Just weeks after delivery of the first ship in the series of product tankers
under construction at Aker Philadelphia Shipyard, major milestones were
achieved on two subsequent vessels. Hull 006, the second product tanker in
the series, has been floated from its berth in the yard's Building Dock.
Four days later, steel cutting began
for Hull 009, the fifth vessel in the
series, marking start of production on that ship. With two other tankers
also in production, the yard now once again has four of the 600-foot long
MT 46 Veteran Class tanker vessels under construction simultaneously.
On March 19, the yard's Building Dock was flooded, floating
Hull 006 off its keel blocks in advance of the ship's move to the nearby
Outfitting Dock, where testing and commissioning of the vessel will take
place. When completed this summer, the ship will join its predecessor, the
Overseas Houston, in American Shipping Corporation
's (ASC) fleet. The
series of up to 16 double-hulled, environmentally friendly product tankers
are owned by ASC, a sister company of the yard, and are bareboat chartered
to Overseas Shipholding Group, Inc. (OSG) as part of a visionary
arrangement to bring these vessels to U.S. waterways.
In addition, steel cutting for Hull 009 began on Friday, March 23,
on one of the yard's two state-of-the-art plasma cutting machines, with Ms.
Raeleen Geeslin of OSG's shipyard site office ceremonially activating the
process. The fifth tanker vessel is scheduled to be completed in 2008.