The greatest possible reliability of his ship over its whole life cycle is of great importance to every ship-owner. A breakdown of systems or indeed of the whole ship means not only economic damage but also the loss of reputation with customers or possibly charterers.
We have therefore paid a lot of attention to the way systems are laid out in our ships and to the reliability of the whole. Depending on the ship type, a high degree of redundancy is aimed for. Where required, reliability can be secured by means of modern formalistic evaluation methods like FMEA.
Sub contract suppliers in particular contribute, with their components, to the reliability of the whole system. FSG secures high standards by means of its own quality controls and stringent supplier evaluation system.
Should it ever come to the breakdown of a component, the unit has to be repaired or replaced fast. To ensure this, accessibility and replacement have already been simulated in the CAD model.
Reliability from the point of view of the ship-owner however also means keeping the vessel on its timetable – even in bad weather. The FSG offers support in this by means of a possible route analysis which takes into account sea conditions and the additional resistance of the ship. This analysis has, on the one hand, an influence on the ship’s design and on the other can be a route advisory programme in the hands of the ship-owner. Reliable manoeuvering is also part of FSG analyses.
All of these measures contribute to making FSG ships extremely reliable.
Our passengers enjoy the highest comfort
Comfort on board has to be among the most important criteria for a passenger ship. So it is of paramount importance that we rise above the competition in this sector.
Passenger comfort has the highest priority on every passenger ship. Loud noises, pronounced vibration, excessively large movements at sea or a bad indoor climate all affect the well-being of passengers on board. This also applies of course to the crew, whose health and thus also performance can be affected over a longer period.
FSG ships meet the highest standards when it comes to passenger comfort. The ships delivered quite recently to our customer BC Ferries were awarded the highest comfort class notation of the American classification society ABS. The notation was based on noise and vibration as well as movement at sea and interior climate.
To achieve such a standard, relevant measurements such as sound levels, acceleration, air temperature and humidity are taken at hundreds of measurement points throughout the vessel. Ship movement can also be predicted for the planned route. If unacceptable measurements are recorded, remedial steps can be taken in time with measures like roll damping plant.
Our ships sail the green waves
Increasing environmental awareness and ever stricter national and international regulations are placing particularly high demands on the environmental sustainability of ships. In the eyes of the public, shipping companies are now being rated according to the environmental credentials of their vessels.
In the forefront are moves to reduce pollutant emissions, namely carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide and nitrous gases. It is the aim of the international community to limit the carbon dioxide emitted by all transport modes, not just shipping. Even though it has not yet been finally clarified just how this can be achieved instrumentally, it is already evident that efficient ships will offer even greater economic advantages in future. In this, the extraordinary successes of the FSG in significantly reducing fuel consumption by optimising hull shapes are paying off. Compared to similar ships from competing shipyards, FSG designs with the same main parameters consume up to 20% less fuel.
Great significance continues to be attached to sulphur and nitrous oxides. In this sector particularly there are already restrictions. Ships with high emission levels may no longer sail in so-called Emission Control Areas (such as the North Sea and the Baltic) or may no longer call at the ports of some individual countries. The FSG leads the way in the application of secondary waste gas cleaning measures, namely binding or washing out sulphur dioxide and the selective catalytic reduction of nitrous oxides (SCR).
The most effective method of lowering emissions is to change fuel to LNG. This reduces CO2 emissions by 20% and nitrous oxide emissions by 90% while practically removing all the sulphur dioxide emissions. FSG is one of the first shipyards to have looked at LNG as a fuel. Now backed by experience in a national research study (GasPax) and several other projects, the yard offers mature overall solutions for LNG-driven ships.
The ferry ships of our customer BC Ferries can be mentioned here again as outstanding examples of environmentally friendly operation. In this case, the job was not only to minimise classical emissions but also pollution from particles (visible smoke) when the Diesel generators started up. This was achieved by means of a sophisticated engine management system (higher revolutions at the start, limiting load and variation of the injection time and intensity). Here again it was shown that the FSG, along with its customers, is prepared to do everything to make ships as environmentally friendly as possible.
Always on the safe side
The safety of life and limb on board ship has to be the top priority for every shipbuilder and ship operator. In addition, there is undoubtedly the safety of transported cargo to consider.
The FSG has traditionally shown extraordinary concern for the ship safety sector and its ships set benchmarks.
A classical field of ship safety is without doubt the intact-stability of a vessel. On modern ships heavy rolling in lightly crabbing seas is a problem which has not yet been adequately addressed in international regulations. Because of this the dynamic intact-stability criterion –the so-called ISEI index – was developed in co-operation with the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg. It places stringent demands on intact- stability and is consistently implemented on FSG ships. The shipyard also lays down tougher standards in the fields of loading and structural mechanics than are required by the official regulations. Reality is better reflected by directly calculating loads than it is by applying building regulations. This often leads to structural strengthening and thus to an increase in safety. Typical examples of this are the slamming calculations carried out by FSG.
The likelihood of a ship leaking can also ultimately decide the fate of human lives. Here also the FSG achieves optimum safety by implementing probabilistic leakage calculation methods in combination with the Monte Carlo method it has itself developed.
FSG is active in many other areas of ship safety and in research and development activity – for example in the international Fire Resist programme which focuses on materials with particularly improved fire resistance. The results of all this research goes straight into FSG ships, meaning that safety is constantly being improved.