ABB opens marine research lab

Oct 30 2015

Power and automation group, ABB has opened a new laboratory. Located in Helsinki, next to the Azipod manufacturing plant, it will bring together all ABB’s offerings for the shipping industry under one roof.

ABB said it had invested significant funds in this project, which will be used by the 30 ABB engineers dedicated to marine research in Helsinki, as well as to demonstrate products to customers.

“We are constantly testing and developing new technologies. This laboratory is a wonderful step forward and enables a full range of innovation activities, now that all of our marine systems can be tested and developed in the same place,” said Mikko Lepistö, ABB’s vice president of software and automation operations.

It will support ABB’s core marine technologies, which include automation, remote control systems, propulsion, integrated operations and waste heat recovery systems. In the future it could also function as a simulator.

The laboratory is designed to meet the needs of the customer. Heikki Soljama, managing director of ABB’s marine and ports business unit, commented, “R&D is as important as ever for the shipping industry. The challenges facing the whole sector are well documented and now is the time for innovation and new solutions; this lab will help us achieve that goal. Ultimately, though, we will be responding to the needs of the industry and the desire for cost efficiency, reliability and safety will always be key.”

The lab will fully utilise the integrated operations concept, which marries the shore operation to what happens on board, an outcome of ABB’s commitment to the Internet of Things, Services and People.

“Digitalisation allows owners to monitor remotely entire fleets using cloud services. When data collected by automation systems is utilised in the most optimal way, we can save both costs and environment. The Internet of Things, Services and People opens new possibilities for the marine industry and especially for the development of the service business,” Lepistö said.

ABB has been advancing technologies for the ‘Internet of Things, Services and People’ concept for more than a decade via its control systems, communication solutions, sensors and software.

The company claimed that its technologies allow industry, utility and infrastructure customers to make more intelligent use of data to optimise their operations, increase productivity and achieve greater flexibility. 

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