GUIDO PERLA & ASSOCIATES, Seattle, Washington, and Spain’s SENER INGENIERIA Y SISTEMAS have teamed up to develop the detailed structure and outfitting engineering of an oceanographic research ship, designated the AGOR-26. SENER’s computer-aided ship design and production system, FORAN, will be used for the work, most of which will be carried out in Seattle by GPA staff assisted by SENER engineers. A second SENER team will be working in parallel from its Tres Cantos offices. AGOR-26 will be configured as a Small Waterplane Area Twin Hull (SWATH) vessel following a conceptual design made by LOCKHEED MARTIN LAUNCHING SYSTEMS, Middle River, Maryland, in response to a requirement from the OFFICE OF NAVAL RESEARCH, the Oceanographer of the US Navy. The SWATH concept consists of two submarine-like lower hulls completely submerged, each connected to a high and wide platform above water by a vertical structure with a relatively small waterplane. SWATH-designed ships offer superior operational capabilities, a substantial working deck area, and outstanding seakeeping, in particular the ability to remain stable even in rough seas. AGOR-26 will be built by ATLANTIC MARINE, Jacksonville, Florida. The 2,500-ton ship will be 182 feet long with an 88-foot beam. Cutting of the first steel plates is scheduled for early September and delivery is expected in 2001. The vessel will be operated by the UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII for general-purpose oceanographic research. “Our reputation is highly dependent on the quality and timeliness of our product. We are confident that SENER has the experience and resources to meet the requirements of this joint project,” says GPA President Guido Perla.