Alfa Laval opens scrubber training centre in China

Malcolm Latarche

Malcolm Latarche · 16 May 2019


As scrubber numbers surge ahead of the impending 2020 fuel deadline, Alfa Laval has inaugurated the Alfa Laval PureSOx Training Centre in Shanghai, China. Focused on the training of commissioning engineers, the new facility will be instrumental in ramping up the skilled workforce prior to the global sulphur cap. But with its full-sized PureSOx scrubber, it will also provide crew training opportunities for customers.

With its full-sized PureSOx scrubber system, the new PureSOx Training Centre gives Alfa Laval autonomy in providing on-the-job training to commissioning engineers. Trainees will no longer have to wait for a suitable vessel and installation but will instead be able to hone their commissioning skills in an environment that is as close to reality as possible. This will ensure that they are fully prepared for the onboard work of bringing customer systems online.

In keeping with this thinking, the design of the open-loop system is based on an existing customer project. However, instead of being connected to an engine, the facility’s scrubber is part of a detailed simulation, in which no exhaust gas is used but values and signals related to the exhaust gas are accurately reproduced. Because the system has all of the real ancillaries, including valves and pumps, it does use a real flow of water, which is recirculated to minimise waste.

“We’ve shortened the scrubber a bit to fit it indoors, and there are plexiglass portholes and internal lighting that allow trainees to see the flow within the scrubber,” said Erik Haveman, Sales Director, Exhaust Gas Cleaning. “But in all other respects, right down to the Alfa Laval Touch Control system, the look, feel and overall experience is exactly what it would be on board.”

Alfa Laval has not only invested heavily in PureSOx manufacturing operations but is also working to further expand its service and training resources in exhaust gas cleaning. As more PureSOx scrubbers are installed to meet the global sulphur cap, skilled local engineers will be required to commission the many systems.

“As the need grows, both the availability and the quality of local knowledge will be essential in meeting it,” said Haveman. “The Alfa Laval PureSOx Training Centre in Shanghai will support both our global efforts and the preparation of commissioning engineers in Northeast Asia.”

Having the PureSOx Training Centre in Shanghai will increase the speed and effectiveness of training Alfa Laval commissioning engineers during the ramp-up phase connected to 2020. “This is an important step in delivering to customers, who depend on us to bring their systems into operation smoothly,” said Haveman.

As a further and ongoing service to customers, the new facility will also be possible to use for crew trainings. The unique setup, which pairs an accurate onboard experience with focus and calm that are seldom found on a real vessel, will be as beneficial for crew learning as it is for Alfa Laval’s own engineers. “We invite all customers to Shanghai, whether for training or simply to see a PureSOx scrubber in person,” said Haveman. “When they visit, it will be our pleasure to show them how we train our own staff to meet their needs.”

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