Shipbuilding News, April 2019

Interlake orders first US-flagged laker in 35 years

Interlake Steamship Co. has selected Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding to build the first U.S.-flagged Great Lakes bulk carrier in more than 35 years.

Propulsion aboard the 639-foot self-unloading ship will come from two 16-cylinder EMD Tier 4 engines turning a single controllable-pitch Kongsberg propeller. Its top speed will exceed 15 mph. The ship also will have bow and stern thrusters for maneuverability. Electrical power will come from a 940-kW ship service generator, along with two 2,500-kW shaft generators and a single 274-kW emergency genset.

“When we approached a historic project of this magnitude — building our company’s first ship since 1981 — we knew it was critical to choose the right partners. Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding is the shipyard that has the experience and skill to execute on our long-term vision,” Interlake President Mark Barker said in a prepared statement.

Interlake Steamship Co. is based in Middleburg Heights, Ohio. It operates the largest privately owned Jones Act fleet on the Great Lakes, with nine vessels carrying bulk cargoes. The project also will support roughly 700 skilled jobs at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay, Wis.

The ship is scheduled for delivery in mid-2022.

Matson takes delivery of second Aloha-class boxship

Philly Shipyard delivered the second of two Aloha-class containerships to Matson Navigation Co. in late March.

The 850-foot Kaimana Hila will soon join its 3,600-TEU sister ship Daniel K. Inouye in the Jones Act trade connecting Hawaii and West Coast ports. Kaimana Hila has dual-fuel engines capable of running on liquefied natural gas and marine diesel, and it is designed to sail faster than 23 knots.

“Today’s delivery marks the successful conclusion of the construction of the two largest container vessels ever built in the United States,” said Steinar Nerbovik, Philly Shipyard president and CEO. “Matson is a first-class customer and on behalf of all of the men and women of the shipyard, we thank them for their trust and confidence in us.”

The two newest Matson ships, delivered six months apart, are the 29th and 30th ships built by Philly Shipyard since its founding 20 years ago. The yard previously built four containerships for Matson between 2003 and 2006 that remain in the company’s Pacific fleet.

Washburn & Doughty inks deal for four Moran tugs

Moran Towing Corp. of New Canaan, Conn., has ordered four new tugboats from longtime shipbuilding partner Washburn & Doughty. Jensen Maritime Consultants designed the new vessels, which will be shorter and narrower than the tugs Moran has previously built at the yard in East Boothbay, Maine.

The 86-by-36-foot tugboats will have twin Caterpillar 3512E Tier 4 engines, each producing 2,550 horsepower, that will be paired with Rolls-Royce z-drives. Bollard pull is estimated to be 68 short tons. Markey will supply the forward bow winch, H-bitt and hydraulic capstan on the aft deck.

The tugs will primarily perform ship assist and escort work on the East Coast and Gulf Coast. They will be built with a deep skeg that remains open at the aft end for better maneuverability, according to Jensen.

“The skeg also provides for a more stable platform when underway, minimizing rolling due to the seaway,” Jensen said in a news release. The tug will have four staterooms with berthing for six people.

Moran has been a longtime customer at Washburn & Doughty. Between 2011 and 2017, the shipyard built 12 of its in-house 93-by-38-foot tugs for the operator, including Judy Moran delivered last summer.

Conrad delivers ATB unit to Vane Brothers

Conrad Shipyard has finished its third articulated tug-barge (ATB) unit built in a series for Vane Brothers of Baltimore, Md.

The 110-foot tugboat Wachapreague is paired with the 403-by-74-foot barge Double Skin 803. The barge has bow thrusters for improved maneuverability and thermal heaters needed to carry asphalt. Propulsion on the tug comes from twin 2,200-hp Cummins engines, and the vessel has berthing for 10 crew.

“It is always rewarding to deliver new vessels to a repeat customer like Vane,” said Johnny Conrad, chairman and CEO of the Morgan City, La.-based shipyard. “The Vane team is great to work with, and this ATB is representative of the quality, craftsmanship, integrity and service consistently delivered by our extraordinary shipbuilding team.”

Wachapreague is named for a town on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

Gulf Island delivers next-generation Z-Tech tugs

G&H Towing has taken delivery of two next-generation Z-Tech 30-80 tractor tugboats built by Gulf Island Shipyards using a new design from Robert Allan Ltd. (RAL).

Mark E. Kuebler, the first vessel in the 10-boat order, was delivered in early February to Bay-Houston Towing. The second delivery, Ted C. Litton, joined the Suderman & Young Towing fleet in late March. Both companies are operated by G&H Towing of Galveston, Texas, and each is slated to get five of the new 98.5-foot tugs.

Propulsion comes from twin 3,386-hp Caterpillar 3516E Tier 4 engines driving Schottel SRP 510FP z-drives with 110-inch props. Lightboat top speed exceeds 13 knots, and bollard pull exceeds 84 metric tons. The firefighting system consists of two FFS 6,200-gpm pumps each driven by a Cat C18 engine. Electrical service comes from twin John Deere 6068 diesel gensets.

The tugs have evolved from the Z-Tech 7500 design that RAL supplied for G&H Towing’s earlier tug class built at Eastern Shipbuilding a few years ago. The sponsoned hull form gives the new vessels significantly better escort capability, according to RAL.

Eastern launches fourth Tier 4 McAllister z-drive

Capt. Jim McAllister, the fourth Tier 4 tractor tugboat of its kind for McAllister Towing, is getting closer to delivery.

Eastern Shipbuilding launched the 100-by-40-foot tug in mid-March from its Allanton, Fla., facility south of Panama City. Jensen Maritime Consultants designed Capt. Jim McAllister and its predecessors Capt. Brian A. McAllister, Rosemary McAllister and Ava M. McAllister.

Propulsion across the four-boat class consists of two Caterpillar 3516E engines generating 3,386 hp at 1,800 rpm. Those Tier 4 mains drive Schottel SRP 4000 z-drives. Electrical power comes from three Cat C7.1 gensets delivering 118 kW. Markey winches are installed fore and aft on Capt. Jim McAllister, and its firefighting capabilities stem from an SFP fire pump and 3,000-gpm FFS 300M monitor.

Ava M. McAllister is scheduled for delivery in mid-2019, followed a few months later by Capt. Jim McAllister.

By Professional Mariner Staff