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We all know that a ship is a mobile power plant. It has enormous varieties of machineries for its propulsion, cargo operations, and shipboard safety as well as for maintaining the comfort standards of the crew. In all this wide variety of machinery, hydraulics plays a very vital role. The hydraulic technology is so precise and accurate that they are used in the main engine control and maneuvering systems, too. Let us now discuss on some important hydraulic applications on board ships and a short description of each.
In this system, air pressure or flow is used as a measuring unit. And the corrective command also involves air pressure. For example, auto backwash filters where the pressure difference of incoming and outgoing oil is measured in term of air pressure. When air pressure will increase because of filter getting choked and at a defined value filter will backflush with help of air.
Advantages of Pneumatic Ship Control System:
- This is not affected by ship’s power supply variations for short term.
- It requires a low cost of installation.
- No heat generated and hence no risk of fire.
- The simplicity of the components and no complex structure.
- Actuators are cheaper and accurate than electric systems.
- It involves only simple control air piping system.
Advantages of Hydraulic Ship Control System:
- This system has the high horsepower-to-weight ratio.
- It’s reliable to operate.
- The leaks in this systems are easier to find.
- It always maintains constant torque and force.
- The hydraulic power can be transmitted over long distances.
- The motion reversal in the hydraulic system is fast.
- It is capable of handling strong, heavy loads, shock forces.
- It requires less energy to operate.
- The overall wear because of oil lubrication is less.
- In any case, it does not generate sparks.
- It is capable of smooth operation for lifting and movement of loads.
- It can operate in hot environments.