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Burckhardt Compression's swift and sustainable solution for a leading shipping company

16th January 2024

In the demanding world of maritime operations, even a minor hiccup can ripple into significant challenges. When a leading shipping company, with a fleet of over 150 vessels offering a complete range of maritime services including the transportation of liquified petroleum gas (LPG), faced a malfunctioning compressor aboard one of its vessels, an expedited solution was needed. Burkhardt Compression’s expertise and deep industry knowledge was utilized to implement a quick and effective solution.

The heartbeat of maritime operations

The compressor is an indispensable component aboard the vessel, tasked with compressing the boil-off gas (BOG) that naturally occurs due to evaporation during transportation. By efficiently managing this BOG, the compressor ensures safe and effective transport of LPG.

In this particular case, a temperature rise in the 2nd-stage cylinder indicated a possible malfunction. Any prolonged malfunction of such a critical component could lead to significant operational delays. In the high-stakes world of maritime operations, such disruptions risk tarnishing the company’s reputation and impacting its bottom line.

A tailored, eco-friendly fix

Upon detecting the temperature rise, the vessel’s operator contacted Burckhardt Compression for assistance and a team of its experts was assigned to analyze the data from the shipping company’s integrated automation system. The analysis showed the cylinder was beyond economic repair and given the urgency due to the tight operational schedule, Burckhardt Compression proposed a sustainable and timely solution: a customized second-hand cylinder from its stock.

The compressor, a Laby® 2K140, operating at 202 kW (270 hp), with a suction pressure of 2.3 bar and a discharge pressure of 18 bar, is often used in this application. The refurbished cylinder, taken from the OEM’s stock, was adapted to fit this application. The cylinder diameter was modified, along with the pipework connections, at Burckhardt Compression’s service center in Winterthur, Switzerland, ensuring a quick delivery and restoration of the compressor’s function.

Speed, sustainability, and seamless collaboration

In the face of operational challenges, Burckhardt Compression’s decision to utilize a second-hand cylinder ensured that there were no operational delays, demonstrating its commitment to timely solutions.

Beyond the immediate need for speed, sustainability was at the forefront of the solution. By choosing a recycled cylinder, Burckhardt Compression showcased an eco-conscious approach, emphasizing the importance of environmental responsibility in today’s maritime operations.

The success of this project was not just due to a product but also the people behind it. Burckhardt Compression’s global network of experts collaborated seamlessly, working in tandem to ensure the delivery of an optimal solution for the pressing compressor issue.

The Technical Superintendent at the vessel’s operator commented, “As a long-standing partner, we very much appreciate the expertise and understanding for our needs and processes of Burckhardt Compression. It could provide a quick solution, completely tailored to our technical requirements, within budget. This is what we call a partnership – a company we can rely on. From the technical discussion, to offer and execution, we are very satisfied with the solution provided.”

Burckhardt Compression’s commitment to delivering timely, sustainable and expertly managed solutions exemplifies how innovative thinking, technical expertise and a focus on sustainability can solve even the most urgent challenges.

Image 1: Original compressor that led to operational challenges.

Image 2: Restoration in progress: The 'new' cylinder finds its place.

Image 3: A secure fit for optimal performance.

About Burckhardt Compression

Burckhardt Compression is the worldwide market leader for reciprocating compressor systems and the only manufacturer and service provider that covers a full range of reciprocating compressor technologies and services. Its customized compressor systems are used in the gas gathering and processing, gas transport and storage, refinery, chemical, petrochemical as well as in the industrial gas and hydrogen mobility and energy sectors. Burckhardt Compression’s leading technology, broad portfolio of compressor components and the full range of services help customers around the world to find the optimized solution for their reciprocating compressor systems. Since 1844, its highly skilled workforce has crafted superior solutions and set the benchmark in the gas compression industry.

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Editorial Contact: Anne-Marie Howe

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Address: Burckhardt Compression AG, Franz-Burckhardt-Strasse 5, P.O. Box 3352, CH-8404 Winterthur, Switzerland