(BELLINGHAM, Wash.) — All American Marine (AAM) has delivered an innovative research vessel, Imua, to the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
The 68.5-by-25-foot semi-displacement aluminum catamaran was developed by Nic de Waal of Teknicraft Design in Auckland, New Zealand. The vessel contains proven design elements found in the recently commissioned research vessels Blue Manta and Shearwater built for BlueTide Puerto Rico and Duke University, respectively.
Imua was constructed to U.S. Coast Guard standards and will operate as a multipurpose research vessel in Hawaiian waters and offshore on ocean routes. The twin-engine speed and fuel efficiency of this vessel will be fundamental to meet the University of Hawaii’s research goals and allow it to access and study marine environments in the Hawaiian Islands.
“From the beginning, we had productive discussions with All American Marine. This allowed them to understand exactly what we wanted from this vessel,” said Dr. Carl Meyer, fellow of the Institute of Biology (United Kingdom) and University of Hawaii researcher. “I’m very impressed at her speed and handling, even with all our scientific payload on board. Our opportunities to conduct research in certain oceanic areas around Hawaii are contingent on fairly good sea conditions. The ability to get to these remote places quickly with Imua means considerably more opportunities to leverage weather using this vessel compared to a traditional, rather slow research platform.”
The new research vessel integrates the signature Teknicraft symmetrical and asymmetrical combined hull shape, bow wave piercer, and a patented hydrofoil-assisted hull design. The hull and hull components are designed to break up wave action and ensure reduced drag while enhancing passenger comfort.
The main foil action reduces the power needed to maintain service speed; therefore, fuel consumption and running costs are reduced significantly, while also further enhancing the softness of the ride, especially in choppy seas. Teknicraft’s hydrofoil system consists of the main foil spanning the tunnel at the keel.
The vessel also features transom-mounted Humphree interceptors. The lift produced by the hydrofoil reduces the hull resistance while increasing speed and load-bearing capability, while the interceptors offer additional trim control.
This advanced hull shape was custom designed using digital modeling and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis testing. The vessel’s design offers all passengers and crew a smooth ride and comfort, as the hull provides a cushioned effect when encountering waves.
The vessel offers a fully laden cruise speed of 22 to 24 knots and a fuel-efficient minimum survey speed of 3 knots. With a large fuel capacity of 1,800 gallons, this design will support a science team of eight on offshore multiday missions and 22 students/crew on shorter day excursions.
The propulsion package includes twin Scania DI16 082M Tier 3 engines, rated at 800 hp at 2,100 rpm, driving two fixed-pitch propellers. Scientists and crew have comfortable live-aboard quarters, large state-of-the-art wet and dry lab spaces, as well as a range of the latest oceanographic equipment in which to conduct a variety of missions.
– All American Marine