AC drives for largest ever active heave-compensated winch system

14 November 2011

AC drives manufacturer Vacon is to deliver liquid-cooled AC drives with a total power of 2.7 MW for active heave-compensated winches onboard a Norwegian-built Inspection, Maintenance and Repair (IMR) ship. The delivery will take place in March 2012.

Vacon and AXTech signed a contract for 17 liquid-cooled 690 V AC drives to be used for one of the largest electrified active heave-compensated winches ever built. The winch system will be installed onboard a new IMR vessel, which is to be built in Norway.

The winches are used for lowering and lifting equipment to and from the seabed, at depths down to 2,000m. The main winch has a capacity of 70 tons and also comprises several auxiliary and guide-wire winches. The winch system uses Vacon's Active Front-End technology, which fulfills the most stringent harmonic distortion requirements set by the Norwegian classification body, Den Norske Veritas. It also allows the energy generated by winch braking to be fed back to the vessel's electrical network.

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