HEINZMANN retrofitting common rail system to Swedish icebreakers

Swedish Marine Administration Icebreaker YMER, retrofitted with HEINZMANN common rail system

Press Release (April, 2014)

How can old propulsion engines be upgraded to achieve remarkable fuel savings and to meet current and future emission regulations? HEINZMANN, known as a specialist for electronic fuel injection, has recently demonstrated the successful conversion of a marine propulsion engine from mechanical fuel injection to a common rail system. The customer tailored turnkey solution is available for nearly any 4-stroke and 2-stroke engine; providing highly economic results.

The Swedish Marine Administration operates several icebreakers in the Baltic Sea. Typical for these special-purpose ships is a “push-pull” operation during ice breaking. Frequent and fast load changes result in relatively high fuel consumption and smoke values. Utilising the flexibility and the injection accuracy of a common rail system the customer expected clear operating improvements.
The electric propulsion system in question, consists of five 40-year old Pielstick 2.2 engines generating 3.5 MW each. Common Rail High Pressure Pump on Propulsion EngineDepending on the output requirements, two to five engines are used in parallel. To start with, only one engine was converted to enable the comparison of engine performance, fuel saving and emissions. In December 2013 the system installation and ommissioning was done without any major modification to the engine itself, and in close cooperation with the engine manufacturer. Tests have been performed during the normal service since the beginning of January this year. All test results met the expectations. Compared to the original hydraulic governor, the transient behaviour was improved and at the same time particle emissions disappeared completely.

As expected, the NOx values were not reduced. With an optional exhaust gas recirculation system IMO Tier 2 is expected to be reached without any aftertreatment. Most important were the fuel savings which were greater than 6 %. Due to perfect cylinder to cylinder balancing and the applied injection profile the engine is running very smoothly with an expected positive impact on service costs and lifetime. As the next step the remaining engines will be converted for the next winter season and all of the other icebreakers will be converted one year later.

HEINZMANN has 20 years of experience in electronic fuel injection, offering in-house-developed and produced mechanical components such as high-pressure pumps and fuel injectors. Complete common rail systems including monitoring and protection components as well as touch screen based operating panels, can be supplied from one source. The company also offers all related services including engineering, application works, installation, commissioning and maintenance. Engine sizes range from 500 kW up to >10.000 kW.

Common rail retrofit is particularly recommended for applications with variable load and speed; thus utilising all the benefits of advanced electronic fuel injection. Due to the remarkable fuel saving achieved on typical marine applications, the return of investment can be expected in less than two years (assuming >5000 operating hours per year). For rail traction and comparable industrial applications the savings are similar.

In the case of dual fuel conversion of an engine, the electronic fuel injection on the diesel side provides the best possible conversion ratio and lowest fuel consumption, in diesel as well as in gas operation. Further improvements can be achieved by combustion optimisation and by the modification of combustion chamber and injection spray patterns. Based on a modular concept and standard components, cost effective solutions can be provided for different applications.