Shipbuilding News, November 2019

Bisso welcomes first Tier 4 ASD tug to Mississippi River

Main Iron Works of Houma, La., has put the finishing touches on Andrew S., a 6,008-hp ship-assist tugboat for longtime customer Bisso Towboat.

It is the fourth ASD tractor tug the Luling, La., operator has added from Main Iron Works in the past five years. It is also the first Tier 4 vessel in the Bisso fleet and the most powerful ASD ship-assist tug working on the Mississippi River.

Propulsion comes from twin Caterpillar 3516E engines generating 3,004 hp each. The mains turn Rolls-Royce US255 FP z-drives with 98-inch stainless-steel propellers in nozzles. Bollard pull is estimated at 84 tons.

Two 99-kW Marathon generators driven by John Deere 4045AFM85 engines provide electrical service, and JonRie supplied the Series 240 escort winch wound with 500 feet of 3-inch Saturn-12 line.

Andrew S. carries an ABS international load line and earned a Coast Guard certificate of inspection under Subchapter M. It is the 13th tug in Bisso’s fleet, and the eighth with ASD propulsion.

VT Halter launches LNG bunker barge

VT Halter Marine has launched a 4,000-cubic-meter bunker barge that will be part of the nation’s first articulated tug-barge (ATB) built for offshore transport of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The Pascagoula, Miss., shipyard also is constructing the ATB tugboat. Q-LNG Transport of New Orleans will operate the vessels. 

The 324-by-64-foot barge, Q-LNG 4000, will be paired with the 128-foot Q-Ocean Services. The tug will be powered by two GE 6L250 MDC Tier 4 engines delivering 2,550 hp each. The mains will turn Wartsila z-drives. The vessels will operate under charter to Shell Trading and serve ports in Florida and the Caribbean. 

Q-LNG 4000 is dedicated to delivering safe transit to all ships and ports it will serve,” said Shane Guidry, chief executive officer of Q-LNG Transport. “(We are) committed to being a leader in developing LNG infrastructure in the United States and abroad.”

Delivery of the ATB is scheduled for early 2020.

Gulf Island lays keel for new class of Navy tugboats

Gulf Island Shipyard in Houma, La., held a keel-laying ceremony on Oct. 30 for USNS Navajo (T-ATS 6), the first vessel in a new series of towing, salvage and rescue tugboats for the U.S. Navy.

The 263-by-59-foot fleet ocean tugs, based on existing commercial designs, will replace the Powhatan-class T-ATF fleet tugs and Safeguard-class T-ARS rescue and salvage vessels, which are nearing the end of their useful lives, according to the Navy. The new tugs will be able to tow large Navy ships and provide salvage and rescue support.

Gulf Island has contracts for the detail design and construction of USNS Navajo, USNS Cherokee Nation (T-ATS 7) and USNS Saginaw Ojibwe Anishinabek (T-ATS 8). The first delivery is scheduled for fiscal year 2021, followed by two more in 2022. Vessels in the series are named for Native American tribes.

Gladding-Hearn delivers launch to Lake Charles Pilots

Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding of Somerset, Mass., recently delivered a new launch to the Lake Charles Pilots. Cameron Pilot II is the fourth Gladding-Hearn vessel in the Louisiana organization’s fleet.

The 70-by-22-foot all-aluminum boat is powered by two Tier 3 Cummins QSK38-M engines rated for 1,300 hp each. The mains turn Bruntons five-blade nibral props through Twin Disc reduction gears. Humphree interceptors with automatic trim stabilization and active ride control improve passenger comfort. Two Northern Lights 25-kW gensets provide electrical power. The top speed is 28 knots.

The pilothouse is outfitted with nine Llebroc seats. The forecastle has a stateroom with upper and lower berths and a head and galley. Three 16,000-BTU Marine-Air units and two 12,000-BTU units provide cooling for the vessel’s interior.

Fincantieri Bay, Vard win contract for LNG bunker barge

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding of Sturgeon Bay, Wis., has been awarded a contract to build a 5,400-cubic-meter bunker barge to carry liquefied natural gas (LNG). Vard Marine is designing the vessel scheduled for delivery in November 2021. 

Polaris New Energy ordered the vessel to support bunkering of LNG-fueled ships on the East Coast. When completed, the 340-by-66-foot barge will be the largest such vessel carrying LNG in the Jones Act fleet, according to Vard. Wartsila will provide the cargo handling system. 

“Vard Marine is proud to be a part of this evolution,” said Darren Truelock, vice president of Vard Marine’s Houston operations. “Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding has brought together a ‘dream team’ of expertise to provide Polaris New Energy with a world-class product that will be instrumental in providing access to cleaner, economical energy.”

Metal Shark building fireboat for Cape Canaveral 

Canaveral Fire Rescue, serving communities along Florida’s central coast, has ordered a custom fireboat from Metal Shark.

The 70-by-22-foot aluminum monohull, based on the 70 Defiant series, features a customized layout designed for firefighting and ease of use during emergency situations. It will be equipped with a FLIR M400XR thermal imaging system and a positive-pressure chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high-yield explosive (CBRNE) system. 

The vessel will be capable of reaching 35 knots thanks to four 800-hp MAN diesel engines paired with HamiltonJet waterjets. Two Darley fire pumps rated for 3,000 gallons per minute will feed five monitors: two 2,000-gpm remote-operated monitors on the bow, a roof-mounted 5,000-gpm remote monitor, and two 1,250-gpm manual monitors aft. The fireboat also will have a 500-gallon foam tank. 

Jeanerette, La.-based Metal Shark has made a concerted push into the fireboat market and has customers across Florida, including the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Department.

Elliott Bay to design hybrid ferries for Washington state

Vigor Fab has chosen Elliott Bay Design Group (EBDG) of Seattle to provide the blueprints for Washington State Ferries’ new hybrid-electric ferry project. The work involves altering the existing Olympic-class ferry design to accommodate the hybrid propulsion system. 

Vigor has a contract to build up to five hybrid-electric ferries for the operator, which is the largest in the United States. The vessels will run on battery power, with hybrid diesel-electric power as a backup. Dockside terminals will replenish the batteries during loading and offloading, according to EBDG. 

Construction of the first hybrid ferry is scheduled to start next year. Delivery is expected in 2022.

By Professional Mariner Staff