Batteries, mandatory part of future marine applications

< Back 2020 / 03 / 31

One of the EnergyVaasa companies which has a growing need of batteries is Danfoss. But why frequency converters would need batteries?

Frequency converters, or AC drives in many forms of Active Front-Ends, micro-grids, or DC-DC converters, do not need batteries for themselves, but they are the power electronics units that act as active interfaces between energy sources, batteries, and consumption of all kind.

“I would like to say that all marine industrial applications utilizing electric energy storage, or batteries, leverage AC drives as a mandatory part of the system. Our customers have a constantly growing demand for the batteries, and this is how we can say that we have a growing need for the batteries, too,” says Martti Tuomas Alatalo, Global Director for Marine & Offshore at Danfoss Drives.

For instance in the marine industry, in hybrid and fully-electric vessels, large energy storage systems (batteries) are primarily used for the propulsion of the vessel. Secondly, they are also being used for feeding the vessel’s hotel load network (i.e. lighting, HVAC and communications). Depending on the vessel’s size and model, these energy storage systems are ranging from 0.3 to 10 MWh of energy. In Video 1, we are demonstrating the shore-to-vessel charging operation.

Danfoss offers a wide portfolio of solutions that utilizes the AC drive technology for basically all hybrid and fully-electric propulsion and power generation systems. Such applications include the electrical main propulsion, bow thrusters, shore-to-vessel shore supply, as well as power grid management and power generation but also battery interface technologies, e.g. DC-DC converters between the batteries and the vessel’s DC grid. See the operational modes in Video 2.

Video 1: Energy storage (battery systems) onboard, charged by shore supply on shore

Video 2: Operational modes for hybrid vessels