Canadian Coast Guard ships getting ABB upgrades

Canadian Coast Guard’s medium icebreakers and high endurance multi task ships are getting a life-extension modernization carried out by Swiss-Swedish company ABB.

Of the 14 vessels in operation, 10 are receiving the upgrades.

Design and work supply on first of the ten vessels, CCGS Pierre Radisson, is already underway and will be completed in July 2017.

From then on, as ABB outlined, the remaining nine vessels will be completed in following order: CCGS Ann Harvey (2018), CCGS Des Groseilliers (2018), CCGS Sir William Alexander (2018), CCGS Martha L. Black (2018), CCGS Henry Larsen (2019), CCGS Edward Cornwallis (2019), CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier (2020), CCGS George R. Pearkes (2020), CCGS Amundsen (2020).

Three of the vessels equipped with DC-propulsion system are upgraded to utilize latest control technology while maintaining DC-motors and generators.

On the remaining seven vessels ABB will replace the Propulsion Cycloconverter Drives. The Propulsion Control and Monitoring systems will be upgraded in all the vessels with proven marine approved products including Control Levers, Generator Excitation Systems, Dynamic Brake and Excitation Transformers. The replacement work includes all project services from engineering to installation and commissioning.

Medium Icebreakers and High Endurance Multi Task Vessels typically work year round, performing search and rescue, maritime navigational aids, ice breaking, oceanographic studies, patrol and protection of Canada coastline.

In winter, the vessels are assigned to icebreaking and ship escort operations at Canadian waters, St. Lawrence Seaway and Great Lakes. Every summer CCGS Amundsen is charted by a scientific consortium and makes her way to the Canadian Arctic to conduct a wide variety of scientific missions. While in the Arctic, the vessels also serve as a primary search and rescue unit and provides support to scientific missions when possible.

“These modernizations are a reflection of ABB’s long history of working with icebreakers but also our dedication to utilizing new technologies,” said Nathalie Pilon, Country Manager of ABB Canada.

The modernizations will be conducted while the vessels are afloat, under the Canadian Coast Guard’s custody, and docked at their home ports. The installation is done in cooperation with a Canadian installation company specialized to electrical systems in ships.