Shipbuilding News, January 2020

NASSCO delivers largest con-ro ever built in US

The largest American-built container/roll-on, roll-off ship (con-ro) has left General Dynamics NASSCO’s San Diego shipyard for Matson Inc. 

The 870-by-114-foot Lurline is the largest vessel in Matson’s fleet. It is the first of two Kanaloa-class con-ros from NASSCO for the U.S.-flag operator at a total cost exceeding $500 million. The ships can carry 3,500 TEU with an enclosed garage capable of holding vehicles, break-bulk and rolling stock. 

The modern design includes a fuel-efficient hull form, double-hulled fuel tanks and freshwater ballast. The ships also feature cleaner-burning IMO Tier III dual-fuel engines that will be fully compliant with the latest international regulations. Top speed is 23 knots. 

Lurline will carry cargo between Hawaii and Matson’s West Coast terminals in Oakland, Seattle and Long Beach, Calif. Its first commercial run is scheduled for this week, with an estimated arrival in Honolulu on Jan. 15.

Maryland pilots order new launch from Gladding-Hearn

Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding has won a contract from the Association of Maryland Pilots to build a new class of pilot boat. The 48-by-15-foot launch with the classic deep-V hull form will be known as the Baltimore class, named for the port where it will operate. 

Propulsion will come from twin 600-hp Volvo Penta D13 main engines turning five-blade nibral propellers through ZF gearboxes. A Northern Lights genset will provide auxiliary power. The top speed is projected at 29 knots. 

The vessel will have a centerline hull station inside the wheelhouse with NorSap shock-reducing seats. Outside, there will be heated side decks, multiple boarding platforms, Harken safety rails and a control station installed at the transom. 

Delivery is scheduled for spring 2021, and work will take place at Gladding’s shipyard in Somerset, Mass.

Armstrong Marine delivers new research vessel

Orca Maritime has taken delivery of a 42-foot research catamaran from Armstrong Marine USA that will be used in a host of commercial, research and defense capacities. Benthic Cat is a sister ship to R/V Bob and Betty Beyster, which Armstrong delivered last year to the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego.

The aluminum-hulled vessel is based on Armstrong’s 4216-CTC design. Propulsion comes from twin Volvo Penta D11 inboard engines delivering 510 hp paired with Volvo IPS 650 drives. Benthic Cat also has Volvo electric steering with joystick controls and a dynamic positioning system. It reached 37 knots during sea trials and has a 32-knot cruising speed. 

Deck equipment includes a Morgan Marine crane and an A-frame with a Pullmaster hydraulic winch. Northern Lights supplied a 9-kW generator for auxiliary power. 

Inside, the vessel has Bentley’s seats, two workstations and a sleeping cuddy for four people. Garmin supplied the marine electronics. 

Benthic Cat has already entered service for Orca Maritime along the Southern California coast. 

Armstrong Marine, based in Port Angeles, Wash., also recently announced a new contract to build a 49-passenger ferry to serve Hat Island, located near Everett in the Puget Sound. The 45-foot catamaran will be outfitted with Cummins engines, a Northern Lights generator and an advanced ZF steering control system. Delivery is expected later this year.

Modutech, Robert Allan partnering on US Navy tugs

Shipbuilder Modutech Marine of Tacoma, Wash., and designer Robert Allan Ltd. (RAL) are working together to develop a new tugboat for the U.S. Navy. There is also an option for a second vessel in the class. 

The 63-by-30-foot vessel will be based on RAL’s existing RAscal 1800-Z commercial tugs built in Turkey for clients in the Middle East, Europe and New Zealand. The vessels are designed as day boats but will have accommodations for four people.

The new tugs will join RAL Z-Tech 4500 tugboats already in the Navy fleet in the YT 802 class. Dakota Creek Industries of Anacortes, Wash., is currently building six additional Navy tugs designed by RAL, which is based in Vancouver, British Columbia. 

Limited details about the Modutech vessels were available. Propulsion will come from twin 1,300-hp EPA Tier 4 engines. Bollard pull will exceed 30 tons. Construction will begin in 2020.

Mavrik building new high-speed ferry for Bay Area

Mavrik Marine has been awarded a contract to build a second 300-passenger high-speed ferry for the San Francisco Bay Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA).

Mavrik of La Conner, Wash., already has Dorado under construction for the Bay Area operator. Delivery of the second vessel, as yet unnamed, is scheduled for 2021. 

At that time, the ferry will become the 17th in WETA’s fleet, which now has nearly 6,000 seats. Since 2017, the operator has added six new ferries with 2,490 seats, boosting capacity on its busiest routes and adding a new route to Richmond, Calif.

Construction of the ferry is expected to cost $14.8 million. Specs were not available.

Seabulk order from Master Boat includes two hybrid tugs

Seabulk Towing has ordered four 80-ton bollard pull tugboats from Master Boat Builders of Bayou La Batre, Ala., set for delivery in 2021 and 2022. 

Two of the new vessels will be built on the Advanced Rotortug platform, adding to the company’s existing fleet of Rotortugs that have a triangular z-drive arrangement. The vessels currently operate from Seabulk facilities in the southeastern U.S. 

The two other newbuilds will be traditional z-drive tugs with diesel-electric hybrid propulsion, becoming the first in the company’s fleet with hybrid power. The vessels will be equipped with sufficient space for future installation of batteries. Specs on both tug classes were not available. 

“These tugs represent the latest in technological innovation and showcase our responsiveness to structural and environmental stewardship changes in the shipping sector,” said Daniel Thorogood, president of Seabulk.

Eastern delivers 70th towboat to Florida Marine Transporters

Eastern Shipbuilding and Florida Marine Transporters (FMT) reached a key milestone in late November with the delivery of Jaden Pasentine, the 70th towboat built by the yard for the Louisiana operator. 

Eastern and FMT first partnered on the Canal class of towboats 14 years ago. The 90-by-32-foot Jaden Pasentine followed delivery in August of DPJ II.

Propulsion for the most recent group of vessels comes from twin 1,500-hp Caterpillar 3512 Tier 3 diesels paired with Twin Disc MG-5600 reduction gears. Electrical power comes from twin 99-kW John Deere Tier 3 gensets. 

FMT vessels operate throughout the inland waterways and on the Intracoastal Waterway. The company also recently celebrated the delivery of its 100th vessel, the 100-foot towboat David Goin, from Steiner Shipyard in Bayou La Batre, Ala.

By Professional Mariner Staff