Alewijnse provided the Polaris with a fully redundant installation. This concerns a Pilot Station Vessel (PSV) for the Dutch Pilotage Service. This was followed by the construction of two more vessels. They will be positioned between 5 and 10 miles off the coast. From this vessel, the pilots will be transferred to smaller pilot vessels (the gigs) to go to the incoming sea-going vessels. The Polaris can accommodate a total of 45 persons, including the crew.
Port and starboard installations
Pilot Station Vessels are no ordinary ships, not even for the experienced maritime professionals of Alewijnse. Polaris has the redundancy of a warship and the luxury of a yacht. This redundancy formed the basis for the design. The installations on the port and starboard sides can run completely independently from each other. If the installation on one side fails, the ship will continue to function normally. Generators, main switchboards, control panels, energy distribution: everything has been duplicated.
Challenge: cable routing
One of the challenges for the team of Alewijnse was the limited space that is available on a ship. How do you create a duplicate routing for the cabling? How do you ensure that the fire barrier complies with the A60 standard? A lot of effort was put into this. We outlined the main routes. The routing was further elaborated during the installation. Everything is now included in the drawing; this will make it a lot easier for the next two vessels. Incidentally, the first cables were already laid when the Polaris was nothing more than two rusty hulls. Before the fore and aft end of the vessel were welded together, Alewijnse laid the cables under the main distributors. This is much easier than installing them at a later stage when the panels are already in place.
User-friendly Alewijnse Vessel Automation System
Perhaps the flagship of the Polaris is the automation system: Alewijnse Vessel Automation System (ALVAS). One can see on board how the crew control all the installations using ALVAS. We further developed the functionality in conjunction with the shipyard and the Pilotage Service. In addition, we updated the layout. The system is extremely user-friendly. We integrated the operation, visualisation, signalling and alarms of different installations. This includes pumps, valves, exterior lighting, fire alarm, ventilation and automation.