On Wednesday 15 January, US President Barack Obama made a visit to Vacon's Research and Development Centre in Durham, North Carolina, USA, where he came into contact with an example of IHC Merwede's advanced equipment. During his tour of the impressive facility, the President was shown a pilot version of the company's Medium Voltage (MV) Drive.
IHC Merwede has designed the MV Drive in cooperation with Vacon, which develops, manufactures and sells AC drives and inverters on a global basis. The MV Drive is built by IHC Merwede in Sliedrecht, The Netherlands, before being tested by the Finnish company's American subsidiary.
The 4.16 kilovolt drive has been specially designed for marine applications and can withstand heavy vibration, dirty working environments and high temperatures. The water-cooled frequency converter is available in a range of 1 to 11 megawatts, and will be applied to dredging and offshore vessels by IHC Merwede. The drive is able to vary the speed of electric motors in an energy-efficient manner.
IHC Motion Control & Automation's Director Joti Hakkert said: "We offer integrated, customised and innovative systems – such as the MV Drive – to the maritime industry in conjunction with our global network. It's an honour for everyone associated with IHC Merwede that our innovative product was on display at our partner Vacon's Research and Development Centre during this important event."
IHC Merwede's COO Bram Roelse added: "The IHC Merwede group is working at the cutting edge of technology across a broad range of developments in the dredging, mining and offshore markets. The link to Vacon is one of the initiatives that help us to reinforce our position as the technology innovator."