Vessel Focus: Navy Boats

Friday, July 14, 2000
Halter Responds To Venezuelan Navy Needs

Halter Marine has answered the call from the Venezuelan Navy for a variety of patrol boats. The company recently delivered four 80 ft. (24.3 m) boats to the country's government, which completes the contract for the design and construction of 12 total vessels in this size range.

Designed for high speed operations in coastal and riverine environments, the vessels will be used for a variety of patrolling efforts in Venezuelan territorial waters, specifically to counter illegal drug traffic, provide search and rescue assistance, and disaster relief.

Powered by a pair of Detroit Diesel marine engines, the vessels will have a range of 1,000 nm and a maximum speed of 25 knots.

Halter also supplied the last two 54 ft. (16.4 m) patrol boats for the Venezuelan National Guard. This particular contract called for the design and construction of 10 vessels, all of which are propelled by two MTU marine diesel engines with a maximum speed of 36 knots. Bollinger-Built Tornado Kicks Up A Storm Bollinger Shipyards of Lockport, La. launched the USS Tornado, the U.S. Navy's newest Patrol Coast Ship. The 14th member of the Cyclone Class to be built by Bollinger under a sole-source contract with the Navy, it is the first to include design modifications, equipment and armament upgrades as part of the Navy's Pre-Planned Product Improvement.

The vessel is modeled after the successful Vosper Thornycroft Ramadan class design, modified to meet Navy requirements, which entail change in the stern - including a ramp for the launching and recovery - while underway — of naval special warfare boats. Throughout its design/construction process, Tornado was extended from 170 - 179 ft. (51.8 - 54.5 m) and adjusted to decrease its susceptibility to radar detection by reducing its signature.

Featuring a new, fully integrated bridge command and control system to increase its capabilities, Tornado houses a satellite navigation system, forward looking infrared and surface radar with collision avoidance capabilities. Communications encompass Navy standard interior and external voice communications systems.

Also included is an impressive weapons suite, as well as hull and main decks — as on all Bollinger-built Cyclone Class patrol boats — made of steel and aluminum superstructures. Measuring 179 ft. (54.5 m), with a beam of 26 ft. (7.9 m) and a draft of less than eight ft. (2.4 m), Tornado is fully operational through Sea Sate 3. Power is provided by four Paxman diesel engines developing a total of 13,400-hp, driving four, 42-in. diameter propellers through Reintjes reverse/reduction gears. Electrical power is supplied by two 150 kW Caterpillar generators. Holding a fuel capacity of 15,000 gallons, and 1,200 gallons of potable water produced by three water makers, Tornado's continuous speed is above 35 knots.

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