SHIP REPAIR & CONVERSION
The latest FPSO contract to be placed involves S i n g a p o r e ' s K e p p e 1 Shipyard, which will convert the 140,905-dwt conventional tanker Ruby Princess to a FPSO. Operated by Nortrans Offshore Vietnam Ltd.
(Nortrans), this is the third FPSO contract which Nortrans, one of the major offshore and engineering consultants in the region, has awarded to Keppel Shipyard over the past year. The previous two vessels were Endeavour, delivered April, 1997, and Petroleo Nautipa (ex Knock Buie), which was completed in April.
Due to be completed this September, Ruby Princess is to be operated by Nortrans for Petronas Carigali (Vietnam) Sdn Bhd on the Ruby Field, South East of Vung Tau in Vietnam, as a base for processing and storing crude oil and mooring/loading terminal for export tankers. The yard will install equipment including process, flare drum and metering skids. Other equipment to be installed includes a 1,500-kW turbo alternator, fresh water generator, communications and navigational devices and safety and fire fighting gadgets. Keppel Shipyard will also design, fabricate, construct and install a flare tower and helideck. A turret single point mooring system complete with structural reinforcement will also be put up at the vessel's bow. Keppel has also been involved in the conversion of Teekay Canada's 106,668-dwt tanker Dampier Spirit (Frontier Spirit), which is being converted to a FSU. An import and export system, a hydraulic system for valves and a forward and aft spread mooring system were installed besides a 10- ton deck crane, helideck and firefighting and navigational equipment.
The accommodations and cargo control rooms were also modified. The vessel's cargo tanks were blasted and recoated while the external hull was similarly treated for an on-location life of at least eight years.
The consolidation in the Singapore repair industry continues with the latest move being by Alan Thorpe, international editor that Sembawang Corp. has been swallowed up by the giant conglomerate, Singapore Technologies. This follows Sembawang's earlier decision to merge with Jurong Shipyard Limited (JSL) and Keppel's decision to merge with Hitachi Zosen (Singapore).
Belgium's Dockwise, a leading heavy-lift shipping specialist, is to convert one of its 1983-built vessels into what it claims will be the world's largest heavy-lift semi-submersible ship. In August, the 23,473-dwt Antiguan-registered Mighty Servant 1 will arrive at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (HMD) to undergo a $20 million jumboization. The project will involve inserting a new 98-ft. (30-m) mid-body section and increasing the beam from its present 131 ft. (40 m) to 164 ft. (50 m) in a contract expected to last 65 days. The conversion will result in a 120 percent increase in carrying capacity to 47,000 tons, while the unobstructed deck area, measuring 7,500-sq.-m., an increase of more than 50 percent. Following the completion of the conversion of American Champion from trawler to seismic vessel, Tyne Tees Dockyard has been awarded a second such project, the conversion of a deepsea fishing vessel into a new seismic survey vessel to be renamed Atlantic Horizon. The contract, which was awarded by Horizon Exploration Ltd, will include the installation of 500 tons of steel, new main engines, new generators and new thrusters as well as total refurbishment of the accommodation and the complete seismic outfit package. In what is believed to be the largest ever repair contract carried out by Panama's Astilleros Braswell International SA, the yard has renewed some 600 tons of steel onboard the 62,153-dwt tanker Golden Eagle, which is owned by Greece's Aran Shipping & Trading. The vessel ran aground during early March this year, with initial estimates showing that some 150 tons of steel renewal was required along the bilge strake and associated internals. The ships arrived in the drydock on March 11, and inspection showed that some 580 tons of steel were needed to be replaced.
Contracts were signed on a basis of seven to eight tons per day, with the complete project esti-mated to take some 80 days to complete.
However, the yard maintained a higher than estimated level of work and the actual contract was complete in 75 days.
In what it is believed to be one of the world's first "fifth survey", Bergesen's 284,522-dwt, 1973- built VLCC Berge Prince entered Dubai Drydocks for a four week period beginning May 6th. There is a great number of large tankers expected to go through fifth special survey work over the coming few years, the latest OPA regulations allowing for tankers to be in service for up to 30 years. Dubai Drydocks also recently carried out guarantee repairs to the first in a series of large lng carriers built by Finland's Kvaerner Masa for Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC). The 116,703-gt Moss-Rosenburg type LNG carrier Mubaraz has already been completed and the second ships, the Mraweh was due last month. Following a low work period during January and February this year, March has resulted in the highest sales figures for over a year for Bahrain's ASRY, which has experienced an overall increased demand throughout the first quarter 1998. March.