Alion Ramp Makes for Safer Ship-to-Ship Transfers

Maritime Reporter & Engineering News
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The ability to readily transport personnel and equipment from one ship to another is vital to the success of many U.S. Navy operations, particularly when it comes to seabasing. But tumultuous waters and weather conditions can make the transfer process extremely difficult, placing both the crew and mission in harm’s way.
Under contract of the Office of Naval Research, Alion Science and Technology began work on a solution to make the process safer, inventing the Transfer At Sea (TAS) system, an actively controlled ramp to help neutralize Mother Nature’s effects on ship to ship transfers.
The uniquely-designed system counteracts the forces of waves and weather to function in choppy and turbulent seas with waves as high as 2.5 meters and winds as fast as 21 knots.
Under current procedures, navy crew – often lugging gear and equipment – must trudge across an unstable bridge connecting two vessels that are rising, falling, rocking and twisting at dissimilar rates.
So how does Alion’s TAS system work? Pivoting at its bases to counter the forces of rough seas and weather, the ramp reduces rolling and pitching to make transfers a steadier operation.
“The key to our solution is the active technologies Alion developed, which include an articulating platform and a sliding foot,” said Pete Flemming, VP and Manager of Ship Design Operation at Alion.
“These components automatically compensate for the varying movements of the two ships. This allows the use of a structurally-efficient ramp with mitigated motions, even in Sea State Four conditions.”
 Scaled versions of the ramp have been put to the test, first as a 1/12th scale model, then at quarter size. The success of the quarter scale real-world trial (which can be seen on Alion’s YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/user/alionmedia) “proved the viability of the system,” according to Alion, and warranted construction of a full-size demonstrator, scheduled to begin testing in September 2013.
If the ramp achieves its goal, it will make transferring, personnel, cargo, equipment – or anything for that matter – safer, Alion believes, ultimately pushing the Navy one step closer toward efficient seabasing.
And though the TAS system was initially created for the Navy, Mr. Flemming noted the potential for its future outside of the military sector. “There is a definite need for a similar system for commercial vessels,” he said. “[The ramp] could be used to transfer cargo from ships that are too large for a port to smaller vessels or could even be used to move cargo or people from ships that have lost power.”
But maintaining focus on the present goal, Mr. Flemming said, “Those uses are a long way off. The Navy is our priority.”
 

(As published in the August 2013 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News - www.marinelink.com)

Maritime Reporter July 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Technology

Japanese Technology Helps Farmers to Changes in Climate

The Japanese technology firms are using their experience in saving energy and in cloud technology to help farmers cope with changes in climate, cheaper imports and declining labor.

Kvaerner in Statoil Unmanned Platform Project

Kvaerner say that Statoil has awarded it a concept study related to a standardised, unmanned dry tree wellhead platform for the Oseberg Future Development project.

TMT CEO Files $100m IP Suit Over Vessel Sale

Hsin-Chi Su, Chairman and CEO of Today Makes Tomorrow Group (TMT) launched a suit in Texas federal court on July 28, 2014, alleging that a planned bankruptcy sale of three company ships, including M.

New Products

Servowatch to Showcase New AMC Range at SMM

Servowatch Systems, a U.K.-based business unit of the Electrical and Automation division of India’s engineering giant Larsen & Toubro, said its exhibition stand

Ferguson Norge Unveils New NORSOK Workshops

As a result of market demand for NORSOK workspace modules, Ferguson Norge, specialists in the rental of DNV 2.7-1 / EN 12079 certified offshore containers, refrigeration/freezer modules,

Keppel Delivers 4th Jackup Rig to Qatar

Keppel FELS Limited (Keppel FELS) has delivered its fourth jackup rig, "Dukhan", to Gulf Drilling International Ltd. q.s.c. (GDI) of Qatar nine days ahead of schedule,

Navy

Mexican Navy Delegation Visits NSSA

The U.S. Navy reported that its Norfolk Ship Support Activity (NSSA) welcomed the Mexican Navy Delegation to Building CEP-200, Naval Station Norfolk, Aug. 21 for

Airbus May Sell Stake in Submarine Supplier

Airbus is considering a sale of its 49 percent stake in submarine supplier Atlas Elektronik as part of a reshuffle of its military business, German newspaper Die

Today in U.S. Naval History: August 22

Today in U.S. Naval History - August 22 1912 - Birthday of Dental Corps 1945 - First surrender of Japanese garrison at end of World War II; USS Levy receives

Eye on the Navy

Mexican Navy Delegation Visits NSSA

The U.S. Navy reported that its Norfolk Ship Support Activity (NSSA) welcomed the Mexican Navy Delegation to Building CEP-200, Naval Station Norfolk, Aug. 21 for

Navy CNO Sets Out Annual 'Navigation Plan'

The Navy's top leader has released a detailed plan that highlights the U.S. Navy's intended track and investments for the next 5 fiscal years, informs Chief of Naval Operations Public Affairs.

Harris Secures Certification for its Multi-channel Manpack Radio

Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS) has received Type-1 National Security Agency (NSA) certification for its Falcon III® RF-340M multi-channel manpack radio. The certification

 
 
Maritime Standards Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1435 sec (7 req/sec)