Popular on ships where dynamic positioning operations take place – such as during the installation of sea-based wind turbines – an azimuth thruster is a configuration of marine propellers that can be rotated 360 degrees around the vertical axis. The unit provides propulsion, steering and positioning thrust for much better manoeuvrability compared to the traditional fixed propeller and rudder system. Retractable thrusters can be retracted into the hull when not in use, thereby reducing the ship’s drag.
The drives for the unit are supplied partly with hydraulic or water lines, but primarily with motor cables, while they are extended and retracted from the ship’s hull. In a video, igus demonstrates how energy chains effectively manage the cables and hoses involved, while keeping the installation space small. The low weight, as well as the corrosion resistance of igus energy chains, give clear advantages over their steel counterparts.
Energy chain systems and cables from igus withstand the toughest environmental conditions. On drilling vessels or on oil rigs, they ensure a reliable supply of energy. To watch the video in full, please visit www.igus.co.uk/retractablethrusters.