Reliable, economical engine starting for ACBL

Markets: Case Studies for the Marine market
Application: Inland MarineLocation: USA

American Commercial Barge Line use diesel engines on their barges to power vertical lift pumps. The reliability of this equipment is key as it is used to load and unload cargo. If a workboat’s loading equipment fails at the dockside they receive an immediate $10,000 fine.

If that failure is prolonged it can also result in the customer having to halt production if they can’t get their stock from the barge.

American Commercial Barge Line

ACBL were faced with two major concerns:

Temperature extremes affecting reliability

American Commercial Barge Line transport cargo across the entire U.S. inland waterway system which runs from Texas to Minnesota. This means they’re working in temperatures between -23°F to 100°F (-30°C to +40°C). Their existing starting systems would often struggle for reliability in colder temperatures.

Risk of pollution

American Commercial Barge Line were also concerned about the risk of pollution from their existing hydraulic systems. They were worried that hydraulic fluid could leak from the hoses and fittings.

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) impose heavy fines if any pollution enters the inland waterway. Barge operators may be assessed a Class I penalty of up to US$10,000 (£7,000) per violation (up to a maximum of US$25,000 (£17,500)), or a Class II penalty of up to US$10,000 (£7,000) per day of violations (up to a maximum of US$125,000 (£87,000)).

hydraulic and spring starting systems 850x280x72

The Solution

IPU’s spring starters are a perfect solution to American Commercial Barge Line’s pollution concerns on engines up to 12 litres. They don’t require any hydraulic fluid so there’s no risk of pollution. They offer:

  • Guaranteed starting – Spring starters are unaffected by shutdowns, damp, humidity, cold or heat. They even work after full immersion in water.
  • Space and weight saving – Spring starters are incredibly compact. Starting at only 12kg they are less than half the weight of electric starters.
  • Ease of use – Spring starters are a direct ‘bolt-on’ alternative to electric starters. They can even be fitted while the workboat is out on the water.

IPU’s hydraulic starting systems provided American Commercial Barge Line with guaranteed starting for diesel engines up to 80 litres.They are unaffected by temperature extremes as well as offering:

  • Unbeatable reliability – Hydraulic energy can be stored indefinitely. After discharge, it can be quickly and easily re-charged via a hand pump or engine recharge.
  • Quick delivery and easy installation – IPU can deliver complete systems so you can ‘fit-and-forget’. No specific technical expertise is required.
  • Low maintenance – Hydraulic starting systems are enclosed. Internal components are immersed in oil, protecting them from adverse conditions.