Shipbuilding News, February 2015

Vane Brothers orders two new tugs from Chesapeake

Chesapeake Shipbuilding signed a contract in late January with Vane Brothers to build two new tugboats, marking the 13th and 14th tugs that Chesapeake will have built for Vane Brothers in the last several years.

Designated Hull 123 and Hull 124, the new tugboats will be nearly identical to the previous 12 built for Vane Brothers. They will be equipped with twin Caterpillar 3512 main engines, producing a combined 3,000 hp, and a single drum hydraulic winch. Similar to the previous tugs, the new boat will have comfortable accommodations for crewmembers.

Chesapeake Shipbuilding has recently upgraded its facility to increase production capacity and efficiency. Each Chesapeake Shipbuilding tug is built in a controlled indoor environment before being moved and launched into Maryland’s Wicomico River.

VT Halter lays keel for Crowley LNG-fueled ConRo ship

VT Halter Marine Inc.’s facility in Pascagoula, Miss., laid the keel for the first of two liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered, combination container/roll-on/roll-off (ConRo) ships for Crowley Maritime Corp.’s liner services group on Jan. 21.

The keel-laying marked the next step in the construction of Crowley’s first Commitment-class ship, which will exclusively serve Crowley’s U.S.-Puerto Rico route. It will replace the company’s towed triple-deck barge fleet in the South Atlantic trade that has served the company since the early 1970s.

The new Jones Act ships, named El Coquí and Taíno, will be built at the Pascagoula facility, with deliveries scheduled for mid- and late-2017, respectively. Design for the ships is provided by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime.

The new Commitment-class ship is designed to maximize the carriage of 53-foot-long, 102-inch-wide containers. The ship will measure 720 feet long and 106 feet wide, with a deep draft of 32 feet and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tons. Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 TEU, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles in an enclosed roll-on/roll-off garage.

The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fueled with LNG. According to Crowley, the ships will set a new standard for environmentally responsible shipping as LNG, a stable gas that is neither toxic nor corrosive and is lighter than air, is the cleanest fossil fuel available, netting a 100 percent reduction in sulfur oxide (SOx) and particulate matter (PM), and a 92 percent reduction in nitrogen oxide (NOx). LNG has the ability to significantly reduce carbon dioxide (CO2), a contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, as compared with conventional fossil fuels.

VT Halter Marine and Crowley entered into a contract for the pair of ships in November 2013 and construction began with the first steel plate cutting in Pascagoula in October 2014. The shipbuilder began to assemble the keel once enough steel pieces had been cut. With the first section set into place, the ship will now begin to take shape as it is built around the keel. 

New ASD tug delivered to Signet Maritime

During the last quarter of 2014, Signet Maritime of Pascagoula, Miss., took delivery of a 72-foot azimuthing stern drive (ASD) tug, Signet Vigilant. The tug is the ninth ASD added to Signet’s fleet in the last four years. It was built at the company’s shipyard, Signet Shipbuilding & Repair in Pascagoula. 

The 30-metric-ton bollard pull, EPA Tier 3-compliant ASD tug is the first designed by Castleman Maritime LLC of Clear Shores, Texas, for Signet. The tug will operate from Signet’s Pascagoula Division, performing rig escort, ship assist and barge assist work.

Signet Vigilant’s compact design allows for improved capabilities to assist marine vessels in tight quarters and shallow inland waterways. The environmentally friendly tug will have reduced exhaust and lower fuel consumption to meet Tier 3 marine emission regulations. 

Propulsion power for the 72-foot-by-28-foot Signet Vigilant is supplied by two MTU 8V-4000 M54 Tier 3 engines, delivering a combined total of 2,400 bhp at 1,800 revolutions per minute. The engines drive two Rolls Royce US 155 P12-FP azimuth propulsion units. Auxiliary power is provided by two John Deere 4045AFM85 EPA Tier 3 engines coupled to 65-KW Marathon Magnaplus gensets.

Deck machinery includes a Markey DEPC-32, 20-hp winch on the bow, and two Patterson WWP40E 40-ton facing winches on the stern. The hawser winch capacity is 525 feet of 6.5-inch Saturn 12 synthetic line.

NASSCO Bremerton awarded $33.7M in new Nimitz work

General Dynamics NASSCO in Bremerton, Wash., announced Jan. 22 that it is being awarded a $33,725,621 modification to a previously awarded contract (N00024-14-C-4321) in order to accomplish the repair and alterations for the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68).

This modification is awarded under contract line item number (CLIN) 0014 of the existing five-year contract for non-nuclear maintenance, repair and alterations of CVN 68- and CVN 78-class ships.

USS Nimitz will be undergoing an extended planned incremental availability, which is the opportunity in the ship's life cycle to conduct repairs and alterations.

Exercise of option CLIN 0014 will authorize the first major industrial availability of the contract, which entails modification and repair of equipment, hull and systems. Work will be performed in Bremerton, and is expected to be completed by June 2016. Fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance funding in the amount of $17,278,834 will be obligated at time of award and will expire at the end of the current fiscal year.

Bollinger announces three executive promotions

Bollinger Shipyards announced the promotions of three key leaders on Jan. 22.

President and Chief Executive Ben Bordelon announced the promotions of Tim Martinez, Scott Theriot and Corey Phelps. Martinez has accepted the position of executive vice president of the repair division. Theriot has been promoted to executive vice president of sales and marketing. Phelps has accepted the position of general manager of Bollinger Morgan City (BMC) and Bollinger Amelia Repair (BAR).

Martinez began his Bollinger career in 1996 and has steadily assumed roles of increasing responsibility since. In 2006, Martinez was promoted to division general manager for Bollinger Morgan City (BMC) and assumed responsibility for Bollinger Amelia Repair (BAR) in 2008. He was named vice president and general manager of BMC and BAR in 2012.

Theriot has been a contributing member of Bollinger's senior management team for a total of 25 years. Since 2008, he has served as the vice president and general manager of Bollinger Lockport New Construction (BLN).  

Phelps joined Bollinger in 2003 as an assistant estimating/project coordinator and has since risen steadily through the ranks. In 2012, he was promoted to operations manager for BMC and BAR, a position that has prepared him well for his new opportunity.  

Washburn & Doughty launches new Moran ASD

The newest in Moran’s fleet of escort/ship-docking tugs was launched at Washburn & Doughty in East Boothbay, Maine, on Jan. 23.

Payton Grace Moran, Hull No. 111, was designed by Bruce Washburn and is an azimuthing stern drive tug measuring 93 feet overall with a beam of 38 feet and a loaded draft of 15.5 feet. The tug is powered by twin EMD 12-710G7C Tier 3 engines, with a total of 6,000 hp, mated to Schottel SRP 1515 FP Z-drives. Deck equipment includes a Markey foredeck winch with an estimated bollard pull of 161,000 pounds.

Payton Grace Moran will join the company’s fleet in the Port of Norfolk, Va.

By Professional Mariner Staff