Simply Water as the New Standard?


By MarEx 2016-07-11 15:38:06

When will the use of oil for lubricating propeller shafts become something of the past?

For almost 60 years oil as a lubricant has dominated the marine propulsion market.

But more and more governments and classification societies are supporting and promoting the use of water as an environmental friendly and necessary alternative for oil.

For instance the US government and its VGP (United states Environmental Protection Agency’s Vessel General Permit) requirement and DNV/GL/LR and BV revising their rules for shaft withdrawal intervals in benefit of the water lubricated systems. DNV has even set the required interval to unlimited.

The trend to design “green shaft installations” at Maprom engineering started already more than 35 years ago. Their shaft systems are successfully used on Navy-, inland-, dredging and seagoing ships, both national and international.

During those 35 years they ran into some following pros and cons of using water as a lubricant;

Pros                                                                                                       Cons

Low operational cost.                                                                     Higher initial cost.

Complying with (future) demand government(s)                              Requires shaft liners

Longer life time of components, thus durable.

Following green shipping requirements.

Easy maintenance.

Low coefficient of friction due to hydrodynamics.

No risk of polluting thus environmentally safe.

Proof of durability:

Pushboat  Ex EWT107/Veerhaven-V , currently sailing in south-America, named Juanjo A. is still running with the  in 1971 installed water lubricated bearings and has achieved a more than 245.000 running hours record.

Container vessel Bolero (135x17,5 mtr) build in 2003 has operated for more than 75.000 running hours, approximately, 6000 per year, without shaft withdrawal and without overhauling of the seals.

Royal Dutch navy Supply vessel Zr. Ms. Amsterdam, sailing with water lubricated bearings installed in 2009 is expected to last more than 160.000 running hours after 2014 inspection.

Cutter suction dredge “Halternsee” which had a Maprom designed water lubricated cutter shaft bearing installed in 2001 is expected to last more than 110.000 running hours after 2011 inspection. 

The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.