When talking to Paul Jindra, the founder of Energy Conversions about marine ventilation systems it’s obvious that he clearly knows his business. That’s not surprising because over the years he and his company have developed and manufactured a range of superb marine components, engineered and purpose built to endure the rigours of a life spent at sea.
His company produces and supplies a range of fans, pumps, boat parts and accessories. There’s no doubt that all products designed by the company have gained a reputation for excellence due to their robust, corrosion resistant properties and durability in a testing marine environment.
I asked Paul about his marine ventilation systems and in particular the choice between AC or DC power. Understandably, he firmly believes in the merits of his own DC powered systems but never the less, Paul’s argument in favour of DC power for marine applications makes a lot of sense. As he says.
“Let’s say you drive a Mercedes with all the bells and whistles and you discover that the electricity used to run the lights, wipers and air conditioning is sourced from an AC generator stored in the boot. As ridiculous as that sounds you may well have to deal with that situation when you buy a new boat.
Yet your marine engine is powered by a DC alternator and a battery system much like the Mercedes which of course doesn’t need an extra AC generator, and likewise, your boat is capable of supplying all your shipboard power needs.
The only possible reason for having an AC generator would be to power equipment for onshore applications and even then, access to onshore AC power can be limited. With ship board AC generators there are also safety factors to consider.” Paul’s fans will run on shore power using standard battery charger that is installed in every vessel.
As Paul continues to explain.
“All our marine equipment including our ventilation fans are designed to operate on DC power and apart from the practical benefits DC power is much safer. AC equipment operates at potentially lethal voltages such as 115, 240 or 440 volts and in a marine environment this can be hazardous.
- See below:) Galvanic corrosion can also be a real problem due to the need to earth the AC wiring to the DC wiring for safety. AC generators occupy space which you can ill afford and AC powered motors have a low starting torque. With that extra generator weight required it increases your fuel consumption and reduces running efficiency. This particularly impacts when you have inherently, inefficient single phase AC powered motors to run.
Galvanic corrosion can also be a real problem due to the need to earth the AC wiring installation to Earth. On the other hand, DC wiring in our fans is floating above ground and if its earthed with the negative pole of the DC system, the equipment will handle both installations. With that extra ………………….. The safety AC installations are much more stringent and costly than the DC ones.
At Energy Conversions we can advise and provide solutions on ways to optimise AC powered equipment safely if it is necessary and reduce its impact on efficiency.
As for ventilation, single phase AC power is noisy and expensive. Large ventilation fans are difficult to accommodate and can be inefficient so you can end up with a ventilation system that is simply not up to the job.
Our DC powered fans will not corrode in an internal or external ‘salty’ environment and unlike AC can operate at variable and high speeds. They are also designed so that, if at all necessary they can easily be repaired.”
Paul Jindra makes a compelling argument and the design quality of his products is reinforced by international recognition. Paul’s brushless, high power marine fan was nominated for a DAME award by METS in 2004. It ranked the DC powered fan amongst the world’s leading marine products. METS is held in Amsterdam and it is the number one international design competition.
Meanwhile Energy Conversions has enjoyed a good relationship with Hart Marine over the past few years and recently supplied various components including fans for two new pilot boats constructed by Hart Marine and purchased by Flinders Ports.
Paul Jindra is passionate about improving on-board performance and efficiency within the marine sector and continues to expand his horizons in international waters with his products now in demand in Italy and Holland as well as other countries around the globe.
For more information about Energy Conversions and its wide range of high quality marine products call Paul on (03) 8872 6555 or visit:www.jecmarine.com