Titanium Water Jet Hydraulic Oil Coolers

US Navy Ships Upgrade Steering Systems with
Titanium Oil Coolers

USS Wichita Uses Titanium Water Jet Oil Cooler
Titanium Water Jet Oil Coolers

The US Navy’s new “Freedom Class” warships have waterjet propulsion systems from Rolls Royce Marine (KaMeWa waterjets).  These high powered machines move the ship through the water and provide steering as well.  While underway, the waterjets are swung from side to side in order to keep the ships on course (just like a rudder!).  The hydraulic oil required to move the steering pistons is cooled by sea water passing through shell and tube heat exchangers.

The steering oil coolers installed at new construction utilized Cu-Ni tubes and proved to be “Not fit for purpose”.  They were failing at a frequency far outside of acceptable limits for a combat vessel.  The decision was made to replace these oil coolers with a more robust material.  Given that these LCS ships operate in very shallow water, the use of Plate and Frame exchangers was deemed risky due to the potential for plugging with mud and sea grasses.  The Navy wanted shell and tube units that would survive the tough shallow water environment.

Huntington Ingalls shipyard (Pascagoula, MS) came to Titanium Marine in search of a more robust oil cooler that would meet the US Navy’s requirements.  The solution was a 100% Titanium shell and tube exchanger that could be retrofitted into the available volume left by the previous gear.  The units were supplied in pairs (Port / Stbd) and were packaged into ‘Kits’ that allowed for a turnkey installation when the individual ships arrived back from deployment.


Your diesel main engines and generators need efficient cooling for long service life. Rejecting engine heat to the ocean requires thousands of gallons per hour of sea water flowing through the jacket water and turbo intercoolers. Traditional copper-nickel engine coolers will fail over time and can pump raw sea water INTO the engines and auxiliaries.

This type of failure can cost tens of thousands of dollars and months out of service. With titanium jacket water and turbo intercoolers, you will have the most robust heat exchangers available. Your engines will run cooler and your valuable assets will be protected.

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