Washington state-based All American Marine has delivered a new research vessel, Imua, to the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
The catamaran was designed by Nic de Waal of Teknicraft Design in Auckland, New Zealand. Ordered from All American in October 2022, the boat was built at All American’s shipyard on Bellingham Bay.
The 68-foot, semi-displacement aluminum catamaran can range from shallow coastal waters out to 150 nautical miles offshore. Its proprietary symmetrical and asymmetrical combined hull shape, bow wave piercer, and patented hydrofoil-assisted hull design are combined to break up wave action and ensure reduced drag while enhancing passenger comfort.
The twin-engine speed and fuel-efficiency of the vessel will be fundamental in meeting UH’s research goals and allowing researchers access to study marine environments in the Hawaiian Islands,” according to the HIMB.
The vessel “has been custom designed to support a diverse portfolio of science and outreach missions including advanced studies on marine megafauna, pelagic and coastal ecosystem research, oceanographic surveys, and K–12 learning experiences for up to 20 people.”
Imua is powered by twin Scania DI16, Tier 3 engines, rated at 800 mhp @ 2100 rpm, which can drive the craft at a cruising speed of 22-24 knots or a fuel-efficient minimum survey speed of 3 knots.
“We are incredibly excited to be able to have a custom-built vessel for our environmentally driven research missions in and around the Hawaiian Islands,” said Dr. Carl Meyer, PhD, a Fellow of the Institute of Biology (UK) and researcher at the University of Hawaii.
“All American Marine understood our mission and provided a new design to meet our mission-specific needs. We are excited about the positive impacts this vessel will have for us, including a substantial increase in the abilities of our programs.”
The cost of designing, building, and fitting-out Imua was funded by a seven-year $50 million commitment from Dr. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg, “which will support various research groups within the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology,” the HIMB said.