• 2017 September 12 08:34

    3D printed ship’s propeller takes step closer to completion

    A prototype of the world’s first class approved ship’s propeller has been produced using 3D printing techniques. The 1,350mm diameter propeller – named WAAMpeller – is the result of a cooperative consortium of companies that includes DAMEN Shipyards Group, RAMLAB, Promarin, Autodesk and Bureau Veritas.

    The WAAMpeller was fabricated from a Nickel Aluminium Bronze (NAB) alloy at RAMLAB (Rotterdam Additive Manufacturing LAB) in the Port of Rotterdam. The propeller was produced with the Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) method using a Valk welding system and Autodesk software. The triple- blade structure uses a Promarin design that is used on Damen’s Stan Tug 1606. With production complete, the WAAMpeller will be CNC milled at ‘Autodesk’s Advanced Manufacturing Facility in Birmingham, UK’.

    This prototype 3D printed propeller represents a steep learning curve of the understanding of material properties. “This is because 3D printed materials are built up layer by layer,” says Kees Custers, Project Engineer in Damen’s R&D department. “As a consequence, they display different physical properties in different directions – a characteristic known as anisotropy. Steel or casted materials, on the other hand, are isotropic – they have the same properties in all directions.”

    Because of this critical difference, one of the first steps was to carry out extensive testing of the material properties of the printed material to ensure compliance to Bureau Veritas standards. “This involved printing two straightforward walls of material – then using a milling machine to produce samples for lab testing of tensile and static strengths.” It can also be said that the 400kg WAAMpeller sets a milestone in terms of 3D printing production techniques.

    “The challenge has been to translate a 3D CAD file on a computer into a physical product. This is made more complex because this propeller is a double-curved, geometric shape with some tricky overhanging sections,” explains Mr Custers. Yannick Eberhard from Promarin’s R&D department adds that “the transformation from a semi-automatic to robotic processing is the solid foundation for even more complex and reliable future propeller designs“.

    “Material characterization and mechanical testing have been an important part of this project,” says Wei Ya, Postdoctoral Researcher from the University of Twente at RAMLAB. “We have to make sure that the material properties meet the needs of the application. Material toughness, for example – ensuring that the propeller is able to absorb significant impact without damage.”

    “But we have also been working towards optimising the production strategy for 3D metal deposition. This includes bead shape and width, as well as how fast we can deposit the printed material.” Highlighting RAMLAB’s capacity to print objects with maximum dimensions of 7x2x2 metres, Mr Ya says: “For large scale 3D metal deposition, the WAAMpeller is really ground-breaking for the maritime industry.”

    “This technology is a fundamental change in the concept of how we make things. With additive manufacturing, you can print most metallic components that are needed in principle. There is so much potential for the future – these techniques will have a big impact on the supply chain.” Class approval This first prototype WAAMpeller will be used for display purposes, and planning for a second example is already underway.

    “We start production of a second propeller with class approval later next month –  using all the lessons we have learned over the past few months,” notes Mr Custers. “We are aiming to install this second one onto one of our tugs later this year.” 

    Damen Shipyards Group

    Damen Shipyards Group operates 33 shipbuilding and repair yards, employing 9,000 people worldwide. DAMEN has delivered more than 6,000 vessels in more than 100 countries and delivers some 180 vessels annually to customers worldwide. Based on its unique, standardised ship-design concept DAMEN is able to guarantee consistent quality. Damen’s focus on standardisation, modular construction and keeping vessels in stock leads to short delivery times, low ‘total cost of ownership’, high resale values and reliable performance. Furthermore, DAMEN vessels are based on thorough R&D and proven technology. DAMEN offers a wide range of products, including tugs, workboats, naval and patrol vessels, high speed craft, cargo vessels, dredgers, vessels for the offshore industry, ferries, pontoons and superyachts. For nearly all vessel types DAMEN offers a broad range of services, including maintenance, spare parts delivery, training and the transfer of (shipbuilding) know-how. DAMEN also offers a variety of marine components, such as nozzles, rudders, anchors, anchor chains and steel works. DAMEN Shiprepair & Conversion (DSC) has a worldwide network of sixteen repair and conversion yards of which twelve are located in North West Europe. Facilities at the yards include more than 50 floating and (covered) drydocks, the largest of which is 420 x 90 metres, as well as slopes, ship lifts and indoor halls. Projects range from the smallest simple repairs through Class’ maintenance to complex refits and the complete conversion of large offshore structures. DSC completes around 1,350 repair and maintenance jobs annually, both at yards as well as in ports and during voyage.




2018 July 19

18:14 DP World signs agreement to boost international trade
17:55 NIBULON launched second T3500 Project tug
17:32 IMO supports spill preparedness in the Northwest Pacific
17:10 ABB turbochargers support optimal performance and fuel efficiency for one of the world’s largest container ships
16:48 Escort vessel Yaroslav Mudriy of RF Navy’s Baltic Fleet leaves port of Cyprus
16:21 Ocean Alliance - CMA CGM to reshuffle its CIMEX 6 service
15:59 Blagoveshchensk shipyard launched hydrographic vessel Aleksandr Rogotsky built for RF Navy’s Pacific Fleet
15:26 Austal USA opens new San Diego operations office
15:04 MABUX says high volatility remains in global bunker market
14:45 Port of Klaipeda (Lithuania) handled 22.2 million tonnes of cargo in 6M'18, up 7.6% Y-o-Y
14:27 FSB Border Service explains its position as regards vessels owned by foreign entities and used by Russian fishermen
14:09 New CMA CGM's FAK rates from Asia to North Europe
14:02 The PORT OF KIEL invests in cargo handling and environmental technology
13:43 Season of icebreaker assistance in water area of port Sabetta is over from July 20
13:28 Coast Guard offloads approximately 8.5 tons of cocaine
13:04 CMA CGM: FAK rates from Asia to the Mediterranean
12:55 NOVATEK shipped first LNG cargos to China
12:36 ILCA, Port of Amsterdam to host Chem Together meeting, Sept. 11
12:10 Fuel oil prices are flat at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
11:42 State Duma approves Russian ships’ multiple crossings of State Border through notification procedure
11:19 CMA CGM to apply FAK rates for Asia-North Africa trades
10:54 Canada’s Davie Shipbuilding delivered first LNG-powered ferry to be built in North America
10:35 NYK establishes logistics JV for finished cars using automobile freight trains in India
10:03 New Port of Hamburg “Connection Compass 2018/19” has arrived
09:46 Brent Crude futures price down 0.18% to $72.77, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.12% to $67.67
09:14 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,688 points

2018 July 18

18:31 Naval Group posts H1 2018 performance results
18:00 BC Ferries announces sponsorship of the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Education Centre
17:36 DP World announces closing of Continental Warehousing Corporation (India) transaction
17:12 Marine Technics to participate in International Far East Maritime Show-2018
16:44 Oleg Bukin elected as Chairman of Tuapse Commercial Seaport BoD
16:23 Transocean and Chevron Australia ink 11-well contract
15:45 Stena Bulk positions itself in crude oil
15:19 Transocean announces 13-well contract for Transocean 712
14:57 AGCS issued Safety & Shipping Review 2018
14:43 Scandlines Helsingborg-Helsingör kicks off the holiday traffic season without delay
14:18 Intermarine UK promotes Portland Port to Government minister
14:00 Szczecin to become the capital of Baltic seaports in September
13:31 OHT to order ULSTEIN-designed heavy lift transport and installation vessel
12:59 Ports of Szczecin and Świnoujście announce 12-pct increase of cargo handling in HI’18
12:22 Dorian LPG confirms receipt of director nominations from BW LPG
11:50 Throughput of Ukraine’s seaports in HI’18 fell by 3.1% Y-o-Y to 53.8 million tonnes
11:25 TTS Colibri 3D compensated crane passes FAT
11:03 Overseas Shipholding Group places order for cemical tanker duo with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard
10:41 Yaroslavsky Shipbuilding Plant launches Svetlyak-class patrol boat Balaklava
10:32 Brent Crude futures price down 0.35% to $71.91, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.36% to $66.92
10:16 ICS encouraged by IMO progress on 2020 global sulphur cap implementation issues
09:59 Bunker prices continue going down at the Port of Saint-Petersburg, Russia (graph)
09:40 Throughput of Russian seaports in 6M’18 grew by 2.8% Y-o-Y to 394.8 million tonnes (detalization)
09:16 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,721 points

2018 July 17

18:24 North P&I Club and 24Vision ink partnership agreement
18:07 Lockheed Martin awarded Navy's contract worth more than $450 million in FMS funding for MMSC project
17:55 TransContainer announced its operating results for the second quarter and the first half of 2018
17:27 Equinor buys shares for use in the group's Share saving plan
17:11 Vigor Marine LLC gets Navy's contract for USNS Mercy mid-term availability
16:56 Okskaya Sudoverf puts into operation Belmax 4, fourth non-self-propelled barge of Project ROB20
16:34 Prosafe awarded important contract in Brazil
15:47 Orsted opts for Tekmar's CPS for Borssele 1 and 2 offshore wind farm projects
15:28 Port of Rotterdam places a bee colony in the port area
14:44 Baltic Ports Conference 2018 will focus on financing, economy and energy supply