Diagnostic Testing of Rotating
Electrical Machines on Cruise Ships

January 31, 2022

Reliability on the High Seas

A cruise ship is like a floating city with most of the necessities available on land. Of all the conveniences, electric power is mandatory and the basis for any successful holiday on such vessels.  Not only on cruise ships, but also on ships of all kinds is electric power essential. These ships use different types of engines – primarily diesel engines – for both propulsion and driving generators that produce electrical power for lighting, electrical motors and various essential equipment as well communication systems on board.

The same as on land, these on-board electrical generators are subject to various mechanical, electrical and environmental forces that can affect their condition. This is especially true of the electrical insulation in generators, which progressively ages and is subject to damaging defects that can eventually lead to failure.

Rotating machine condition assessments on ships

To keep motors and generators reliably operating on the high seas, certain electrical diagnostic tests are recommended for these machines. This includes partial discharge (PD) measurement on a regular basis to assess the condition of the electrical insulation, to detect potential failure-causing defects and to plan equipment maintenance and even replacement accordingly.

In our recent episode of our Energy Talks podcast series, Fabian Öttl, our expert for diagnostic testing on rotating electrical machines, and Patrick Zander, one of our experts for PD testing and monitoring, discuss how to ensure the reliability of motors and generators on ships through diagnostic testing.

Fabian and Patrick describe which diagnostic tests are necessary to assess the insulation condition of electrical generators and motors and when these tests should be performed. They also highlight the challenges when performing these tests on ships and recommend the types of measurement equipment that help you to easily perform diagnostic testing in small, limited spaces.

In addition, Fabian explains how the same compact, easily transportable testing equipment is used in other applications where limited space is a factor. Patrick also highlights the differences between off-line PD testing and on-line PD monitoring, and how both can be used to ensure an accurate condition assessment of insulation in electrical equipment – both on sea and land.

Listen to the podcast episode

(Length: 24:31 minutes)


Energy Talks is OMICRON’s regular podcast series with expert discussions on power system testing topics. Listen to all episodes here: Energy Talks - the OMICRON Podcast

More information about offline testing on rotating machine testing and our related solutions can be found on the following page: 

Offline Testing on Rotating Electrical Machines

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