You are on page 1of 4

Andrew Cooke 05ETOB

Marine Electrical Systems

Marine Generation & Distribution Systems


Explain why marine electrical generation and distribution employs an insulated

The main reason that marine electrical systems employ an insulated earth is that if an
earth fault occurred on one line then the piece of equipment will not trip. Earth faults
can be caused by insulation failure or a loose wire. If a second earth fault occurs on a
different line a short circuit will result, causing the equipment to trip.

Describe with the aid of a circuit diagram how earth faults are monitored using
In 3 phase distribution 3 indicating lamps are used. They are connected in star, with
the star point being earthed. If an earth fault occurs on one of the lines that lamp in
that line will appear dim. The intensity of the light indicates the degree of the earth
fault. Below is a circuit diagram of earth fault monitoring lamps:

Define High Voltage In Marine Systems:

High voltage in a marine system is any voltage that is 1000v (1kv) or larger. Typical
marine applications are 3.3Kv, 6.6Kv and more rarely 10Kv.

Explain the basic idea of using a Neutral Earthing Resistor (NER) with marine
A neutral earth resistor is there to limit the maximum earth fault current that could
be produced if the generator had an earth fault. It is connected between the star point
of the generator and earth. The fault currents created could be massively larger than
the generators designed full load current rating. If this current is not controlled then

Andrew Cooke 05ETOB

serious damage by overheating the winding insulation. The earth fault current is
determined by the size of the NER.


Explain two reasons why it is important to locate and clear earth faults:
• If there is an earth fault on one line then due to the insulated neutral the piece
of equipment will not trip. If another earth fault occurs on another line then a
short circuit is created which will cause the piece of equipment to trip, if this
is an essential piece of equipment it could endanger the ship/machinery. This
is one reason why it is important to locate and clear earth faults.
• Secondly if another earth fault occurs in the same line then it becomes
increasingly difficult to locate the earth faults.

Explain the main advantage of using HV for marine installations:

The main advantage of using HV for marine installations is it gives greater power for
lower currents compared to LV applications. This results in being able to use smaller
gauge cable due to the lower currents, and in turn the build cost of a ship would be
greatly reduced.

Investigate the IIE 6th Edition of the regulation for installation of electrical equipment
on ships, and summarise the regulations regarding earthing of high voltage


Distribution Diagram on separate sheet

Explain the likely connections for primary and secondary three phase transformer
The 3 phase transformers will most commonly comprise of 3 single phase
transformers. If one of the single phase transformers fails then the 3 phase output will
remain but at reduced power. The primary and secondary coils will normally be
connected in delta-delta so if one single phase transformer is to fail then it becomes an
open or ‘v’ delta-delta transformer. This is an advantage as the output is not be lost
and will still supply machinery i.e. they will not stop. Also only one phase will need
isolating to repair the transformer apposed to the solid 3 phase core type, where the
whole transformer needs to be isolated to be repaired.

Andrew Cooke 05ETOB

Identify two examples of essential and two examples of non-essential services:

Essential services are those that are required in the event of an emergency.
Essential services:
• Steering gear is classed as an essential service aboard a ship. In the event of
power loss from the main switch board then the steering gear should still be
able to function, when the emergency generator is supplying. Therefore one of
the hydraulic oil pump motors will be supplied by the emergency switch
• Fire prevention is classed as an essential service. If power is lost from the
main board the emergency fire pump should still be able to operate. The
emergency fire pump motor will be supplied by the emergency switch board.

Non-Essential services:
• Air conditioning is classed as a non-essential service. If power is lost from the
main board then the air condition will stop, so is only supplied by the main
• Sewage system would be classed as a non-essential service.


Use your own symbol to show where earth lamps would be fitted:

Explain the equipment required at a shore connection point:

The shore connection box must have suitable terminals to accept shore supply cable
including an earth terminal to earth the ships hull. It must also have a circuit breaker
or an isolator switch and fuses to protect the cable connecting the box to the main
switch board. It should also contain a data plate giving details of the ship’s electrical
system, showing the methods of connecting the cable. A volt meter and phase-
sequence indicator is fitted, to indicate the correct supply phase sequence. When the
right lamp is bright and left one dark the sequence is correct. An alternative is a P.S.I.
that consists of a rotary pointer driven by a small 3 phase induction motor, the
direction the pointer turns shows if the phase sequence is correct.
Below is a circuit diagram of the connection box:

Andrew Cooke 05ETOB