Offshore: Seacor Raises the Bar Again
Long acknowledged as a firm to watch in U.S. crewboat and fast supply boat innovation, Seacor Marine will be attracting industry attention once again when its latest set of new boats begin delivery in 2014. While this new class of mono-hull boats have some big dimensions, the more noteworthy feature will be the size of its engines.
With 10 vessels in three different classes all more than 200-feet long, this is the largest single order of fast supply boats of their size. Cummins QSK60-M engines, each delivering 2,700 hp, will power all vessels.
There will be four boats in the “202-Class.” Two of these are building at Gulf Craft, while the other two are taking shape at C&G Boat Works. Each of these will have four of the 2700 hp Cummins QSK60-M engines driving Hamilton 810 jets through Twin Disc 61500 gears with 2:1 ratios. The boats will each have capacity for about 68 passengers and a cargo deck in excess of 3,500 sq. ft.
A second set of vessels, designated “Express Class” to denote their higher speed, will deliver from C&G Boat Works. At 210 x 33 ft., these boats will have five Cummins QSK60-M engines for a total of 13,500 hp each. These vessels, three of which were already started in October this year, will have a fifth booster jet on the center line. The same Hamilton model as the others, the center-waterjet will not require steering and reversing buckets as it will only be used in transit for extra speed. And it is speed that gives these boats the “Express” designation as they have a design speed in excess of 37 knots when running light.
“They are pretty much the same below the waterline,” Joe McCall, Seacor’s Senior Project Manager said, “but Incat-Crowther gives them a different look above the waterline.”
The third set of boats is the “Express Plus Class.” At 206 x 33 ft., with five Cummins QSK60-M and Hamilton jets, they are also designed by Incat-Crowther’s Louisiana office. “This class will be just as fast as the “Express Class”, but will have capability to transport 100 passengers,” McCall said, “100 passengers is more than a typical crewboat can carry.” Construction of the “Express Plus Class” boats will begin in 2014 at Gulfcraft Shipyard. “These boats are being built on spec,” McCall said, “but we feel that vessels with these capabilities will be in high demand. These vessels will deliver in late 2015 and early 2016.”
All three classes of vessels will be ABS Classed DP2 and will have three 200-HP bow thrusters. This is enough redundancy that they would still be DP2 even if they lost one bow thruster. The same engines, gears and jets have also been specified for the three classes of boats. “These boats will make better than 20 knots loaded, but we are marketing them for their light boat speeds,” explained McCall.
(As published in the April 2014 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News - http://magazines.marinelink.com/Magazines/MaritimeReporter)