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Wärtsilä raises level of offshore dynamic positioning with new high-performance thruster and propulsion control package

With an important new product introduction, technology group Wärtsilä offers operators of offshore vessels, ferries and tugs notable improved operational performance and greater efficiency. The company’s new high-performance thruster and propulsion control solution package utilises a combination of Wärtsilä’s WST-E embedded electric steerable thruster and WST-R retractable thrusters, together with an updated remote propulsion control system featuring an enhanced user interface ProTouch, to bring greater accuracy and reliability to dynamic positioning (DP) operations.

The solution’s retractable thrusters feature an 8-degree tilted propeller shaft, which can also be offered as an option for the main steerable thruster, depending on vessel layout. This significantly reduces losses in the interaction between the thrusters and hull, and between thrusters, thus delivering the highest effective thrust. The effective thrust is increased by up to 15 to 20% compared to non-tilted thrusters, meaning less installed power is needed for the same DP capability. This makes the unit more efficient, thereby reducing emissions and fuel consumption. In addition, as a rapid thrust response is of utmost importance for these types of vessels, the main thrusters are prepared to deliver faster steering speed and power ramping to ensure a quick response, should the DP capability require it.

“For offshore vessel operators, safe and reliable station keeping is essential. With this optimised thruster and control solution, Wärtsilä offers a DP capability solution that meets all required standards with a marked improvement in efficiency. This saves time, reduces costs, and enables an important contribution to decarbonising vessel operations,” said Lauri Tiainen, Director of Thrusters & Propulsion Control Systems at Wärtsilä Marine.

This introduction comprises three elements: the new Wärtsilä WST-E embedded electric steerable thruster, the introduction of three new Wärtsilä WST-R retractable thrusters – WST-09R, WST-14R and WST-18R –, and the updated Wärtsilä ProTouch Remote Propulsion Control System user interface. Wärtsilä also has its transverse thrusters available for inclusion in the package.

The main thrusters have a compact design with an embedded electric motor in an L-drive configuration. This requires less space than regular L-drive thrusters, allowing these units to be fitted below a working or car deck. More generally, the new units fit into a space where typically Z-drive thrusters have been used. With the new WST-E solution, energy efficiency is enhanced, and the system is simplified.

The three new Wärtsilä retractable thrusters are based on technology which has proven itself in the market in the already available, larger retractable thruster sizes. Wärtsilä is the market leader in providing thrusters with an 8-degree tilted gearbox technology, having introduced the concept in 2013.

Instead of multiple small displays, the updated Wärtsilä ProTouch Remote Propulsion Control System further simplifies and improves the concept, which was originally introduced in 2013. It does this by firstly streamlining the number of screens used, and secondly through the use of larger screens. This enhances the ease of use and improves the situational awareness for navigators and chiefs, as well as reduces the installation efforts for the yards.


Media contact for more information on this release:

Isabella Alder
Positioning and Strategic Communications Manager
Wärtsilä Marine
Tel: +44 (0) 7792 681 757

Benjamin Cresswell / Cyndi Cheng
Account Manager
Navigate PR
Tel: +44 (0) 7824 478058 / +44 (0) 7477 838238
bcresswell@navigatepr.com / ccheng@navigatepr.com

All Wärtsilä releases are available at https://www.wartsila.com/media/news-releases and at http://news.cision.com/wartsila-corporation where also the images can be downloaded.

Use of the image(s) is allowed only in connection with the contents of this press release. Wärtsilä images are available at https://www.wartsila.com/media/image-bank

Wärtsilä in brief
Wärtsilä is a global leader in innovative technologies and lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. We emphasise innovation in sustainable technology and services to help our customers continuously improve environmental and economic performance. Our dedicated and passionate team of 17,800 professionals in more than 280 locations in 79 countries shape the decarbonisation transformation of our industries across the globe. In 2023, Wärtsilä’s net sales totalled EUR 6.0 billion. Wärtsilä is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.

Wärtsilä Marine in brief
Wärtsilä Marine is a global pioneer in power, propulsion and lifecycle solutions for the marine market. We develop industry-leading technologies, advancing maritime’s transition to new fuels. We support building an end-to-end digital ecosystem where all vessels and ports are connected. Ultimately, Wärtsilä Marine is driving the shipping industry forward on its journey towards a decarbonised and sustainable future through our broad portfolio of engines, propulsion systems, hybrid technology, exhaust treatment, shaft line solutions and digital technologies, as well as integrated powertrain systems. Our offering, which is underpinned by our performance-based agreements, upgrades, lifecycle solutions, decarbonisation services, as well as an unrivalled global network of maritime expertise, delivers the efficiency, reliability, safety, and environmental performance needed to support a safe and sustainable future for our customers, our communities and our planet.