Hardinxveld-Giessendam/Papendrecht - At 6 p.m. today, Her Majesty the Queen of The Netherlands will perform the naming and launching ceremony for the trailing suction hopper dredger
‘Prins der Nederlanden’. This dredging vessel is being built by Merwede Shipyard in Hardinxveld-Giessendam, acting on instructions from the British subsidiary of Royal Boskalis Westminster nv.
The ‘Prins der Nederlanden’ is one of two new hopper dredgers currently being built for Boskalis. Both ships will be 156 meters long, with a hopper capacity of approximately 16,000 m³. The ships were specially designed for the dredging and transportation of sand and sludge. They will be used by Boskalis throughout the world on dredging projects such as land reclamation and harbor construction. The construction of the two ships is part of the long-term plans for the Boskalis fleet. Some of the plans for the fleet include increasing capacity in the light of market developments, others the replacement of older tonnage by highly efficient, state-of-the-art ships. For example, in November 2000, the mid-size hopper 'Coastway' (4,900 m³) was launched and 2002 saw the extension of the jumbohopper 'WD Fairway' to a megahopper of 35,500 m³. The ‘Prins der Nederlanden’ and her sister ship will be the cost leaders in their class. The ‘Prins der Nederlanden’ will go into service in February 2004. The second ship will follow later that year.