Watchkeeping Duties for Marine Engineers
A watch keeper should always be aware of the normal working parameters of each and every machine on-board ship. The check points given below to be to ensure satisfactory operation of all machineries in engine room.
- Regular checking inspection, and monitoring of all machinery parameters (system pressures, temperatures, settings, alarm conditions, levels of tanks). Any deviations from normal deviations to be checked and corrected. Above to be recorded hourly and mean value to be entered in the engine room log book.
- Conditions of hull exterior, weather, loading of vessel should be borne in mind while comparing measured values of main engine parameters, in case of comparison with test bed/ sea trial values. Important parameters are exhaust temperatures, load index, scavenge air temperature and pressure, turbocharger speed, etc. Quality (calorific value) of fuel to be taken to account for efficiency calculations.
- Check control valves in oil & water circuits for proper operation. Reset if required. In case of sudden drop, this may lead to alarm state and engine stoppage. Check temperature drop across all heat exchangers.
- Always adjust valve settings so that there is no sudden change – the thermal gradient should be as slow and gradual as possible. FOR EXAMPLE IDEAL TEMPERATURE FOR SCAVENGE AIR COOLER IS 17 DEGREE CELSIUS BETWEEN SW INLET AND AIR OUTLET.
- Drain the scavenge cooler frequently considering humidity. In case too much water is being drained, check whether it is seawater or freshwater. In the former case the cooler may be leaking. Air outlet temp should be above dew point, to prevent rusting.
- Check drains of piston rod stuffing box for leaks. This will give an indication of the condition of stuffing box seal & scraper rings.
- Check cylinder oil flow, adjust if required.
- Feel crankcase doors frequently. Listen and familiarize normal crankcase sounds.
- Drain day tank and settling tank off water and sludge frequently.
- Check Fuel oil temperature at the tanks, centrifuges, fuel oil end heater outlet and adjust for correct values so that viscosity is maintained. Check steam flow in heating coils and tracing steam circuits. (Draining of trapped condensate).
- Ensure that all cooling water circuit air vents are properly vented.
- Check all filters for pressure drop. If found excessive, change over to stand by filter and clean.
- Check all oil levels.
- Check pressure drop across scavange air coolers (air and water sides).
- Check all piping for leaks. Report and take necessary action.
- Cam shaft, fuel pump and its drive to be checked.
- Check jacket cooling water, piston cooling oil or water, nozzle cooling oil or water return for contamination – if found, report and take corrective action.
- Feel main starting air pipe for heating, if found hot, engine to be stopped and faulty valve and its flame trap to be replaced.
- Door gaskets, seals, etc. of all machinery to be checked for leaks.
- Rain air bottles frequently
- Check boiler water level, pressure, firing mechanism, feed tank and hot well levels. Blow the gauge glasses once in a day. Operate soot blowers once in a watch.
- Carry out boiler and engine water tests as per standing orders
- A/c and domestic fridge, all temperatures, pressures, levels, etc. to be checked. Check tightness of driving v-belts, tighten if required.
- Check domestic freshwater and seawater hydrophore systems. Charge air if necessary.
- Inspect steering flat, check pressures, leaks if any, oil tank and bilge levels, motor amperes.
- All running pumps to check for noise, motor temperature and amperes, gland/seal leak, vibration, suction/discharge pressures.
- Inspect centrifuges (leaks, sounds, oil level, motor amperes, vibration level, any outstanding alarm condition). Lo samples to analyse as per standing orders.
- Record engine revolutions by counter readings, machinery running hours, calculate hours run after installation and last overhaul to be recorded. Arrival fuel oil and lube oil ROB(Reserve On-Board) to be recorded.
- Water washing of turbocharger and chemical cleaning of air coolers as per second engineer's orders.
- Sewage treatment plant functioning to be monitored and modified as per requirement.
- Oily water separator operation, fuel oil transfer operation, bunkers, etc. to be entered in the oil record book.
Safety Devices Incorporated with Main Engine
Cylinder head relief valve
Relieves combustion chamber of excess combustion pressure.
Crankcase door relief valve
Relieves excess pressure in crankcase caused by hot-spot action.
Scavenge space relief valve
Relieves excess pressure in spaces caused by overheating, fire etc.
Fuel system relief valve
On manifold and fuel pumps, relieves excess pressure caused by cold oil etc.
Starting air line relief devices
Valves and/or bursting discs to prevent starting air line explosions.
Turning gear interlock
It does not allow the engine to be started while t/gear is engaged.
Running direction interlock
It does not allow the engine to be started while the telegraph and start air control are not in alignment.