Constructed in China
at the Qiu Xin Shipyard in Shanghai, Maria Desgagnes
is a state-of-the-art double-hulled, ice class 1A, type 2 oil and chemical tanker
, which is able to transport 12 different types of cargo at once. Featuring a total capacity of 15,570 cu. m., the vessel measures 394 x 69 ft. (120 x 21 m) requiring an investment of more than $35 million.
The vessel is chartered by Petro-Nav, a subsidiary introduced by Groupe Desgagnes in 1996 with two other shareholders - Nicolas Gravino and Richard P. Carson - to develop the bulk liquid transport side of the business. The tanker joins two others in the fleet - Thalassa Desgagnes and Petrolia Desgagnes, as well as Rigel Shipping Canada tankers for which Petro-Nav has signed a long term charter agreement.
Known as one of the best-equipped oil tankers in the Canadian fleet, Maria Desgagnes is considered a milestone within the maritime industry. According to research completed by Groupe Desgagnes, aside from the construction of ferries for governments - or passenger ships - this is the first new Canadian-owned merchant vessel to join Canada's shipping fleet since 1984 and the first oil tanker since 1982.
This technologically-driven vessel includes a loading program that calculates ship stability when intact or damaged, among other things; a computerized monitoring system for cargo and ballast tanks, including ullage, temperature, high-level alarm, etc; and stainless steel heating coils for the cargo oil and slop tanks.
With a loading and discharge capacity of 1,800 cu. m., the vessel's main engine houses a shaft alternator, while maneuvering bow thrusters assist in docking and navigation in restricted waters.