MacGregor Launches Steering Alert System

By Eric Haun
Thursday, June 19, 2014

MacGregor, part of Cargotec, has launched Soteria, a new alert system designed to complement its Hatlapa and Porsgrunn range of steering gear. Named after the Greek goddess of safety, the system has been designed to offer a series of benefits for both ship owners and shipyards.

“The system’s alert display can be fully integrated on the vessel’s bridge, ensuring clear and easy access to a comprehensive range of alerts,” explained Henrik Schädel, Hatlapa Drives & Controls expert at MacGregor. “The high degree of integration is also beneficial for servicing purposes.”

“The system has been designed for simple, economical installation and requires only one programmable logic controller (PLC), a feature which benefits shipyards," Schädel notes. “Soteria is based on a CAN Bus system, which is very robust and uses standard cabling; this avoids commissioning and operating issues.”

“Shipyards and ship owners enjoy the pricing benefits of being able to purchase the steering gear and essential accessories from a single source, as well as the ability to receive an all rounded service for their products from one supplier who knows the products and integrated functionalities,” he added.

The Soteria system consists of a control cabinet with a touch-screen control panel located in the steering gear compartment, and two further touch-screen panels in the engine control room and on the bridge.

If a steering problem occurs, visual and audio warnings indicate one of three classes of alert:

  • Alarm, displayed in red, indicates a serious problem that needs to be resolved immediately to avoid serious damage to the steering gear.
  • Warning, displayed in yellow, indicates a problem that requires attention but does not present the risk of immediate damage.
  • Caution, displayed in blue, indicates that the stand-by pump has started. It also indicates why the pump has started.

Soteria offers numerous activation options. The required alerts for each pump can be selected from the following list to suit a vessel’s particular steering gear configuration:

  • Overall system failure
  • Feeder failure
  • Hydraulic locking
  • Low servo oil pressure
  • Overload
  • High oil temperature
  • Safematic isolation system failure
  • System error
  • Grease pump failure
  • Clogged oil filter
  • Phase failure
  • Low oil level
  • Reduced rudder torque
  • Stand-by start

The alert system does not affect the function of the steering gear and has been class-approved by Germanischer Lloyd.

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