit, speed control, position control and brake control. Additionally, several safety features are directly implemented into the drivetrain to ensure a quick and seamless response to any failure handling event. This is achieved by operating the drives in a redundant set-up and having this philosophy anchored into the drive/control interface architecture.

“Compared to traditional hydraulic winches, which still have a strong standing in some applications, we see the new generation of winch solutions as an important contribution to tomorrow’s handling technology,” says Kongsberg Evotec’s Operations Manager Bjørn Berge. “As we are aiming at being a major player within marine handling technology, we need to ensure that we can help our end-customers reduce their operating costs and, at the same time, increase safety through better, easier and more accurate control of the equipment. Weight and space savings when installing our winches onto both newbuild and older vessels, where we are working on retrofit perspective, are vitally important to this.

Through tests and demonstrations, we have proven that our cooperation with Danfoss Editron was the right strategic decision and that we are now in front with some of the solutions we are offering to the market. We consider Danfoss Editron to be one of our most important technology partners for the future and we highly appreciate the cooperation and collaboration established on both a technical and management level within the two companies.”

The first two electric winch systems, featuring the new Danfoss Editron drivetrain solutions, have been supplied to the offshore and seismic markets. In early 2019, the first large-scale project will be commissioned and delivered from Havyard in Leirvik, Norway after going through full-scale interface and functionality testing, with 10 winches and 20 drives and motors in total being installed on a pelagic trawler.

Additionally, a Launch and Recovery System (LARS) featuring a dual motor fed by two inverters and Kongsberg Evotec control system has been delivered to a Norwegian customer for start-up and commissioning in Turkey. As well as the standard drivetrain functions and safety, this system includes heave compensating functionality, where power efficiency and regeneration become major contributors to increased system performance and reduced operating costs.

Danfoss Editron is also working with Kongsberg Evotec on an automated deployment and retrieving system for seismic nodes, powered by its Editron software. The system, which will increase the speed and reduce the cost of ocean bottom seismic node operations, can be seen as a revolution in its market and the technology is now available for customers.

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