The family-owned shipyard MTG Dolphin heads toward its future projects with advanced technology and fresh facilities. The company produces specialised vessels for global markets. They trust in PEMA welding automation and have adapted automated and effective processes in their yard, located on the coast of the Black Sea, in Varna.

MTG Dolphin plc has been operating in the shipbuilding and repairing industry since 1991. The company is located in Eastern Bulgaria, at the northern shore of Varna Lake, right in the middle between Varna Ports, with optimal accessibility to the Black Sea.

The shipyard has constantly been developing its manufacturing processes and increasing production capacity. MTG Dolphin first started with repairing works, and today, it is one of the leading shipyards in the Black Sea and Mediterranean Sea region while having vessel customers all over the world.

“This investment in modern technology and automated welding production solution is a part of our bigger future strategy. We look to increase our manufacturing capacity to produce high-quality products and be competitive globally, as 95% of our products are exported”, says Dolphin sales manager Kliment Velinov.

Welcoming new solutions

MTG Dolphin highly values their customers and wants to bring an individual approach to each project and client. The company specialises in highly technological and complex types of vessel sizes of approximately 100 metres, and has recognisable experience in designing and building them for global markets.

The shipyard offers flexibility and is a trusted partner. Investments in functional and efficient facilities were needed to have the capacity to welcome the new projects. Automating processes will also answer the ongoing challenges of the lack of labour in the industry.

“In the coming years, we are focusing to be more efficient in shipbuilding and wanted to invest in advanced technology and the new PEMA production line. The final decision was made during the interactive online welding demonstrations that were held for us privately”, says Velinov.

To MTG Dolphin, Pemamek delivered an automated PEMA 12 x 14 Compact panel line with a One side welding station (OSW), Web mounting portal (WMP), Stiffener welding portal (SWP), and Roller conveyor line. The panel fabrication line is focused especially on thin-plate materials and offers automated material handling and advanced welding processes with user-friendly visual management systems.

Functional quality

As MTG Dolphin is heading for the bigger vessel manufacturing projects in the future, they also need to focus more on the production capacity. Automating the processes improves the quality of panels with a low deformation rate and reduces fitting work for blocks. Optimised processing assembly and welding with clear material flow, give a high throughput capacity.

“With the PEMA panel line, it is possible to produce much bigger sized workpieces. To adopt the new solutions to our processes, we needed to tackle some challenges that occurred in the ramp-up phase. With all the technical support from Pemamek, we were able to reach the targets we had planned”, Velinov says.

For MTG Dolphin, the investment in the PEMA panel line and welding station enables the company to make a shift from semi-automated welding to a fully automated process in the assembly phase, which brings more production efficiency. The new solution also eliminates the bottleneck in the production and now allows the production of much bigger panels.

Results: Efficient and competitive vessel production

The whole process with Pemamek started with conversations about a more optimised welding process since the panels are getting bigger. The aim was to join the plates with the PEMA OSW instead of the old way of welding both sides and turning the panels. The target was to weld efficiently and avoid the panel rotation in the process to have a high-quality final product. Finally, the company decided that they would acquire all three portals to get the production as effective and operational as planned.

“Our company has expansion plans in our future strategy and this investment in PEMA solution was part of the program”, Velinov explains.

The investment in PEMA automation replaces manual work in MTG Dolphin’s production and gives a final product with equal quality. It also means not only time savings, but also effectiveness and better numbers as a result.

“We can already see the benefits. The quality of the welding with PEMA OSW and SWP is very good. We have also managed to use less manpower. For example, we need only four to five men to work with panels instead of a group of ten. Together these investments will able us to reach the requirements we are seeking”, he summarises.

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