News Briefs

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

August 18, 2000

San Francisco Catamarans Get Cummins Power

Nichols Brothers Boatbuilders are building a highspeed catamaran ferry for San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation district. Designed by International Catamaran Designs (INCAT) of Sydney Australia, this will be Nichols Brothers 27th U.S. built highspeed catamaran.

The vessel will be 139 ft. overall with a 34-ft. beam and draft of 9 ft. The individual hulls will have a beam of 9 ft.. A 37-knot speed is predicted with four 16-cylinder Cummins KTA50-M2 main engines delivering 1,600 hp each at 1800 rpm. Each IMO emission certified engine will drive a Hamilton model 571 water jet through a ZF Marine BU 460D marine gear. Electrical service will be provided by a 125 kW generator set powered by a Cummins Marine 6CT8.3DM engine.

"This is our first project with the Nichols Brothers yard and with Golden Gate Transportation," says Cummins World Commercial Marine Sales manger Geoff Conrad, "Together with other projects, both completed and in the development stages, this boat demonstrates Cummins' ability to deliver on power-to-weight ratio as well as engine dimensions in the demanding fast ferry market."

With a capacity of 400 passengers, the 6,400 hp aluminum catamaran will serve a route between Larkspur and the San Francisco waterfront. Nichols Brothers are also building a catamaran ferry for Catalina Express Lines. Also designed by International Catamaran Designs of Sydney Australia, the new 37-knot 378-passenger boat will join the owner's eight-boat fleet to make the 26-mile run between Long Beach and Catalina Island in about 45 to 50 minutes. "This will replace a 27-knot 360 catamaran that is currently in our fleet," says Catlaina Express president Greg Bombard.

Like the 139-ft. boat for San Francisco, the Catalina boat will be powered by four of Cummins KTA50-M2 main engines (two in each hull) delivering 1,600 hp each at 1,800 rpm. Explaining the choice of Cummins engines Bomabard says, "When we decided to go to the quad jets from twins, these engines gave us the best horsepower to weight ratio as well as the best cost of operating in terms of time between overhauls and the fuel burn looked good for the 6,400 hp."

Both sets of engines will turn into ZF reduction gears, but the Catalina boat will use four of the larger Hamilton 651 water-jets while the San Francisco boat will drive the same horsepower through four Hamilton 571 water-jets. "When you build a boat like this it is important to look to ahead and the bigger jets give us opportunity to increase the horsepower and speed in future." The Catalina boat will also incorporate a "third bow" to prevent head seas from slapping on the underside of the boat. The two hulls of the 147 x 35 ft. boat will each have beams of 9 ft. The new vessel will enter service in the spring of 2001.

Crowley Marine Services Receives Environmental Protection Award

The United States Coast Guard presented Crowley Marine Services, Inc. (CMS), with the William M. Benkert Award, the premier national award recognizing excellence in marine environmental protection.

The award was presented by Rear Admiral R.C. North, Assistant Commandant for Marine Safety and Environmental Protection, U.S. Coast Guard, to Tom Crowley, Jr., Chairman, President and CEO of Crowley Maritime Corporation, CMS' parent company, during the American Petroleum Institute (API) Tanker Conference in La Jolla, Calif. Charlie Nalen, Vice President, Environmental Affairs, Safety & Quality for Crowley Maritime Corporation, was also in attendance to accept the award on behalf of the company.

The Coast Guard said Crowley was selected for the award because as vessel and facilities operators, Crowley had "implemented outstanding marine environmental protection programs - programs that far exceed mere compliance with industrial and regulatory standards."

Bisso Tapped to Clear Sunken Drydock

Bisso Marine Co. Inc. has been awarded the contract to refloat and remove the Halter-Calcasieu drydock that sank in 40 ft. of water in the Calcasieu River on June 16.

The drydock began taking on water while shipyard workers were trying to lift a ship aboard. The drydock slid out into the Calcasieu Ship Channel and sank, blocking navigation to the wharves 10 to 15 miles upriver that serve oceangoing tankers.

The M/V William A. Bisso Jr. was mobilized to the scene to begin survey and diving operations. Salvage plans call for the drydock to be cut in twelve sections and removed from the ship channel.

Bisso has also been awarded the salvage contract to raise the Balmoral Sea from the Industrial Canal site in New Orleans, where the ship listed, rolled over and sank on June 27. Cal Dive International, owners of the vessel, approved preliminary salvage plans, and a thorough diving survey and removal of debris to clear the area has begun.

A heliport, life boats, and a stern mounted crane will be removed from the deck, along with other equipment aboard the vessel. The plans also call for salvage wires to sling the vessel and roll it upright before lifting the 614-ton ship to the surface.

Globe Wireless Releases GlobeOffshore Version 2.0

Globe Wireless has released GlobeOffshore version 2.0. GlobeOffshore is designed to streamline the management of offshore workboats both aboard the vessel and in the shore office. The shipside component captures vessel activities, financial codes, cargo, crew, engine, anchor handling information, positional data, and more. The data is automatically transferred to the shoreside office component and manipulated to generate reports and track vessels. It provides owners and managers with the critical data required to make informed operational and strategic decisions.

Two new features of version 2.0 are the ability of GlobeOffshore to generate a Master's Log aboard the vessel and the added compatibility with major MIS systems including, Oracle, Microsoft SQL, and Sybase.

The GlobeOffshore system is compatible with the Globe Communication Center, provided by Globe Wireless. The Globe Communication Center is the link between the vessel and Globe Wireless's complete maritime communication solution.

Newport News Again Gets Top Health and Safety Rating

Newport News Shipbuilding has received the U.S. Government's highest rating for excellence in workplace health and safety. The company has been re-certified at the prestigious Star level of OSHA's Voluntary Protection Program (VPP).

OSHA awards the Star only to those companies with comprehensive, successful safety and health programs that are in the forefront of employee protection and demonstrate continuous improvement. Those selected to receive the rating must also have incidence and lost workday case rates that are at- or-below the national average for their particular industry for a minimum of three years. The injury rates for Newport News Shipbuilding are 50 percent better than the average rates for the shipbuilding and repair industry in general.

Newport News Shipbuilding first received the Star rating in 1995. Star VPP plants are revisited by OSHA every three to five years to verify that the site is still meeting the VPP Star standard. An extensive audit to re-certify NNS was conducted by OSHA officials earlier this year. The audit included hundreds of interviews with employees across the company.

Newport News Shipbuilding's nearly 17,000 employees make it the largest single workplace in the Star program, and it is the only shipyard to have the Star rating.

Marcon Sells 400-Ft. RoRo Barge

Marcon International, Inc. reported that Jore Corp. of Seattle, Wash. has purchased the U.S. flag, 400 x 105 x 20 ft. ocean double-deck barge 500-3, which was set up for RoRo with a capacity of 105 trailers.

The ABS classed barge was originally built in 1983 by FMC Corporation; Portland, Or and had been operating last in Caribbean Service by Crowley Maritime until being declared surplus to their requirements. Barge was located in Jacksonville, Fla. at the time of purchase.

The new owners just drydocked the barge in Tampa, Fla. and are planning to remove about 70 ft. of the house and are fitting a weardeck on the upper deck. The barge, which is being renamed American Trader, is expected to enter service as a full house barge with RoRo capability in about three months.

To-date this year, Marcon has sold 32 vessels and barges including over 60,000 dwt in ocean deck barges. Sales on an additional four vessels and barges are expected to conclude within the next 30 days.

Marcon acted as sole and exclusive broker in the sale. Receives A New Life

Transas has recently launched its fully re-designed web site at, which now contains a number of innovative new features and advantages, to simplify and speed up browsing through its pages.

In response to demands from the increasingly automated and e-commerce oriented marine market, Transas has embarked on a total make-over of the entire site, including improvements to the product descriptions, which are now even more detailed and better illustrated.

The sections for Simulation and Marine Navigation Systems have been enhanced with demo versions and presentations. In the Navigational Simulator section, visitors can download a video presentation.

Participation in online discussion forums is another interactive tool added to the site, giving visitors an excellent opportunity to exchange their opinions on a variety of issues as well as obtain qualified consultations from Transas experts. Additionally, the new web site contains various express polls with automatic vote counting.

The refined structure of the new Transas web site will simplify searches for information, with access to the Search System through just a click from every page. The new corporate site also provides a printer-friendly format for all documents and graphics.

DLJ Wins Corporate Challenge Cup

The New York firm of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ) won Shake-A-Leg-Newport's eighth annual Wall Street and Corporate Challenge Cup, held July 7-8. The regatta, which has become a Newport tradition for business executives willing to trade their suits for sailing attire, was contested in vintage America's Cup 12-Meter yachts on Narragansett Bay and presented by sponsor Hyatt Regency Newport.

With eight races completed, DLJ posted 272 points to win, topping runner-up E Bond Trade (Walnut Creek, Calif.) with 259. Friends Of Shake-A-Leg Two finished third with 255. First Union (Charlotte, N.C.), which was the defending champion, finished fourth, while '98 winner MBIA (Amorack, N.Y), Friends Of Shake-A-Leg One and Fleet Financial Services (Boston, Mass./Providence, R.I.) placed fifth through seventh, respectively.

The syndicates each raised $30,000 to benefit the non-profit Shake-A-Leg Newport and its various rehabilitation programs for people with spinal cord injuries.

Camera System Allows For Vessel Investigation

Following the arrival of M/V Neptune Jasper at the Sri Lankan capitol and port city of Colombo, the vessel's crew spoke of a vibration that was occurring in the propeller shaft. Taking immediate action was the Colombo Engineering dive team who was summoned to examine the 20 ft. diameter prop. Using a JW Fisher DV-2 underwater camera system, the group was able to shoot an underwater video inspection that was then observed by an agent of Lloyd's Register of Shipping, who in turn discovered that one of the vessel's four propeller blades had been sheared off.

The JW Fisher camera allowed the shipping agent to perform an accurate assessment regarding the problem as well as the necessary repairs involved. Actions taken were that the propeller blade opposite the sheared propeller blade should be cut off to balance the rotation. Immediate action was necessary, as the drive shaft bearings would be severely damaged if left unrepaired.

Extensive oxy-arc underwater cutting on the required blade, which measured 97-in. with an 8-in. thickness. Working around-the-clock, the team was able to successfully complete the job despite obstacles as bad weather and underwater currents. Following this, M/V Neptune underwent sea trials where it was discovered that the vibration had been eliminated and the vessel was able to move on to its destination carrying its consignment of containers.

While the Fishers DV-2 camera is designed to used as a deep water drop camera, many commercial diving companies utilize the system as a diver-held camera.

Penn Yan Wins NYC Patrol Boat Contract

Penn Yan Boats has been awarded a contract to provide a trio of its Pendragon patrol boats to New York City's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). The contract calls for Model 2001 Spector Outboard boats with trailers, which will be used at the (DEP) facility in Vanhalla, N.Y.

USACE Seeks Bids

The Marine Design Center of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) intends to contract for one newly constructed steel floating crane for service on the Mississippi River and its tributaries. The approximate dimension of the vessel are 70 ft. in length, 35 ft. in beam and 6 ft. depth at side. The approximate capacity of the pedestal mounted crane shall be 40 to 60 tons The Vessel shall be of all-welded steel construction, and shall be designed, built, and classed to American Bureau of Shipping rules. The contract will utilize a multi-phased contracting methodology. Liquidated damages are included in the contract, and bonding is required.

The Invitation For Bid package will be available in August 2000, with a bid opening planned for early September 2000. Interested parties may contact: US. Army Corps of Engineers, Philadelphia District, Wanamaker Building, 100 Penn Square East, Philadelphia, PA 19107-3391, Attn: CENAP-CT

Bath Iron Works Lands $9.2 Million Project

The Office Of Naval Research awarded $9.2 million to General Dynamics Bath Iron Works to design and manufacture an advanced propulsion system for a technical demonstration vessel. Known as Advanced Hull Form Inshore Demonstrator (AHFID), the project directly supports the Navy's decision to implement electric drive in future naval combatants.

The AHFID award is the culmination of the Office of Naval Research technology symposium for Maine businesses and educational institutions held in Portland during June 1999. In the AHFID program, the University of Maine will be furthering the technologically driven advanced materials engineering. The propulsion motor will be housed in a pod fabricated with advanced composite materials designed by the University. The pod will contain embedded sensors that can calculate the performance of the propulsion motor, will be able to monitor the structural health of the composite materials.

Slater Wins Top Award at Seamen's Church

The Seamen's Church Institute held its annual Silver Bell Awards Dinner on June 27, where Rodney Slater, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, was presented with the Institute's top honor for his commitment to maritime interests.

As Secretary, Slater worked with Congress to improve the investment in the nation's transportation infrastructure, as well as ensuring safety on American waterways and at sea.

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