One example was the Swedish marine electronics company CA Clase Marinelektronik, which recently undertook VDR retrofits on two product tankers, ‘Stella Orion’ and ‘Stella Virgo’, for Tarbit Tankers.
The existing VDRs were at the end of their service life and were no longer supported by their manufacturer. The shipowner agreed to replace them with new Danelec Marine DM100 VDRs.
Normally, removing an obsolete VDR and replacing it with a new unit would involve many hours of work for the installing technician, since the existing components are often not compatible with the new technology. To solve this problem, Danelec developed a range of conversion kits to replace more than 30 different models of VDRs and simplified VDRs (S-VDRs), including all major existing and legacy brands.
The conversion kits provide specific sets of hardware, software and data interfaces tailored to each VDR model.
“We believe the Danelec conversion kits saved us at least one-to-two days on each of the installations,” said Gert Kjellberg, service technician and surveyor at CA Clase Marinelektronik.
Kjellberg said that the installations went very smoothly on the two ships.The compact DM100 unit was an easy fit into the old much larger VDR console. Many of the existing sensor modules and cables were able to be re-used. The serial outputs from these modules were connected to a new serial input to the new DM100. “This saves a lot of time and cost and makes the installation very pleasant for the service technician,” he said.
The Danelec mechanical conversion kits consist of pre-drilled universal adaptor plates and mounting brackets for all system components, including the VDR main unit, memory capsule and bridge microphones. The kits also include remote data interface (RDI) units for serial, analog and digital connections, as well as a software tool for conversion of old configuration files.
“We provide the hardware and software conversion kits totally free of charge,” said Hans Ottosen, Danelec Marine CEO. “Feedback from installing service dealers reveals that the retrofit kits can reduce the installation times by 25-50%, saving time and money and minimising downtime for the ship.”
Ottosen said the company is also offering its DanelecConnect remote data gateway free of charge as part of its VDR retrofit packages. “This gives shipowners a low-cost and painless upgrade pathway to initiate remote retrieval of real-time data from ship systems and sensors in shore offices,” he said.