Competitors beat Russia in the field of diesel industry

Certain recession in manufacturing of the ship diesel engines observed in the world in 2001-2002 was overcome and in 2004-2005 there was a sharp increase in the volume of orders, especially in the category of powerful diesel engines (Mitsubishi, МА N B&W, Wärtsilä, MAK, etc.). This is first of all due to the increase of the cargo flow from extracting regions to processing. For Russia with its world’s longest coastal border and sea transport being a paramount part of national economy the market of ship diesel engines is of interest not only for the domestic, but for foreign manufacturers. Practically all foreign diesel firms are working to meet the needs of modern shipbuilding: MTU and MAN B&W (Germany), MaK, Caterpillar, Cummins, GME (USA), Pielstick (France), Iveco (Italy), Wärtsilä (Finland), Sulzer (Switzerland), Mitsubishi, YANMAR and Daihatsu (Japan), Volvo Penta (Sweden), Guascor (Spain), ABC (Belgium), etc.

At the same time it is necessary to note that in the Russian home market the most active are MAN B&W Diesel, Wärtsilä, MAK, Caterpillar, Deutz, MTU. These firms have representations in Moscow, St.-Petersburg and in a number of seaports of Russia. They established direct links with the customers of the ships, design organizations and shipyards. These companies carefully study shipbuilding orders, providing technical support for designing new ships.

A specific niche still available for the foreign firms in the sphere of Russian shipbuilding orders is the ships intended for the operation in the international waters, first of all it concerns Russian fishing fleet. According to the JSC Giprorybflot before 2010 the nation will need to construct 787 large, average and small fishing ships. In view of the specific requirements to the main engines determined by the conditions of the work in the international waters it is planned to order from foreign shipyards such power units, in particular from Wärtsilä (type 20), MAK (type 20), Caterpillar (type 34, 35, 36), Volvo Penta.

Recently General Electric Transportation Systems has become very active in the Russian market. According to Rosbalt this company within five years, since 2004 plans taking 25% of the Russian market of the engines for medium tonnage ships with the deadweight from 1 to 6 thousand tons.

Russia annually builds about 10 ships of similar displacement. Each has one-two main engines and two-four auxiliary engines. Director of the European representation of General Electric Jan Grjuneveld has declared that similar installations are not made in Russia.

After three years of the work in Russia work in May, 2007 GETS held the presentation of its representation on the GE V228 ship diesel engines family in St. Petersburg. There the company provided detailed description of the system of repair and service.

Numerous attempts of some Russian diesel enterprises to create co-production with western firms have not lead to success. Purchase and licensed manufacture of diesel engines did not yield the planned results too. The examples of such unsuccessful attempts in last years were: Cheboksary based JSC Dieselprom refused from licensed manufacturing of MTU engines, BMZ did not manage to make medium RPM engines of the firm Holibi, Gorki Car Plant failed with the development of the manufacture of automobile engines of the Austrian firm "Staer", Autodiesel refused to manufacture of the engines under the license from Iveco. The general tendency is that foreign firms, as a rule, agree on transferring the license documentation on the out-of-date types of engines, moreover, forbidding export of such engines from Russia.

The domestic diesel plant dealing with the development of the manufacture of license engines 6 and 8 ChN 32/40 (firm MAN and B&W) is RUMO, Nizhni Novgorod. Under the license of MAN B&W it makes engines ChN 32/40, in-line, vertical, with turbo-supercharging, powered 2640-3520 kWt, ne=750 rev/min, ge=182 g/kWth. These engines are used as propeller installations for river and sea ships, main and auxiliary diesel-generators on the sea and river fleet.

Certainly, a positive example is the organization of the manufacture under the license of German-Danish company MAN B&W Diesel A/S of powerful low RPM ship engines at BMZ. These engines are two-stroke, cross-head, reverse with turbo-supercharging (DKRN) and with a direct transfer to the propeller blade of the fixed and adjustable step шага. The engines are intended for the installation on the ships of transport and fishery fleets as the main power-plant.

Also it is necessary to note, that due to the liquidation ofthe JSC Russian Diesel the medium RPM licensed engines of the firms MAN and Semt-Pielstik left the Russian market. The same happened with medium RPM engines under the license of Wärtsilä powered 580-7380 kWt at n=720-1000 rev/min due to the liquidation of the JSC Leningrad Diesel Plant. The main type of the imported engines on the river ships were and remain the engines of German SKL of the type 6NVD-26 and Czechoslovak made Skoda. Now these engines passed the limits of their lifetime and require replacing.

JSC Pervomaiskdieselmash and JSC Yuzhdieselmash (Ukraine) may become potential players in the Russian market of ship engines if they raise the quality and technological level of their products. In soviet time these enterprises were active suppliers for Russian shipbuilding and now preserved industrial potential. However, they became uncompetitive and lost the traditional the positions.

Despite of the penetration of the foreign firms into the Russian market of diesel engines, like in soviet time there is a certain shortage of ship diesel engines. Wide use of foreign products proves that. Besides, due to the limited volume of utilization the production capacities of the Russian shipyards the shortage of the ship diesel engines have also a latent nature, as Russia needs the ships, but builds them abroad. Joining the WTO will aggravate the situation in the market of the ship diesel engines having high technical and economic parameters, including on toxicity and noise. On the other hand, the availability of a huge home market is a positive factor facilitating the process of achieving the world’s level of piston engines. There are a lot of reasons for lagging behind; one is obvious – low technological level of the domestic diesel industry. It is necessary to mention that many scientific and technical achievements of the last years both in Russia and abroad which could have essentially raised the level of the domestic diesel technologies, remained not used. Concentrating on only the home market is not a correct direction of the development.

One of the positive examples of the international cooperation in diesel-building is the creation of a new diesel engine for the plant of railway machinery in Qishuyan (China). Designing and introduction of a new diesel engine was given to the well-known Austrian firm AVL from the city of Graz.

Under a contract when designing technologies the opportunities of the existing equipment should be considered. The experimental model of the engine was constructed in Qishuyan. Sketch designing took place in Austria by the experts of AVL and Qishuyan, simultaneously all calculations were made. All working drawings of the engine were made by the engineers of Qishuyan, then they were checked and signed by the experts of AVL. It guaranteed that the Chinese experts completely learned the technologies transferred. Besides, this method of the organization of works turned out effective from the economic point of view.

In Russia Austrian firm AVL List GmbH concluded similar contracts on creating new design of automobile diesel engines with a number of the enterprises: Zavolzhsky Motor Plant, AvtoVAZ, Barnaultransmash. With the participation of AVL List GmbH diesel engine YaMZ-536 corresponding to the requirements of Euro-4 was created.

The peculiarity of these examples is that the CUSTOMER creates a design with own opportunities, on the basis of his own experience, but with the maximum utilization of the scientific foundation and means of the Contractor, in this case AVL List GmbH. Such cooperation is possible and in the sphere of creating modern ship diesel engines.

In general, despite of the active penetration of the foreign firms, like in soviet time, today there is a shortage of ship engines in Russia. Foreign firms work in all sectors of the Russian market of diesel engines:

Most active sales are observed in the niche of medium RPM ship diesel engines made by MAN B&W Diesel, Wärtsilä, MAK, Caterpillar, Deutz, MTU.

There are no activities in the field of license agreements as foreign firms agree only on transferring the documentation on the outdated types of engines. Sales of the licenses for manufacturing ship diesel engines of firm MAN B&W Diesel (RUMO and MBZ) can be regarded as a rare success.

It has not yet been possible to create a joint venture, though the work in this direction has been done already for a long time.

Cooperation in the scientific and technical area is very perspective, but so far it takes place only in the sector of automobile diesel engines. This sector of the market is actively explored by the Austrian firm AVL List GmbH.

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Author`s name Editorial Team