Latest news

Scrubber information event

During the weekend of 4-5 November we will install a completely
prefabricated scrubber system. This modular approach has
reduced the operational downtime of the vessel to only 4 days.
Learn more about our simple scrubber system and discover how
we realized a unique modular retrofit approach on Board of the
Stena Scotia. You will have the chance to see and experience our
solution on board of the vessel.

For more information on our scrubber system visit:

Join us in Rotterdam at Europort 2017

From 7 - 10 November 2017 Europort, organised in the world port city of Rotterdam, will be the international maritime meeting place for innovative technology and complex shipbuilding.
Together with Damen Shipyards we would like to help you finding the most simple solutions for your scrubbing challenges. Please meet us at boot Nr. 7310.

VDL Groep to reduce ship emissions

September 2017

Following on from the electrification of heavy duty mobility in the form of cars, buses, automated guided vehicles and tractor units, VDL Groep intends to continue help reducing the emissions from means of transport. The family-owned international industrial business headquartered in Eindhoven will now be supplying systems for ships that comply with the latest international requirements on the emission of harmful substances. For this project, VDL has entered into a joint venture with AEC Maritime, the Eindhoven-based specialist in air cleaning, that develops and markets filter systems for ships. These so-called scrubbers filter the sulphur particles and other components from the exhaust gases emitted by ship engines.

The new collaboration between the two companies, operating under the name VDL AEC Maritime, was launched on 1 September 2017. VDL AEC Maritime is based in Eindhoven. Scrubbers are nothing new to VDL. VDL KTI in Mol (Belgium) manufactured and supplied the first scrubbers in 2013 to AEC Maritime, the company that holds the patent for the scrubber system. In this particular technology, seawater is used to clean and store the environmentally burdensome particles on the ship. The scrubber is installed in the vessel’s funnel. The exhaust gas from the engine enters the scrubber at the bottom end, eventually leaving the scrubber at the top, as clean, white smoke. Water droplets in the scrubber absorb sulphur, soot, ash and oil particles, and the contaminated water in the system is subsequently cleaned on board the vessel.

Advantage Damen Green Solutions (part of Damen Shipyards Group) will be responsible for the complete installation of the scrubbers, subject to a collaboration agreement entered into between VDL AEC Maritime and the Gorinchem-based ship building group. “The biggest advantage of this new joint venture is that it offers customers one-stop shopping for the entire process from sale and engineering, through to production and installation of the scrubbers,” explained Kevin Kuijs, director of VDL AEC Maritime. Co-owner and technical director Marcel Clephas at AEC Maritime added, “The efficiency and solid financial basis offered by VDL Groep are essential for the growth of our business. Moreover, we are no strangers to one another: VDL KTI is already responsible for manufacturing our scrubbers.”

Requirements Since 2015, ship operators have been faced with stricter requirements governing the emissions from environmentally burdensome fuel oil. Starting in 2020, new standards will apply to all waters, worldwide. From that date onwards, sulphur emissions of between 0.1 and 0.5 percent will be permitted, as compared to the 3.5 percent vessels are currently allowed to emit. Against the background of this new regulation, VDL Groep is confident in the market potential for scrubbers: worldwide, around 70,000 ships will be required to restrict their emissions. One alternative is cleaner fuel oil, with a higher cost of consumption. Fitting a filter system is a more cost-saving alternative. Depending on the size of the vessel and the price of oil, the payback time for the investment is around two years.

VDL Groep

Strength through cooperation. That is the cornerstone of VDL Groep, the international industrial family business headquartered in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. The company was founded in 1953 by Pieter van der Leegte. Initially VDL Groep specialised in metalworking. Later the portfolio was expanded to include plastics processing, the development, manufacture and sales of buses and coaches, and high‑tech subcontracting for the semiconductor industry and others. Today VDL Groep is a major player in the subcontracting and semi-finished products sectors, produces its own finished products, such as suspension systems, is active in automotive factory automation, builds heat exchangers and container handling systems, and the family business owns VDL Nedcar in Born, the Netherlands' only large passenger car assembly factory, which carries out assembly line production of cars for third parties. VDL Groep innovates through a combination of craftsmanship, entrepreneurship and high‑quality machinery. The group of companies combines the clout of a multinational with the flat organisation and open, informal working atmosphere of a family business where priority is given to growth opportunities and continuity. VDL Groep operates with approximately 16,000 employees in 19 countries. The group comprises 93 operating companies, each with its own speciality, which work together intensively. The combined annual turnover in 2016 was 3.2 billion euros. In November 2016, after 50 years of entrepreneurship, Wim van der Leegte passed the reins of the family business to the management team, which includes his three children Pieter, Jennifer and Willem. Willem van der Leegte has succeeded his father as President and CEO of VDL Groep. Wim van der Leegte has joined the Supervisory Board.

Additional information:

Damen Green Solutions introduces new Modular Approach for retrofitting scrubbers

June 2017

Cuts time spent in dock from weeks to days

Damen Green Solutions (DGS) in partnership with Damen Shiprepair & Conversion (DSC) and AEC Maritime is trialling a new technique for retrofitting scrubbers. Designated the Modular Approach, this new process is designed to cut the time that a vessel typically needs to spend in dock from two or more weeks to just a few days. This dramatic reduction in downtime, in combination with a more cost-efficient, certified scrubber, will be welcomed by ship owners and operators. The first installation of this type is already underway for the RoRo cargo vessel Stena Scotia.

The key to achieving this sharp fall in downtime for the vessel is maximising the amount of preparatory and manufacturing work that can be completed before the vessel arrives in the dock. This happens in two parallel processes. In one of these, the scrubbers and their supporting systems are fitted into two prefabricated modules while still in the workshop. The first module contains the scrubber plus all the necessary piping and electronics. The second houses all the auxiliary equipment including the pumps, heat exchanger and separators. These can then be tested and optimised in advance of the actual installation.

At the same time, preparatory works are undertaken on board the vessel at times agreed with the ship that do not interfere with its scheduled operations. In the case of the Stena Scotia, the preparations on board, including steelwork and pipe-fitting, will take place over a number of weekends during routine overnight stopovers.

The result of the prefabrication process plus preparation works means that when the ship does finally arrive at a Damen yard, the technical team can focus on the final stage of the retrofit process; attaching and linking up the two, fully operational modules to a ship that is ready and prepared to receive them. This last stage represents the third module of the operation.

Damen Green Solutions, the arm of the Damen Shipyards Group responsible for developing and implementing low-emissions and environmentally-friendly solutions, has oversight of the entire process including commissioning and training. It does this in close coordination with Damen Shiprepair & Conversion (DSC) and, in the case of Stena Scotia, Damen Shiprepair Rotterdam.

“With the need to access the vessel during its regular operations to undertake the preparations, it is vital to work very closely with the owner and crew to make the hours available as productive as possible,” says project manager Stef Loffeld. “Fortunately, DSC’s Harbour & Voyage teams are expert at working efficiently and unobtrusively when a ship is still in an operational mode. We also cooperate closely in the engineering phase with AEC, the suppliers of the scrubbing systems, to optimise the installation of the various components for maximum efficiency and operability. The result is a fast and effective installation with minimum downtime.”

Marcel Karsijns, Director of Damen Green Solutions, commented: “The combination of AEC’s simple yet effective scrubbers and Damen’s innovative installation approach significantly reduces up-front costs and reduces the payback period of the investment. We expect this solution to receive strong support in the market.”

Jurriën de Vries, sales director of AEC Maritime, concluded; “The close co-operation between Damen and AEC has resulted in this new modular approach for retrofitting SOx scrubbers. This is yet another example of the AEC philosophy; ‘SOx scrubbing made simple’.”