Schaller Automation (SAB) has been active in the field of automation technology for over 60 years and has been developing, producing and selling safety systems for large diesel, gas and dual fuel engines used in ships and power plants worldwide very successfully for more than 40 years. Development, production and administration are located at the company’s headquarters in Blieskastel – with a workforce of around 70. The Schaller Group also has independent companies in the USA, Singapore and China. SAB’s core business is the monitoring of large engines using so-called oil mist detectors. They are used to prevent serious crankcase explosions that can occur as a result of overheating of bearings or other moving parts in the crankcase. Based on decades of experience, SAB can rely on very robust mechatronic safety systems and associated sensors, which are highly reliable and have a high false alarm immunity in the harsh environment of maritime applications. SAB employs engineers and technical staff in the areas of design, firmware/software programming, and electronics hardware layout, and offers application-related research capabilities in its laboratories, such as its own fully-instrumented engine test laboratory with single and two-cylinder engines, the “Test Vessel” that can recreate the crankcase of a large piston engine, climatic test chambers, and an electrodynamic vibration test facility, for evaluating realistic vibration profiles. New sensors and evaluation algorithms can thus be tested in a timely and realistic manner.
This individual project is concerned with the development of a hydrogen-sensitive measurement and monitoring system for analyzing the crankcase atmosphere of modern dual-fuel LNG engines using renewable fuels and increased hydrogen content in natural gas. For this purpose, a hydrogen-sensitive measurement system is being developed on the basis of the methane-trimmed GasMOS sensor developed by Schaller, in order to enable a holistic evaluation of the crankcase atmosphere, as well as to be able to carry out an evaluation of the piston ring-bushing package within the framework of predictive maintenance via an evaluation unit. For this purpose, suitable sensors must be selected, investigated and validated, which are integrated in a modular system according to the expected combustion gas concentration together with suitable evaluation electronics. The technological maturity of the system, after completion of the project, is defined as TRL6. (Demonstrator in operational environment)