Thermex have developed a new compact heat exchanger for Gyroscopic Stabilizer manufacturer Seakeeper.
Seakeeper, a manufacturer of small ship stabilizers based in the USA, first approached Thermex in April 2015 with an enquiry to supply header tank heat exchangers for a new product they were developing. After 18 months of design work and testing; a completely new design of header tank heat exchanger was ready for production.
Heat exchangers combined with expansion tanks are often found on marine propulsion engines, with standard mounting points and few space restrictions. So when Thermex were asked about designing a compact heat exchanger for a gyro stabilizer to include room for expansion, it was certainly a challenge unlike one that had been faced before. The thermal calculations made by Thermex, based on operating data provided by Seakeeper, suggested that it would be possible to achieve the required performance using a specially designed high performance tube stack. By also designing the housing from scratch, the engineers at Thermex were able to optimise the design for maximum performance within the small space envelope limits.
To put this theory to the test a small batch of fabricated prototypes were delivered to Seakeeper for fit and function testing. The prototypes proved that the design was feasible, providing a level of performance in line with the calculated predictions. Following this the design was finalised and pre-production samples were delivered by Thermex for testing in August 2016. In January 2017 Thermex will be delivering the first production batch of heat exchangers to Seakeeper in time for their first deliveries of the Seakeeper 3 to their customers in the spring.
Much of the success of this project is due to the regular and effective communication between the expert engineers at Seakeeper and the experienced design engineers at Thermex. Weekly phone conferences ensured constant progress and regular updates, reducing the time these projects normally take to come to fruition.
Seakeeper will be launching their new Seakeeper 3 model at the METS Trade Show in November, 2016 (stand 10.611) The heat exchanger will also be displayed on the Thermex stand (01.453) along side the rest of the Thermex range.
“The Seakeeper 3 is an exciting next step in our ongoing goal to bring stabilization to the boating mainstream by offering our innovative technology on smaller and smaller vessels,” said Andrew Semprevivo, Seakeeper’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “By offering an optimized solution for boats between 30- and 40-feet long, Seakeeper is offering stabilization solutions to a whole new range of boats for the first time. It truly is our biggest, smallest thing yet.”
The Seakeeper 3 is the smallest and lightest Seakeeper unit yet and the first to run exclusively on 12-volt DC power with no need for a generator or AC input.
Orders for the Seakeeper 3 can be placed now, and the units will begin shipping in Spring 2017
Founded in 2003 by a successful entrepreneur and a naval architect, Seakeeper is the global leader in marine stabilization. Seakeeper’s innovative technology changes the boating experience by eliminating up to 95 percent of all boat roll, the rocking motion that causes seasickness, fatigue and anxiety. Since selling its first gyro in 2008, Seakeeper has developed a growing catalogue of models for an expanding range of boat sizes. Based in California, Maryland, USA, the company has over 125 employees globally, based in the U.S., U.K., Italy, Germany, Dubai and Singapore.