News

Friday, May 05, 2000
Litton Wins Cruise Order Pending Title XI OK

Litton Ingalls Shipbuilding signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with SeaAmerica Cruise Lines, Inc., based in Hollywood, Fla. Under the MOA, LSS and SeaAmerica will develop a ship design leading to contract negotiations for the construction of two 42,000-ton, 1,000-passenger cruise ships. The program will include options for two additional ships.

Construction of the ships would utilize both of Litton Ship Systems' production facilities, Litton Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula and Litton Avondale Industries in New Orleans, and would maximize the resources and experience of both shipyards to achieve operating synergies.

Accommodations will include 87 percent outside cabins (most with private balconies), one of the most luxurious spas afloat, full theater, both hospitality and luxury suites, casino, and alternative dining options. Uniquely, the SeaAmerica vessels will also offer the most elaborate and multi-functional conference center facilities ever offered on a cruise ship.

In March 1999, Litton Ingalls Shipbuilding signed a contract with American Classic Voyages Co., worth a total potential value of $1.4 billion, to build two 1,900-passenger cruise ships, with an option for a third. Construction of the first ship will begin in July, with delivery scheduled in early 2003.

Friede Goldman Halter Finalizes $40 Million in New Contracts

Friede Goldman Halter, Inc. announced it has recently finalized six new contracts with a total value of approximately $40 million. The contracts are with the following customers:

· The Venezuelan government for the construction of two 153-ft. LCU-type logistics support vessels. Financing for the project has been secured through the Export-Import Bank and all guarantees have been obtained. Construction for the vessels is anticipated to begin during the second quarter at the company's Moss Point Marine shipyard in Escatawpa, Miss. and delivery is slated for the fourth quarter of 2001.

· Atwood Oceanics for the design and construction of a deepwater mooring system. The eight point combination traction-winch/windlass mooring system will be installed on Atwood Eagle, a semisubmersible drilling rig capable of operating in water depths up to 5,000 ft. The project will be designed by the FGH Engineered Products Group's AmClyde division and manufactured at the group's BLM Offshore facility in Nantes, France. Delivery is scheduled for January 2001.

· Transocean Sedco Forex for winterization of SEDCO 714 semisubmersible drilling unit. The work will be performed at Friede Goldman Newfoundland's Cow Head Offshore fabrication facility in Newfoundland, Canada. The initial scope of work is expected to be completed by the end of the second quarter.

· Atwood Oceanics for the fabrication and installation of equipment to enhance seafloor sliding characteristics for the Atwood Richmond submersible drilling unit. Work has begun at Friede Goldman Offshore Texas' Dockyard facility and is expected to be completed by the end of the second quarter of 2000.

· Subsidiaries of Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. for the construction of two casino barges. Fabrication of block modules will take place at the Halter Gulfport facility with final assembly at the company's Port Bienville shipyard. Completion is scheduled for second quarter of 2000.

· Thoma-Sea Boat Builders for the construction of a 150 x 50 ft. tugboat hull and superstructure. The project will be executed at the company's Lockport, La. yard and is scheduled for completion in the fourth quarter of 2000.

New Contract for SENESCO

The Southeastern New England Shipbuilding Corporation (SENESCO) has been awarded a contract to build a 180 x 50 x 8 ft. ocean-class deck barge, with an option for a second vessel. The announcement came during a recent celebration marking the completion of the company's first contracted vessel.

The latest customer contract comes from REICON Group LLC, Staten Island, N.Y. The barge will be capable of carrying a crawler crane with a deck loading of 2,000 lbs. per sq. ft. REICON is affiliated with Reinauer Transportation of Newark, N.J., which owns and operates numerous fuel and cargo barges on the East Coast.

For SENESCO, the award of the third contract is seen as an industry sign of acceptance. Richard Carpenter, one of the company's founders, said the new contract bodes well for employment at the shipyard, but he did not know if and when additional shipyard workers would be hired. The company currently employs a workcrew of 60.

Construction on the new vessel is underway, and is scheduled for completion in four months.

R&R Completes Drydock

R & R Marine Maintenance, Inc. located in Port Arthur, Texas, completed construction on its 200 x 96 x 30 ft. drydock. With capabilities of 4,200 long tons, the drydock is the largest in the area. Construction began in February, 1999.

R & R was started in 1989 as a ship repair and maintenance facility with a full service machine shop. In 1991 the company acquired a new facility with 1,500 ft. of dock space. For the past nine years, the company has done mostly topside work, fabrication and machine work.

In December 1998, R & R decided to diversify to the supply boat, barge and tug business. With the only large heavy lift drydocks in the Houston or Lake Charles area, the company opted to build a small vessel drydock. The cost of the construction was $3.5 million.

Chicago Police Choose Cummins QSM11 for Repower

A lot of things have changed in the world of marine power since the Chicago Police force took delivery of two 44-ft. patrol boats from Gladding and Hearn in the early 1980s. One of these changes is performance expectations; another is emission regulations. The police force was looking for power to meet both of these standards. The boat was originally built with a pair of eight cylinder two stroke engines rated at 325 hp each. The police force is replacing them with a pair of Cummins six-cylinder QSM11 engines rated at 535 hp each. The new engines are being delivered with Twin Disc MG5114A 1.92:1 gears.

The QSM11 is equipped with the Quantum System, a full-authority marine electronic and fuel and control system with a range of standard and optional features. Standard features of the six-cylinder in-line 11-liter displacement QSM11 include an Engine Control Module (ECM), electronic engine sensors, diagnostics, engine speed control and analog displays. Compact and lightweight, the engine is marketed as an alternative to "stretched" engines of smaller displacement. The QSM11 meets marine emissions regulations for new construction and repowers.

At 535 hp (399kW), the engine boasts the best fuel economy offered in its power range (.345 bsfc). It also features a precisely matched Holset turbocharger and seawater aftercooling. Originally introduced in October, 1998, the QSM11 is also available in 635 hp for recreational high-output applications and 580 hp for commercial intermittent applications.

The repower is being carried out at MCM Marine's shipyard in Sault St. Marie, Mich.

Seminole Sells Towboats and Barges

Tampa-based Seminole Electric Cooperative, Inc., has announced the sale of two 7,200 hp river towboats, two 1,350 hp towboats, and two superjumbo, open top hopper barges to various marine industry operators for $8.2 million. Prior to these transactions, the Cooperative sold 16 barges for approximately $3.3 million, in March and early April.

Sales are imminent on four 1,350 hp towboats and 20 barges. In addition, 16 Seminole superjumbo barges (currently pending sale) are in service under short term lease to a Mississippi River coal transporter. Additional superjumbo barges and towboats are available for sale.

The Cooperative has terminated its long-term barge charters and is now the outright owner of all the barges, allowing marine industry operators immediate delivery on the remaining equipment. Six towboats (one 7,200 hp, one 4,600 hp, and four 1,350 hp) remain under charter and are available for sale to the highest bidder, with closing scheduled for July 30.

Seminole's marine fleet previously was used to transport coal to the Seminole Generating Station, in Putnam County, near Palatka, Fla.

Seminole has engaged L&R Midland, Inc., Houston, as its exclusive broker for sale of Seminole vessels. Interested parties may contact L&R Midland at tel: 713-316-2062; fax: 713-680-9704, or by email at rclark@lrmidland.com for additional information or to inspect the vessels.

Ferry Re-engined at Bay Ship

Red & White Fleet's ferry Harbor Princess recently underwent USCG annual inspection, re-engining, numerous repairs and ADA upgrades at Bay Ship & Yacht's Alameda, Calif. shipyard and drydock facility. Primary work included replacement of both main drive engines, fabrication of new main engine exhaust piping, installation of cooling system for engine after cooler circuits, replacement of auxiliary generators and extensive machinery ventilation modifications.

While Harbor Princess was at Bay Ship, extensive work was also completed for an ADA accessible head, including steel work, joinery, fittings, electrical, piping and ventilation.

Additional work included re-piping for engine cooling system, engine/reduction gear modifications, steel repair to decks, engineering of engine room ventilation and exhaust, servicing of sea valves and shafting.

Extensive cleaning, preparation and painting was also done in the following areas: hull, waterline to sponson, including lettering and numbering, weather deck and ADA accessible head.

Kvichak Building Two Vessels for Hawaii

Maui Magic, a 54 ft. catamaran designed by Morrelli & Melvin of San Diego, is the fifth Kvichak Marine Industries-constructed catamaran destined for Hawaii.

The vessel will operate out of Maalaea Harbor in Maui taking snorkelers and sightseers to Molokini Crater. With a beam of 17 ft. , the catamaran will be USCG approved for 71 passengers plus a crew of four. Maui Magic, scheduled for delivery in July 2000, will cruise at 20 knots with top speed of 22 knots and will be powered by a pair of Cummins 6CTA diesel engines, driving 28-in. stainless steel propellers through ZF IRM 305A marine gears.

Additionally, Kvichak is constructing a 64 ft. all-aluminum catamaran for Pacific Whale Foundation (PWF) of Kihei, Hawaii, scheduled for delivery in January 2001. The cat, to be named Ocean Odyssey, is the second catamaran built by Kvichak for PWF, and will join PWF's fleet for the winter migration of humpback whales.

Designed by Crowther Multihulls of Australia, Ocean Odyssey will be built to USCG regulations for 149 passengers. The 64 x 28 ft. vessel will operate for PWF's Eco-Adventure cruises, which include snorkeling, wild dolphin watching and whale watching tours.

With a cruising speed of 23 knots, and a top speed of 25 knots, propulsion power for the vessel will come from customer-furnished twin Cummins KTA19-M4 diesels. Each engine is rated for 700 bhp at 2,100 rpm, and will drive a Nibral 30 in. propeller through a ZF IRM 350-A2 marine transmission.

New Study Shows Transportation Impacts Of Dam Breaching A study shows breaching four federal dams on the lower Snake River could reduce barge and ocean container shipping operations on the Columbia-Snake river system, increase freight transportation costs, and add to highway and rail traffic.

Breaching of the four federal dams is one of several options under consideration to improve fish habitat and migration return rates for threatened or endangered salmon and steelhead runs in the Columbia-Snake river system.

The study focused specifically on the impacts of dam breaching on the regional transportation system, rather than the broader, national impacts explored in a recently released study by the USACE and National Marine Fisheries Service.

Breaching the Lower Snake River Dams: Transportation Impacts in Oregon was jointly sponsored by the Port of Portland, Oregon Department of Agriculture, Oregon Economic and Community Development Department and the Oregon Department of Transportation. The study was conducted by HDR Engineering Inc., a leading architecture and engineering consulting firm with offices in Tigard, Ore., in association with Ogden Beeman & Associates Inc. and TW Environmental Inc., both of Portland. If the earthen portions of the lower Snake River dams were removed, the HDR Engineering study found:

· Barging on the Snake River would cease, resulting in shippers either trucking their freight further to ports on the Columbia River, or finding alternative means of transporting their goods to and from international port facilities.

· Most of the additional trucking would occur in Washington State.

· The reduced demand for barge service would result in a potential loss of income to the Columbia-Snake river barge industry of between $4 million and $11 million per year.

· Some 9,000 full export containers now shipped through the Port of Portland annually could be diverted to Puget Sound ports, or other shipping points such as the Gulf of Mexico and the East Coast.

· Two or more ocean container carriers currently serving the Port of Portland may choose to stop calling. This would eliminate direct container service to and from South America, Europe and Australia/New Zealand, and could result in reduced container service between Portland and Asia.

· If the large volume of commodities that move on the Snake River by barge were shifted to truck and rail modes, the existing transportation system infrastructure, both roads and rails, may not be able to provide the same level of service as they do today.

· Agriculture land in eastern Oregon and Washington with yields of fewer than 45 bushels per acre could be taken out of production due to increased costs for inland transportation of grain.

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