Made for measure

Paul Boughton

Thomas Flauger outlines the key elements for accurate fuel consumption measurement both on- and offshore.

Oil companies handle an enormous amount of oil. Despite this quantity they care much about the fuel they consume. Diesel engines and diesel-generators on oil rigs, tankers, crew-boats and offshore supply vessels hold a great potential to safe fuel and money.

The oil business is international. Companies are in a tough competition. Fuel consumption, fuel theft and environment rules are the reason that the fuel bill dominates the operating costs. To be competitive, the fuel bill must be reduced. Although fuel is an issue in many strategy papers, only few companies use a measurement system which gives fuel the necessary attention.

Human elements are crucial for the success. For leadership somebody needs to have good mind. Listening to the staff is crucial for the success of projects which aim to safe fuel. A manageable investment in a consumption measurement increases the awareness for fuel costs shortly. Just the awareness of fuel consumption saves up to 5 per cent fuel after short time, if an informative display is in the visual field of the operator.

People want to concentrate on their work, not on computer technology. Two things are important for the success of any fuel saving project. First, if lots of data are collected with help of the staff, there has to be something in return. They want to know if they are controlled. It needs to be explained that the situation of the company will be improved to be competitive and to secure jobs. Second, operators must have a chance to argue high consumption values. If the fuel consumption is linked to other values like GPS data, anemometer, engine rpm, tank level, etc, extraordinary operating conditions show up.

The Austrian pump and flow meter manufacturer KRAL AG has more than 15 years of experience in fuel consumption measurement for multiple applications on- and offshore. Like in every measurement device, the measurement element is crucial for accuracy. KRAL manufactures the high precision flow meters themselves. The latest development has a modern graphic display with USB port. Total and average consumption are displayed in big letters.

Operating conditions like consumption per engine, bypass, communication of the electronic components, GPS, etc. are indicated. All measurements can be transferred via USB or e-mail protocol.

Completely new is the installation concept. Pre-assembled mounting plates ensure a fast and low priced installation and start-up. The mounting plates carry the flow meters, bypass, strainer, sensors and CANbus components.

For more information visit

Thomas Flauger is with KRAL AG, Lustenau, Austria.

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