Supported by nearly three decades of experience within the marine refrigeration sector, Oceanic Technical Solutions was established in December 2014 to provide high quality refrigeration service, inspection, compressor overhauls, spare parts and refrigerant retrofits to all kinds of vessels on a global scale. Having not only developed internationally renowned expertise from decades of working for Wilhelmsen Ship Service and other world leading refrigeration organisations, the UK headquartered company has also earned a thorough understanding of its customer’s business concerns.
“Although we are a fairly new company, having been founded in December 2014, we are not new to the industry. In fact, with Dave Lloyd joining Oceanic Technical Solutions as our Technical Director in January 2015, we have 28 years’ experience of marine refrigeration expertise from his time working for Dobsons, Unitor and later Wilhelmsen Ship Service. At one point Wilhelmsen had a large global coverage when it came to refrigeration engineers, however, for one reason or another, a decision was made to reduce the size of that service network. A number of these engineers now work solely for us, while others are working for us on a subcontractor level as well. We have been fortunate to acquire the skills of these quality engineers; the challenge going forward will be replicating this quality,” begins Rob Chesters, Managing Director at Oceanic Technical Solutions.
With more than 20 years’ experience in the international maritime sector, Rob is keen to use his skills in service operations, sales and marketing, business management and business development to further establish Oceanic Technical Solutions as a globally renowned refrigeration specialist that is fully prepared to meet customer demand. “Based upon where we saw market trends and customer requirements, we segmented the business into five business areas refrigeration inspections, refrigeration compressor overhauls, refrigeration spare parts and equipment, refrigerant retrofits and compliance and general refrigeration services,” explains Rob.
No matter how challenging a customer’s requirement, Oceanic Technical Solution’s expert team is capable of finding the optimum solution; ready and available, its engineers can fly out from the company’s service hubs in Europe and Singapore to ensure a fast response. “Our marketplace is entirely global,” says Rob. “In fact, we have just signed a two-year service agreement with MOL LNG Transport (Europe) Ltd to service its fleet of 15 LNG vessels on an annual basis; this includes a complete inspection of each vessel’s system and a full analysis and leak testing of the plant.”
In more detail, one way the company can prevent plant downtime, lost provisions and, in some cases, lost cargo and off hire charges is through its compressor overhauls service. With specialists available in strategic locations, Oceanic Technical Solutions provides schedules and guidelines for overhauling even the most complex screw and reciprocating compressors. This service includes a complete strip down and clean of the compressor as well as a thorough check for damage; following this, all tolerances are recorded and checked in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations.
In addition, Oceanic Technical Solutions provides refrigeration inspections to customers with the aim of driving down refrigerant consumption and introducing a preventative plant maintenance ethos, which is focused on helping customers deal with the next phase of environmental laws and regulations with regards to refrigerant gases. Indeed, since the phase out and complete ban of CFC Refrigerants more than a decade ago, and subsequent ban on HCFC refrigerants such as R22 from January 2015, attention has shifted towards HFC Gases with particular focus on high global warming potential (above GWP 2500).
“Approximately 75 per cent of the world’s fleet is using HFC refrigerants such as R404A & R507 which are the focus of the latest reduction of High GWP refrigerants placed on the market. This reduction has already started, so what you will see now is that the cost of that refrigerant will dramatically escalate. Furthermore, from January 2020, there will be a service ban on plants that contain those refrigerants, which means it won’t necessarily be illegal to have those plants, but it will be illegal to work on those plants and illegal to top up. This regulation is just four years away and most vessels are going to need to be retrofitted to a more environmentally friendly refrigerant,” explains Rob. To ensure compliance, fully qualified and experienced engineers at Oceanic Technical Solutions can evaluate a system and recommend the most economic solution for changing the system refrigerant while maintaining performance and meeting environmental legislation.
Proud to understand the needs of its customers, Oceanic Technical Solutions has also used its long-term knowledge to develop a complete solution for a range of multi-brand spare parts and accessories. Furthermore, if the required product is no longer available, Oceanic Technical Solutions is able to offer an alternative solution.
Although still in its infancy, the future looks positive for Oceanic Technical Solutions as it continues to deliver expert advice and high quality solutions to customers operating in a challenging and increasingly environmentally focused industry. “Moving forward, we will target our skill set to ship owners globally whilst sharing our expertise with the more complex systems found onboard LNG vessels and refrigerated cargo ships. Another key focus for us is to raise awareness on regulations while also helping our customers to reduce the amount of refrigerants they are consuming,” concludes Rob.