High revenue-earning ships need a fresh approach to systems integration to take full advantage of available efficiency gains, according to leading technical service provider Imtech Marine.

Offering what it calls a unique blend of maritime-specific ‘cable to data’ expertise, including hardware, software, connectivity, remote monitoring and servicing, the Dutch Imtech Marine group said it is consulting with ship owners in many different markets, from workboats to cruise ships, about how best to maximize returns from investment in technology.

“Wider plant efficiency is critical for cruise ships,” said Andre Gebken, head of the cruise ship department at Imtech Marine Schiffbau-/Dockbautechnik. “To achieve ‘Air in line with demand’, an approach is needed that squeezes every last percentage out of efficiency, with HVAC being controlled by timers, by cabin cards or by C02 sensors,” he said. “For example, recently we have measured efficiency gains yielded by absorption coatings optimizing heat and moisture recovery.” In addition, according to Imtech, it has been able to improve payload by using decentralized AC concepts and reducing newbuilding costs by enhancing engineering and building processes, to deliver ‘slimmer and sharper’ unit designs for example.

Imtech Marine was also recently selected by BAE Systems to provide electrical distribution and HVAC systems for the UK’s Type 26 Global Combat Ship Program, where the need to provide protection against chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear threats added an extra complication.

“As a maritime business built on technical knowhow, we have a contribution to make in terms of optimizing the use of technology in pursuit of best returns from assets,” said André Meijer, managing director of Imtech Marine. “We are a company focused on offering flexible total solutions, so our experience is that buying technology on a one-off basis to address an immediate operational or regulatory challenge often invites open-ended expense later.”

Imtech believes that greater vessel efficiencies are available by integrating technology onboard and data management ashore to create ‘SMART’ infrastructure.