The Faculty of Maritime Studies and Transport
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Nautical Studies

Electrical Energy Use on Ship


STCW code requirements of :


Content according to IMO Model course 7.03:

  • Echo-sounders
  • Speed measurement


Content according to IMO Model course 7.04:

  • Steering gear electrical control
  • Power Failure (blackout)
  • Electrical theory
  • Cables
  • Fundamentals of AC
  • Generators
  • Electrical Motors
  • Power Distribution System
  • Insulation
  • Transformers
  • Electrical Motor Starting Methodologies
  • High-Voltage Installations
  • Lighting
  • Safety requirements for working on electrical systems
  • Batteries
  • Detection of Electric Malfunction and Measures to Prevent Damage
  • Fault Protection
  • Fault Location


Additional STCW requirements:

- ability to explain the common cause of a short circuit and how the circuit might be protected

- ability to draw and explains a simple electric circuit

- ability to illustrate how a circuit may be completed by using grounds to a common point

- ability to state that the strength of the current is proportional to the applied voltage.


Basic configuration and operation principles of the following:

  • electrical equipment:
  • generator and distribution systems,
  • preparing, starting, paralleling and changing over generators,
  • electrical motors including starting methodologies,
  • high-voltage installations,
  • sequential control circuits and associated system devices,
  • electronic equipment:

- characteristics of basic electronic circuit elements.

The interpretation of electrical and simple electronic diagrams.

Safety requirements for working on shipboard electrical systems, including the safe isolation of electrical equipment required before personnel are permitted to work on such equipment.

Maintenance and repair of electrical system equipment, switchboards, electric motors, generator and DC electrical systems and equipment.

Detection of electric malfunction, location of faults and measures to prevent damage.

Construction and operation of electrical testing and measuring equipment.


In addition to the minimum explicitly requested STCW content, the program includes:

• Electrostatics: electric charge, electric field.

• Electrodynamics: electrical voltage, electrical circuit, electrical current, basic laws of the electrical circuit.

• Electrical circuit elements: conductors, insulators and insulation resistance; semiconductors: semiconductor diodes and transistors, integrated circuits, power semiconductors.

• Electricity use: electrothermia, electrical lighting and propulsion; electrochemistry: primary and secondary galvanic sources.

• Electromagnetism and electrical induction.

• Generation, transformation and distribution of electricity: DC generator, AC generator, reactive behaviour of circuit elements, reactive current and reactive power, electrical transformer, conductors, switches, fuses and switching elements.

• Three-phase transmission of electricity: three-phase transformer.

• Asynchronous machine: basic design, energy balance, torque characteristics, drive stability, start, speed control.

• Synchronous machine: basic constructions, synchronous reactance, vector diagrams, excitation flow, synchronization.

• Commutational machines: basic structures and circuits, moment characteristics; winding of electric rotary machines.

• Static electricity converters: operation of converters, rectifiers, controlled rectifiers (SCR) and thyristor rectifier (GTO)), inverters.

• Protective grounding of ship's electrical devices, ensuring safety and economy of navigation from the use of electricity point of view.

• Familiarization with the requirements for regular calibration and certification of measuring devices.


Goals and competencies

Students learn and supplement knowledge from basic laws of electricity and their use, with special emphasis on maritime.


Special features:

Implementation of the learning content among others include requirements in accordance with the provisions of the STCW Convention A-II / 1, A-II/2, A III/1, A III/2  and the recommendations of the »Master and Chief Mate (Model course 7.01)« and »Officer in charge of a navigational watch (Model course 7.03), "Officer and charge of an engineering watch (model course 7.04)« International Maritime Organization, London, 2014.

Basic literature

  1. HALL, D. T., Practical marine electrical knowledge, tretja izdaja, Witherby's Seamanship, 2014, ISBN 978 1 85609 623 2.
  2. eOsnove elektrotehnike 1, e-gradivo, Tehniški šolski center Kranj,
  3. JOFFE, Elya B., LOCK, Kai-Sang. Grounds for Grounding, Wiley, 2010, ISBN 978-0- 471-66008-8.