The professional life of service engineers within our winches and handling equipment product division is to say the least diverse. There is a common misconception that service engineers are mainly handling after sales service jobs. In fact, the scope of their work entails much more than that. Our service engineers are usually involved in the very early stages of projects. They are included as early as the design and production processes. In terms of equipment testing, our service engineers are the ones who plan the test procedures and take part in the Factory Acceptance Tests in close cooperation with clients and class surveyors. When it comes to the final hand-over to the customers, they take care of commissioning and onboard testing of the equipment.
NEW WORKDAY – NEW CHALLENGE
Rene is one of our service engineers. He has been working in the service department for winches and handling equipment at our branch in Norway for five years. Like all his colleagues, he is expertly trained and used to working with standard winches, as well as complex handling systems. Rene spends most of his time out in the field: conducting production tests and commissioning jobs. His remaining time is dedicated to office work such as customer support and after sales duties.
YOU NEVER KNOW IN ADVANCE WHAT A WORKDAY WILL ENTAIL.
For Rene, a typical day starts with a number of phone calls and e-mail exchanges with colleagues at our production sites and customers. The latter are shipyards and ship owners around the globe. He seldom knows in advance what his workday will entail. However, he always strives to provide his customers with the best possible support to ensure the machinery runs smoothly. Time is money, after all. As our customers are rarely located just around the corner, commissioning and service jobs usually involve a lot of travelling.
COMMISSIONING JOBS AROUND THE WORLD
In 2015, PALFINGER MARINE secured the contract for the delivery of an extensive winch package for six anchor handling tug supply (AHTS) vessels. The vessels were built by Oceana Estaleiro Shipyard, a Brazilian yard owned by Grupo CBO. For the six vessels of identical Havyard 843 design, PALFINGER MARINE delivered tailor-made winch systems and lifesaving equipment. In May 2017, our service team including Rene flew to Brazil and successfully commissioned 95 tons of equipment at CBO Bossa Nova, the first out of six AHTS vessels. In total, they spent ten full working days on the job. This included the inspection of the installation, several onboard load tests, and the official hand-over of the winch system to the customer. “The assignment went very smoothly and was finished on time”, Rene recalls. For training purposes, the Norwegian service team was accompanied by local Brazilian colleagues, ensuring that they are capable of providing local support in the future. In the meantime, CBO Bossa Nova is already on its first assignment. The remaining five vessels will be commissioned in 2018.
The chain pulling winches and chain rollers are designed to handle rig chains with a maximum diameter of 162 millimetres, whereby each chain link weighs approximately 500 kilograms. One can imagine that such chain dimensions require massive equipment, which has to be tested thoroughly before delivery. During the testing conducted by Rene and his colleagues, our counterparts from CBO were invited to witness the systems in operation.
Another impressive piece of equipment is our double stern roller. With a weight of almost 66 tons, it is the largest stern roller PALFINGER MARINE has ever designed and delivered. Stern rollers are used during anchor handling operations, allowing the vessel to pull out the anchors offshore and landing them on the cargo deck. Their design enables the vessel to utilise the full safe working load of 500 tons on both rollers simultaneously, which is not possible on most other stern rollers available on the market.