Shipbuilding News February 2013

Crowley christens new U.S. flag tanker in Philadelphia

Crowley Maritime Corp. christened its newest tanker, Florida, Jan. 30 at the Aker Philadelphia Shipyard. The 330,000-barrel ship will serve a major energy customer in the Gulf of Mexico. The U.S.-flag vessel is the second of two American built, operated and crewed tankers Crowley purchased last year from Aker.

The new tanker will provide 50 American seagoing and shore-side jobs. The first of these two tankers, Pennsylvania, was delivered by Aker in September 2012 and is currently working in the Gulf of Mexico.

Both tankers are capable of carrying 330,000 barrels of petroleum products and chemicals. The Veteran class design is based on the Athenian-class 46,000-dwt product tanker from Hyundai Mipo Dockyards. The standard design was changed to conform to U.S. registry and U.S. coastwise trade requirements.

The U.S.-flag vessels are the 13th and 14th in the Veteran class built at Aker. This design provides Crowley customers with ABS-classed vessels that have been thoroughly tested and refined for performance and reliability.


General Dynamics, Totem agree on design contract for LNG conversions

General Dynamics Nassco announced on Jan. 28 that it has finalized a contract with Totem Ocean Trailer Express (TOTE) to design the conversion of the company’s two existing Orca-class, diesel-electric trailerships to liquefied natural gas (LNG) propulsion. This design contract is in addition to the new-construction order that TOTE Shipholdings placed with Nassco last month for the construction of two new LNG-powered containerships.

Conversion of these ships to LNG propulsion will significantly reduce or nearly eliminate the sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, carbon dioxide (SOx, NOx, and CO2) and particulate matter from ship emissions when compared to traditional diesel fuel.

In recent years, there have been large increases in the cost of diesel fuel as well as stricter emission regulations. These factors, along with the environmental benefits made possible by this new technology, make LNG propulsion desirable for many new shipbuilding and conversion projects.

The 839-foot Orca class ships, which operate between Tacoma, Wash., and Anchorage, Alaska, were designed and built by Nassco. Both ships were delivered in 2003.


Signet delivers 140-foot heavy deck barge

Signet 141, a heavy deck barge, was christened on Dec. 20, 2012. The barge — designed by Farrell and Norton Naval Architects of Newcastle, Maine, and built by Signet Maritime Corp.’s Pascagoula, Miss., shipbuilding and repair facility — will provide an additional asset to assist customers in the Port of Pascagoula, where it will be based for charter by Signet Maritime for work in Gulf ports.

The barge has a length overall of 140 feet, beam of 40 feet, a molded depth of 9 feet, a light draft of 1 foot 5 inches and will handle 800 long tons of cargo with deck strength of 2,000 pounds per square foot. This improved design will afford Signet the opportunity to assist with the movement of cargo in the port and surrounding areas.


Vigor to order large floating dry dock from Chinese yard

Vigor Industrial reached an agreement with Daoda Marine Heavy Industry Co. (DMHI) on Jan. 14 for the construction by the Chinese shipyard of a new floating dry dock for $40 million.

At 960 feet long, with an inside width of 186 feet and a lifting capacity of 80,000 long tons, it will be the largest floating dry dock in the United States.

“We decided now is the time to buy because demand to service large vessels is growing and large dry dock capacity in proximity to the U.S. West Coast has diminished,” said Vigor Industrial CEO Frank Foti.

The new dry dock, to be stationed in Portland, Ore., will be 300 feet longer than the largest dry dock Vigor currently owns. It will be one and a half times wider and will be able to lift more than triple the weight.

This new capacity will allow Vigor to service the incoming generation of the U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC) dry cargo/ammunition ships, which are replacing some smaller MSC ammunition, combat stores and fuel ships. The dry dock will be capable of servicing large commercial vessels, including post-Panamax cargo ships and cruise ships.

The increased capacity will also help Vigor meet growing demand from the Arctic, as vessels exploring for oil and gas and other ship operators take advantage of longer ice-free summers.

DMHI will build the dry dock at its facility in Jiangsu Provence for delivery by March 2014. The dry dock will be towed to Portland in three pieces for assembly.


Gladding-Hearn pilot boat order carries hull No. 400

The Cape Fear Pilots Association, Southport, N.C., ordered in January a second St. John’s Class pilot boat from Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding, Duclos Corp.

This vessel will be the 400th boat built by the yard since its founding in 1955. Delivery is planned for later this year.

The all-aluminum launch, with a deep-V hull designed by C. Raymond Hunt Associates, measures 52 feet overall, with a 17-foot beam and a 4.8-foot draft. It will be powered by twin Caterpillar C-18 diesel engines, each producing 479 bhp at 1,800 rpm. Top speed is expected to reach 23 knots. The EPA Tier 2-rated engines will turn five-blade nibral propellers via Twin Disc MG 5114A-7 Quick Shift gearboxes. A Northern Lights diesel generator will provide 9kW of output.

The launch will feature wide side decks and be equipped with heated exterior handrails to prevent ice formation and a boarding platform on the roof. At the transom is a winch-operated, rotating-davit recessed platform for pilot rescue operations.

Interior accommodations will be cooled and heated by a pair of 16,000-btu units. The wheelhouse will have three Llebroc pilot seats and a helm seat. The forecastle will be outfitted with a settee, a galley, two bunks, and an enclosed head.


New double-ended ferry for Upper Arrow Lake in Canada

A contract for a new double-ended ferry that will operate on the Upper Arrow Lake in British Columbia, Canada, has been awarded to Waterbridge Steel Inc. by the British Columbia Transportation Authority.

As of 2014, the new vessel is to replace two ferries built in the 1960s with Voith Schneider propellers (VSP). Since 1968, the two VSP-propelled double-ended ferries, Shelter Bay and Galena Bay, have been transporting passengers and their vehicles between the bays of the same name on Upper Arrow Lake. In 2011, the ferry route served just under 300,000 tourists, forestry workers and hunters.

The vessels operate under adverse conditions. For example, forest industry activities in the woods around the lake result in plenty of driftwood and logs in the water.

The new ferry will also feature VSP propulsion and operate 7,000 hours a year. With its ability to transport 250 passengers and 80 cars, it has more than twice the capacity of the previous ferries. The vessel will be 318 feet long and 65 feet wide. It is being built in Nakusp on Upper Arrow Lake where Waterbridge Steel Inc. built a new shipyard for the project.


By Professional Mariner Staff