How is it that Adwatec Oy is changing the minds of shipowners and ship operators regarding water cooling systems? “Today, we interviewed Heikki Mustonen, Managing Director of Adwatec Oy. He holds a master’s degree in electrical engineering, as well as an MBA for Helsinki University of Technology (Aalto, TKK)”.

1) Can you summarise the main advantages of water cooling over air cooling for our readers?

“Water is the most efficient element for transferring heat away from the heat source. This allows for very compact power electronics and cooling solutions. Water cooling systems are quiet and require very little maintenance. They are also generally closed systems: the cooling water is isolated from the air, and even in very dirty environments the cooling water remains clean.”

2) Water cooling systems still have risks; could you explain what these risks are and how Adwatec solves them?

“The main risks in a water cooling system are leakage, corrosion, freezing and particles in the cooling liquid. Leakage can be prevented with quality components and proper installation, and detected early with a leak detection system. Corrosion is a major cause of leakage. It can be prevented by selecting the right materials and adding corrosion inhibitors to the coolant. Freezing can occur in colder temperatures, causing pipes and components to burst. Using an antifreeze coolant such as glycol will solve the problem. The particles in the coolant can be removed by using strainers. Adwatec products always include a sight glass to monitor the particle content and clarity of the coolant. In summary, regular maintenance, proper component selection and the use of appropriate additives and technologies are key to effectively mitigating these risks.”

3) A first impression for many unfamiliar with cooling systems is that water could be dangerous for cooling batteries on board ships. What would you tell them?

“If the battery system and its cooling are properly designed, installed and maintained, the risk of water-related accidents is zero. This issue has been widely discussed recently, and there are well thought out practices to get it right. In addition, modern battery designs are modular and thermal runaway is contained within a module.”

4) Adwatec has reduced the size of its systems while increasing their capacity. What are the key components within the water-cooling systems that engineers had to improve to make this possible?

“The main driver has been our advanced manifold design. We have combined many functions in the manifold: a 3-way valve, a shuttle and instrumentation for temperature/flow/pressure measurement. To build this in the traditional way would significantly increase the size of the product. We have been making these products for over 20 years and have gained a lot of experience in product layout options and what is possible.”


Pablo Rodas-Martini

Pablo Rodas-Martini

Pablo Rodas-Martini holds a PhD and an MSc from Queen Mary and Westfield College (renamed Queen Mary College), University of London. Pablo Rodas-Martini is a Contributor to Adwatec.

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