January 17, 2022
The Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard had a requirement for a new family of arctic-capable patrol vessels. Vessels like this typically have a variety of mission and duty cycles and need a power system that can cover a range of operating scenarios, meet the demands of harsh Arctic conditions, and provide energy-efficiency to allow the ships to stay on mission and respect the environment.
During 2021, the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) has achieved two milestones in meeting its mission to defend Canada’s interests at home and abroad, in all three oceans that border Canada. In June 2021 the first of eight AOPS, Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) HarryDeWolf, was commissioned into service with the RCN, and during July 2021, the second of Canada’s AOPS, the future HMCS MargaretBrooke, was delivered to the RCN by Irving Shipbuilding Inc., builder of Canada’s naval ships.
As a relatively small naval and coast guard patrol ship, space and program budget can both be a significant constraint. There can be a perception that electric drive ship systems are only suited to larger naval combat ships. With decades of experience providing electric power and propulsion on both commercial and naval ships, from small specialist vessels to the largest, GE Power Conversion was able to demonstrate the feasibility, affordability,and benefits.
Since 2012, GE has been the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) for the AOPS IFEP, including system design and manufacture of key equipment as well as support to installation, trials and commissioning at the build yard, Irving Shipbuilding Inc., in Halifax, Canada. Work continues apace as the next AOPS are already under construction.
- GE’s Integrated Full Electrical Power and Propulsion System (IFEP), including GE’s electric drive train for each of the two propulsion shafts
- Rugged induction propulsion motors with optimized design for ice operations, providing 9MW of propulsion power
- Proven MV7000 variable frequency drive converters for propulsion
- Bow thrusters, engine generators, medium voltage switchboards, distribution and propulsion transformers, bow thruster motor
- Commissioning, and sea trials support
- Integrated of MAN engines, generators, switchboards, transformers, main propulsion drives, electric propulsion motors and shaft lines for the program of 8 vessels.
- For the full-electric propulsion system, GE leveraged its proven technologies, building on recent experience in providing power and propulsion solutions for naval ice class vessels for South Africa and Chile, as well as other commercial vessels.
- Induction motor optimized for ice operations, offering high over-torque, eliminating the need for propulsion reduction gears, an important factor for ships operating in heavy, multi-year ice conditions.
- This makes the AOPS propulsion solution highly suitable for a variety of other ice class vessels that could operate in the Arctic and Antarctic.
- GE’s proven MV7000 variable frequency drive is used in many vessel types around the world as well as in numerous industrial applications. This large user base ensures a ready supply of spares and service support.