Upgrade & Retrofit for Thruster Control System

Upgrade and retrofit alternatives for control systems

There are three basic upgrade alternatives

  • Saia PCD4/2 to Saia PCD3 conversion kit- Replacement of PLC only
  • Control System upgrade – Saia PCD 3 PLC- New control system with some functionality upgrade
  • Control System upgrade – BruCon 4- New control system with latest Brunvoll BruCon technology- Advanced functional upgrades available

Saia PCD4/2 to Saia PCD3 conversion kit

The conversion kit offers a replacement of the existing PCD2 or PCD4 with only a very small modification of the control system. The replacement unit will fit the existing control cabinet and can be performed by the vessel crew.

The existing obsolete PCD4 or PCD2 PLS are replaced by a PCD3 PLC kit. The replacement is done without any impact to the rest of the control system. Cabinets, wiring, cabling, panels and sensors do not require replacement.

The new PLC offers no new functionality and operation of the system remains unchanged, but the PLC software includes a new and improved software. The upgrade does not require any modification of the pitch feedback system.

The conversion kit is on stock at Brunvoll for fast delivery.

Control System upgrade – Saia PCD3 PLC

All cabinets replaced by new cabinets of same size as old with new Saia PCD3 PLC based control system. New cabinets are equipped with touch screens for alarms/status/operation/configuration.

Pitch feedback is upgraded to a more accurate encoder type (2x4-20mA).

If ship cables are in good condition they can be re-used and no need for new cabling. All connections are arranged to fit existing cables/wiring/terminal details.

The bridge panels are upgraded, all internal signal handling according to 4-20mA and may be arranged according to original dimensions (cut-out). The new panels are equipped with a new lever type and new indicators which may be of combined type for indication of both thrust/load (Deif XDi). Push buttons for operation, lamps with LED for indication.

Touch screen for alarms/monitoring in main panel or ECR (Will require extra cabling) as well as motorised levers may be supplied as options.

Size of panel, type of indicator, type of lever and layout for push buttons rely on customisation/arrangements found necessary for each installation.

Control Cabinets for each thruster on bridge will be arranged with same size as original cabinets.

600x600x200 for tunnel thrusters, 600x800x250 for azimuth thrusters.

Control System Upgrade - BruCon 4

Upgrade the control system to the latest Brunvoll control system. BruCon 4 is a redundant control system and standard for new projects delivered by Brunvoll.

Installing a BruCon 4 system enables options such as Dynamic Position, Condition Monitoring Systems, ECR panel for monitoring and motorized levers.

BruCon 4 utilize local PLC based control systems on each thruster, connected by bus and hardwiring to IPCs for bridge equipment. Bridge equipment is based on touch screen panels and latest generation Brunvoll levers.

System will be fully tested with all components before delivery.

This upgrade is more comprehensive than the first two options and require more modification. New cables and bus connections are required between the thruster rooms and the bridge (hardwired cables, fiber and ethernet) as well as between bridge cabinets and the operating panels in the consoles (hardwired cables, ethernet and Can-bus). The pitch feedback will be upgraded to a 4-20mA unit and new functionality is required for the HPU starter.

Before: center console PCD4
After: center console BruCon-4

End Of Life for Saia PCD2 and PCD4 PLC spare parts

Brunvoll has used Saia PCD4 and PCD2 in our control system since 1990 and up to around 2009. It was then replaced by Saia PCD3.

PCD4 and PCD2 PLC units have been obsoleted from Saia for some time, but Brunvoll has maintained a spares stock. The stock is now at a level where Brunvoll cannot guarantee future availability for PCD2 or PCD4 spare parts.

We are now in a position that a replacement of the control system will be the only option.

Brunvoll recommends upgrading of the control system to avoid future repair issues.

There is no known EOL notification from Saia on PCD3.

SAIA PCD4 control unit

SAIA PCD2 control unit, outside design
SAIA PCD2 control unit, inside design

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Brunvoll RDT-Thruster is ideal for vessels with high demands for comfort, or operate substantial time in DP-mode

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Jim Varmedal

Jim Varmedal

Sales Manager Retrofit, Brunvoll AS

+47 905 11 503

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