MMS Moving to Mandate Rig Worker Safety Standards
According to a June 23 report from The New York Times, the worker-safety standards in place for offshore oil rigs before the Deepwater Horizon blast two months ago were voluntary and developed in consultation with the oil industry. The report said Doug Slitor, now the acting chief of offshore regulatory programs at the reorganized MMS, told members of the House Education and Labor Committee that his office is now working to turn the once-recommended worker safety guidelines -- drafted with the American Petroleum Institute -- into a mandatory program. (Source: The New York Times)
Senate Democrats Want Inspection of All Rigs
According to a May 20 report from RTTNews, Senate Democrats are urging President Barack Obama to order inspections of all offshore oil rigs. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., was joined by Senators Richard Durbin, D-Ill., Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Robert Menendez, D-N.J., in sending a letter to Obama asking him to order the inspections. (Source: RTTNews)
Hyundai Heavy Closes Onsan offshore
Hyundai Heavy Industries has temporarily shut one of its two factories making offshore oil rigs - Onsan plant in South Korea - due to downturn in the global oil and gas industry. The closure Onsan underscores the dire state of the country’s big shipbuilders as dearth of orders as the crude price rout forces international oil companies to cut spending. “Our ongoing projects will complete in March. From then we do not have a further order to work on, and the operation will stop until we get a new one,” a company spokesman told local media.
O3b Networks, Netcom-Africa Provide Connectivity
O3b Networks announced that the company has signed a multi-year, multi-million dollar deal with Netcom Africa, a provider of satellite and wireless broadband solutions to provide low latency, high capacity broadband connectivity to ships and offshore platforms in Nigeria utilizing O3bs Medium Earth Orbit technology. Nigeria is one of the world’s largest oil producing nations with most multinational oil and gas corporations operating in the region. Despite the availability of multiple submarine cable networks on the coast of the country, service providers have struggled to meet the unique needs of the oil and gas sector. The bandwidth will be delivered over the city of Lagos, the Niger Delta region as well as the offshore oil rigs that comprise approximately 50 platforms.
Drilling Regulator Wants Higher Pay for Inspectors
According to a report from the Associated Press, The head of the U.S. agency responsible for inspecting offshore oil rigs said he wants to raise salaries and hire retired industry engineers to boost the competency of a staff that has been blamed for missing key problems with BP's failed drilling operation in the Gulf. Michael Bromwich, director of the Bureau of Oceans Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, told The Associated Press that the government's reputation for lower wages could make hiring the most talented people more difficult. (Source: The Associated Press)
GMN WebXaccelerator for Ship-to-Shore Comms
Global Marine Networks introduced the GMN webXaccelerator for ship-to-shore and remote communications needs for the commercial fishing, marine transport, cruise ships, offshore oil rigs, and first-response communications coordination markets. The webXaccelerator is a data accelerator and control router that gives users of satellite and other wireless data systems control of their satellite data installations, while providing data speeds up to five times faster than uncompressed rates.
Malta: Sixth largest Maritime Flag Worldwide
The Malta Ships Register has become the sixth largest maritime flag in the world, according to statistics for 2014, says a report in Fenech & Fenech Advocates. Malta has moved up from seventh place in 2013 and has retained its position as the largest in Europe. The Maltese register has not only registered an increase in gross tonnage but has also continued to attract younger vessels to its fleet whilst retaining high standards. Malta has a centuries old Maritime tradition. The strategic location of the Maltese Islands at heart of the Mediterranean Sea…
GE Spotlights Hi-tech Portfolio at OTC 2013
GE continues to expand its technology portfolio to address the challenges of offshore drilling & production and the rigors of deepwater drilling. Several GE business units showcased their latest products and services for the offshore sector in at the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference (OTC), which was expected to draw nearly 90,000 attendees. “With one of the industry’s most comprehensive portfolios of advanced technology solutions and services, GE Oil & Gas is helping to solve complex challenges all around the world,” said Dan Heintzelman, president and CEO of GE Oil & Gas. At the conference, GE Oil & Gas introduced the next-generation SeaONYX™ BOP surface control system and operator interface.
MARAD Signs with Panama City Shipyard
PANAMA CITY, Fla. – U.S. Maritime Administrator David Matsuda today announced a $241 million loan guarantee that will allow the Eastern Shipbuilding Group of Panama City, FL, to build five platform supply vessels (PSVs) for export to Brazil, to provide service in new deepwater oil fields there. “This project means good jobs for Panama City today and a stronger economic future for our country,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. Eastern Shipbuilding Group has built eight PSVs since 2003, with three more under construction. The vessels, built for Boldini S.A.
Marine Coatings Evolve for the Better
Innovation and new technology continue to shape the marine coatings market. A narrowing field of global coatings manufacturers offer new products while improving existing ones to meet customer demand. Ultimately, customer demand, along with environmental compliance pressures are all driving the marine coatings industry as ship owners, operators and shipyards alike seek better products. Customer demands are often related to cost and efficiency. Costs – and the list is a long one – include not just product cost…
EnerMech Makes £10 Million Australian and U.K. Acquisitions
Oil and gas engineering company EnerMech snapped up Australian industrial sector firm Vicon Services and U.K-based pump equipment specialist Total Reclaim Systems Ltd., in deals worth a combined £10 million. The Aberdeen-based mechanical engineering group will introduce new business lines and significantly strengthen its presence in the multi-billion dollar Australian energy sector through the Vicon deal. The acquisition of Total Reclaim Systems (TRS) increases the range of services EnerMech can provide to the drilling sector.
Korean Shipyards in Troubled Water
Struggling with technology and a plunge in oil prices that has discouraged exploration, Korean vessel makers are racking up debt and could show billions of dollars in losses, reports Bloomberg. The Big Three shipbuilders in South Korea ventured into offshore oil rigs starting around 2010 with a goal to avoid direct competition with China. The idea appeared excellent then, with oil prices climbing toward $100 a barrel. Today the strategy seems to have backfired. The deep-ocean strategy is coming back to bite Korean shipyards.
New Coating Dispensing System
Sulzer Mixpac USA, Inc. has launched MIXPAC MixCoat Manual, a new member of its cartridge-based two-component dispensing system line. The lightweight MixCoat Manual protective coating dispensing system features a unique brush assembly on a manual dispenser, which increases stripe coating productivity and speed, the manufacturer said. The system is suited for repairs and rope work on offshore oil and gas, petrochemical, marine, and bridge repair applications. MixCoat Manual offers efficient…
Wärtsilä to Power Six New Pipe-laying Vessels
Wärtsilä has been contracted to supply integrated power solutions to six new offshore Pipe Laying Vessels (PLVs) being built for operation in Brazilian waters. The majority of these orders were booked before the second quarter of 2012. The PLVs will be operating for the Brazilian multinational corporation Petrobras for the construction of pipelines from offshore oil rigs to the mainland. The six vessels are to be built by three different companies at yards in the Netherlands, Brazil and South Korea. The Wärtsilä solutions selected for the six vessels include design, main engines, and propellers and will be delivered during the fourth quarter of 2012 and the first quarter of 2013.
Zamakona Launches North Sea Emergency Vessel
The Zamakona Yards Group said it has successfully launched the vessel Ocean Marilin in its installations in Pasajes in Northern Spain on January 31. The vessel is the second which Zamakona Yards has launched of the three vessels contracted with the Norwegian shipping company, Atlantic Offshore A.S. The principal mission of the vessel will be to provide immediate attention in emergency situations to Offshore Oil Rigs and Installations. Being especially adapted to the severe climatic conditions of the North Sea…
DP Offshore Safety Vessel Launched at Zamakona Yard
Zamakona Yards say they have successfully launched the 'Ocean Marilin' for owners Atlantic Offshore A.S. at their shipyard in Pasajes in Northern Spain. The shipbuilder explains that the principal mission of the vessel will be to provide immediate attention in emergency situations to offshore oil rigs and installations. Being especially adapted to the severe climatic conditions of the North Sea, it will commence operations for the Oil Company TOTAL in the second semester of 2014.
New Engineering Course at GMATS
GMATS has recently added a new course in Marine High Voltage Safety. This course meets the unique demands in the maritime field for training concerning high voltage electrical situations. It has been written in cooperation with current industry leaders who are using high voltage equipment daily. The special needs in the marine environment for high voltage training are addressed in this class as they pertain to propulsion, maintenance and repair. In marine use and ashore the term “high voltage” refers to voltages over six hundred volts. The use of high voltage power is becoming much more common in the marine propulsion field and is commonly found in offshore oil rigs, cruise ships, and new builds.
California to Ban Crude from Trump Offshore Drilling Plan
California will block the transport of petroleum from new offshore oil rigs through its state, officials told Reuters, a move meant to hobble the Trump administration’s effort to vastly expand drilling in U.S. federal waters. California's threat to deny pipeline permits for transporting oil from new leases off the Pacific Coast is the latest step by states trying to halt the biggest proposed expansion in decades of federal oil and gas leasing. Officials in Florida, North and South Carolina…
World's Largest Crane Ship Arrives in Rotterdam
Pieter Schelte Heerema, one of the largest ships in the world with a length of more than three football fields, arrives at the port of Rotterdam for the last works before it is operational. Pieter Schelte Heerema, one of the largest ships in the world, which is capable of lifting oil platforms weighing almost five times the weight of the Eiffel Tower, arrived Thursday in Rotterdam for the last work before it goes into service. The nearly 400-metre (440-yard) long crane ship arrived in Europe's largest port from South Korea where it was built at DSME’s Okpo shipyard, ahead of starting work lifting rigs and laying pipelines this summer. The vessel is 124m (407ft) wide and 382m (1,253ft) long – as long as the Empire State Building is high.
Harvey Gulf Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy
Louisiana-based Harvey Gulf International Marine LLC, which has more than 50 vessels in its fleet and supplies offshore oil rigs among other services, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Houston. Harvey Gulf did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The company said in court papers it had more than $1 billion in debt and has an agreement with lenders to reduce what the company owes. In return lenders would receive the equity in the company when it exits bankruptcy. Other creditors such as suppliers will be paid in full.
Hartzell Introduce New Adjustable Pitch Propellor
The Series 44M with the AM propeller design is suitable for applications from engine room exhaust to cargo hold ventilation fans. The new die-cast aluminum propeller has been specifically engineered to enhance the operating performance of their Series 44M Ductaxial fan. The Series 44M with the new AM propeller is available in sizes 12 to 48 inches and produces up to 65,000 CFM and up to 4 inches of static pressure. The Series 44M with the AM propeller design is available for use in a variety of hostile environment applications, from engine room exhaust to cargo hold ventilation, in offshore oil rigs or workboats. Sean Steimle, President of Hartzell Air Movement, states “The AM propeller is a direct result of listening to our U.S. and global marine customers’ requirements.
Fire in Sauna Shuts World's Northernmost Oilfield
The world's northernmost oilfield was shut on Friday when a fire broke out in a sauna in the oil platform's living quarters, Eni, the Italian oil company that operates the field, said. The Arctic Goliat field is in the Barents Sea about 88 kilometers off the coast of Norway and inside the Arctic Circle. The platform has floating production, storage and offloading facilities and can produce close to 100,000 barrels of crude per day. The fire was quickly put out, and no crew members were injured, although some smoke did develop, Eni said.
OSV Scrapping Rates Up 153% YTD
As the severity of the offshore energy downturn has increased and the likelihood of older vessels returning to work begins to diminish, owners have slowly come round to the importance of scrapping these vessels. According to VesselsValue, U.S. owners might be leading the way.According to VesselsValue, an online valuation and market intelligence service for the maritime and offshore sectors, in this current period of downturn, critics of offshore shipowners will say that owners have been guilty of not scrapping older tonnage in order to maintain a young and advanced fleet.