Most modern lifeboats from the river Elbe

By Peter Pospiech at December 05, 2013 05:01
Filed Under: Company News, Shipyards

Hatecke GmbH built nine units for “Norwegian Getaway” 

Lifeboats of the “Norwegian Getaway” coming from the Hatecke GmbH in Drochtersen near the German river Elbe. Each boat features a length of 12.70 m and 5.45 m in width, weight is of 12 to each and they are certified for 300 persons. According to Hatecke GmbH, they are currently one of the leading manufacturers of lifeboats and davit systems. All their products are developed in-house and conform with LSA regulations laid down by the IMO. All lifeboats and rescue boats are delivered with their own inbuilt launching system, as a “ready-to-assemble” package. This helps minimize shipyard installation costs. The 146,600 gt cruise ship has completed its Ems conveyance successfully. Together with its sister ship, the “Norwegian Breakaway”, they belong to the largest, ever built cruise ships in Germany and take around 4.000 passengers. After getting the final equipment, including all the lifeboats, on board, which will be done in Eemshaven, Netherlands, and Bremerhaven, Germany, the vessel will leave the berth for intensive test trails in the North Sea for several days. After this the ship starts in January for an Atlantic crossing from Southampton towards New York and from there to Miami. From here the new cruise ship will start into their official cruise service in the Caribbean Sea. 

As a good traditional behavior the ship has to be named in a ceremony. Norwegian Cruise Line and the Miami Dolphins did announce that the Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders will christen Miami’s ultimate ship, Norwegian Getaway, as the official Godmothers. The Christening Ceremony will take place on February 7, 2014 on board the vessel in Miami.

Image: Archiv PPM News Service

Cruise Lines make further investments

By Peter Pospiech at December 03, 2013 05:00
Filed Under: Company News, General, Shipyards

Royal Caribbean increases number of cabines in the Voyager Class 

The cruising segment is booming: Royal Caribbean upgrades four ships of their fleet and also investments will be done in Germany. 

The cruise shipping company Royal Caribbean continues with its revitalization program and upgrades four vessels of their Voyager Class, which have been approved each for around 3.100 passengers, with additional 75 cabins. Additional refurbishments will be done on the “Navigator of the Seas”, the “Voyager of the Seas”, the “Explorer of the Seas” and the “Adventure of the Seas”. The fifth vessel of this class, the “Mariner of the Seas” has already made its docking time in May 2012.

Entered service in 2002 the "Navigator of the Seas" will receive 81 additional beds

The vessels of the Voyager Class have been built at the Kvaerner Yard in Finland and are in service since 1999. The ships length is of 311 m up to 47 m in width and measured at an average of 137.000 gt. With these refurbishments intends the company to increase the passenger capacity by 4.8 percent. The first ship will have its docking time at the Grand Bahama Shipyard in January 2014. 

Obviously the cruising segment is booming international wide and also unbroken in Germany. “The results for 2013 are very positive: bookings in the first half of the year were clearly above the figures of the previous year”, says Richard Vogel, CEO of the German Tourist Association (DRV). Germany is already today the second largest Cruise Market in Europe. Increasing turnover and passenger numbers can be seen particularly in the oceanic cruise market: increasing numbers of turnover and passenger numbers could be seen last year by over 11 percent. With this more than 1.5 million German guests booked an oceanic cruise.


Image: PPM News Service archiv

Taking the Heat Out of Big Marine Diesels & Putting it to Work

By George Backwell at November 29, 2013 21:38
Filed Under: Marine Diesel Engines

Waste Heat Recovery Systems (WHRS) from specialist suppliers are becoming increasingly popular to boost the overall plant efficiency of large container ship propulsion installations, reducing fuel consumption and thus carbon dioxide emissions. This is evidenced by ABB’s recent US$23-million order to supply no less than fourteen new 8,800 TEU ships with their WHRS package.

MSC Container Ship: Photo credit ABB

The first seven post-panamax vessels will be built at Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co. Ltd., (DSIC) and the other seven vessels at New Times Shipbuilding Co. Ltd., for China International Marine Containers Group Co. and Mediterranean Shipping Co. S.A (MSC). ABB say that their scope of supply includes power turbines with control valves, alternators, reduction gears and dynamic compensators. The package also includes two of their latest generation of turbochargers. The electrical output of the system is 1.65 megawatt (MW).

The combination of large main engine size and high onboard electricity requirement (due to power supply demands of refrigerated containers) makes container vessels particularly well suited for WHRS technology and the take-up is mainly by this type of vessel.

Waste Heat Recovery System (WHRS)
 In marine propulsion plants, around 50 percent or more of the energy from fuel is lost to heat when converted to mechanical work by the main engine. By supplementing a ship’s main propulsion plant with a waste heat recovery solution, up to 4 percent of the lost fuel energy can be recovered and converted into electricity. More efficient energy use also reduces CO2 emissions in relation to the engine’s mechanical power output.

Waste Heat Recovery System Energy: Schematic courtesy of ABB

ABB’s improvements in the efficiency of main engine turbochargers allows a proportion of the exhaust gas to be diverted to a power turbine whose rotational energy is used to produce extra electricity for the vessel via a reduction gearbox and generator, reducing fuel consumption and exhaust gas emissions by up to 4%.

After leaving the turbo units, the gasses are channeled into the exhaust gas boiler which uses this energy source to produce steam. The steam is fed into a steam turbine connected to the same generator as the power turbine. This more than doubles the output of electricity from this generator, which can then be fed into the vessel’s electrical grid. The combined output of this recovery method adds at least 10% to the energy efficiency and thus decreases the overall fuel consumption onboard.

ABB mention that these new ships, due for delivery in 2015 and 2016, and equipped with their WHRS propulsion package will serve under a long-term charter agreement to MSC, one of the world’s largest container ship owners.



LNG to be available in Hamburg and Bremerhaven by 2015

By Peter Pospiech at November 27, 2013 05:32
Filed Under: Company News, Fuels & Lubes, LNG fuel, Ports

Bomin Linde LNG starts the implementation process for both terminals

The plans for building and operating the two terminals in Hamburg and Bremerhaven, the future hubs of the German coastal LNG supply, have come to maturity. Currently, Bomin Linde LNG is finalising preparations to enable manufacturing of the key parts and prompt construction of the LNG facilities. The terminals will be installed on a modular basis and will have sufficient flexibility to quickly meet a rise in demand.

Starting from the strategic hubs Hamburg and Bremerhaven, neighbouring ports such as Kiel, Lübeck, Rostock or Wilhelmshaven can be reliably supplied with LNG. "We are fully on track with the projects and will be able to provide ships in all German ports along the North and Baltic Sea with LNG as a clean fuel," said Bomin Linde LNG Managing Director Ruben Benders. "This is an important step to establishing LNG as a marine fuel," added Mahinde Abeynaike, also Managing Director of Bomin Linde LNG. "The shipping industry needs secured supply of LNG at ports. This is crucial for the success of this economically attractive and green fuel."

The LNG bunker facility in Hamburg

Bomin Linde LNG is also able to provide liquefied natural gas for the marine industry beyond Germany's borders, for example, at the terminal in Nynäshamn next to Stockholm, Sweden, built by the Linde Group. Additionally, Bomin Linde LNG envisages supplying LNG at a new bunkering terminal in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, where the approval request has already been submitted to the authorities. Moreover, Bomin Linde LNG is considering several bunkering facilities at additional international ports to further expand the development of the LNG infrastructure. 

Starting in 2015, sulphur emission limits for ships operating in North and Baltic Sea will be reduced drastically. LNG as a transport fuel will significantly reduce emissions of sulphur oxides, nitrogen oxides, particular matter and CO2. In view of declining natural gas prices compared to oil over the last few years, LNG has become an economically viable fuel alternative. Based on a recent survey of HSH Nordbank, approximately one in five ship owners is planning to either retrofit his fleet with LNG propulsion or order new vessels that run on LNG. 

source: Bomin Linde LNG

Innovation Award for GARÇON

By Peter Pospiech at November 26, 2013 06:33
Filed Under: Company News, General, Motor Yachts & Boats

67m Fast Yacht Support vessel races to victory at major awards ceremony in Florida
The Damen-built 67m Fast Yacht Support vessel, GARÇON, has won the ISS Awards of Distinction for Innovation at the International Superyacht Society Awards Gala in Fort Lauderdale.
GARÇON came out top of an industry-led voting process that assessed five shortlisted entries in the competitive and broad-ranging Innovation category. According to the International Superyacht Society: “The Excellence in Innovation award is given to an individual or business that has demonstrated innovation in their endeavours within the previous year.”

GARÇON was designed and customised according to the requirements of the client, the owner of an 87m luxury superyacht. The vessel’s innovative ‘axe bow’ and underwater body shape enable her to reach speeds between 18-25 knots in all sea states, making this a fast and dependable support ship - whatever the weather. GARÇON, whose sale was brokered by owner’s representative Moran Yacht & Ship, has 235 m² deck space for toys such as tenders, jet skis and sailing dinghies. In addition, the vast deck space makes room for a fully certified helipad with 5000 kg take-off weight for commercial use.
With three Yacht Support vessels already delivered and another four under construction, Damen has responded to growing interest and demand with the creation of a specialised Yacht Support Department headed up by Mark Vermeulen. “Following the success of the SEA AXE vessels, we have expanded the range up to 90 metres in length, with our Yacht Support vessels based on proven heavy-duty platforms, such as Damen’s Offshore Patrol Vessel and Worldwide Support Vessel,” said Vermeulen. “With a ship of these proportions, almost anything is possible. With an inside and outside combined deck space of 800 square metres, these vessels give you huge capacity. And like GARÇON, they look great too. The perfect complement to a luxury superyacht.”

Amels is the exclusive yacht-building member of the Dutch Damen Shipyards Group, established in 1927 and now the largest shipyard in the Netherlands. Damen consists of 40 shipyards throughout the world and employs over 8,000 people in 35 countries. In 2012 the Group delivered over 150 vessels, and generated a turnover of €1.7 billion.


Source / image:Damen Shipyards

New Low-Pressure DF 2-Stroke Engine From Wärtsilä Rolls Out Q3 2014

By George Backwell at November 22, 2013 22:03
Filed Under: LNG fuel, Marine Diesel Engines

The remarkable significance of a new marine diesel technology just announced by Wärtsilä is that the low pressure, dual-fuel (gas/liquid fuel) benefits that are already available to 4-stroke engines, can now be applied to 2-stroke engines as well, thus making the  technology available to the broader merchant shipping market.

The test engine: Photo courtesy of Wärtsilä

Wärtsilä, having announced the successful full scale testing on gas of an RT-flex50DF engine, say that the marine industry is already showing significant interest, evidenced by the fact that more than 130 industry executives from 89 leading shipping companies attended the recent introductory event in Trieste, Italy. 

In his opening speech at the event, Jaakko Eskola, Senior Executive Vice President and President, Wärtsilä Ship Power, stated: “Dual-fuel engine technology is the future; it is a tide that cannot be turned back. Gas is certain to play an increasingly important role in merchant shipping - for both economic and environmental reasons. The introduction of Wärtsilä’s 2-stroke, dual-fuel, low-speed engines is a historic landmark in this process.”

Compared to other technologies, studies have shown that Wärtsilä’s low pressure DF engines offer capital expenditure (CAPEX) reductions of 15-20 per cent. Such a saving is achieved through a substantially simpler and lower cost LNG and gas handling system operating at pressures below 10 bar, and by the fact that no further exhaust gas cleaning systems are needed to meet future emission regulations. The new engines are to be IMO Tier III emissions compliant in gas mode, and the minimum Tier II level is achieved with liquid fuel.

Gas supply pipework to the engine: Photo courtesy of Wärtsilä

While using LNG fuel there are no sulphur emissions and close to zero particulate emissions, and the pilot fuel consumption is extremely low at just one per cent of the fuel used. Furthermore, the technology enables LNG fuel to be used at all engine loads, so there is no need to switch to diesel at low loads – when manoeuvring or in port – as is the case with other DF technologies. This has an obvious impact on the vessel’s exhaust emissions, as well as on operating costs.

According to the manufacturers the first engine utilising this technology, the Wärtsilä RT-flex50DF, will be available for delivery in the third quarter of 2014. Other engines from the company's new Generation X series will follow and are to be available for delivery during 2015 and 2016.  In due course their entire portfolio of  2-stroke engines will be available as low pressure dual-fuel (DF) versions.



Cruise Shipping Companies like to bunker in Hamburg

By Peter Pospiech at November 21, 2013 05:39
Filed Under: Fuels & Lubes, General, Ports

Exactness and reliability at maritime services are important

One factor of the great success of port of Hamburg as a cruise shipping venue is the extremely reliable working port service segment.

In the cruise industry it is very much essential that the ships are precisely on time. This is particularly important for the short trips. The universal port of Hamburg has gained its very good image in the time-sensitive container shipping segment and has now transferred it also into the very ambitious cruise vessels. “It must be a precision landing”, says Stefan Frommann, member of the board of the Friedrich G. Frommann GmbH. The worldwide active company belongs to a small circle of companies who are selling and supplying fuels and lube oils in Hamburg. The company uses, among others, four bunker boats. The latest and newest, “Seeve” and “Dresden II” supplied recently fuel and oils to the “Queen Mary 2”. The huge cruise liner moored in Hamburg in the morning and left the berth in the evening for a mini-cruise to Oslo. Already three days later, the much-loved cruise liner, which has had its very first visit to the Elbe-City in 2004, will be back in Hamburg. At this time the annual cruising balance of the British Cunard Line will be presented on board the company’s flagship. In the evening on the same day the 345 m long vessel leaves the port of Hamburg.

Allways an eyecatcher: the sistership "Queen Elizabeth" of the "Queen Mary2" in Hamburg

That much is clear: “The visit by the “Queen Mary 2” to Hamburg on 6November 2013 will go down in the annals of Hamburg’s cruise industry and become an unforgettable ship’s call for everyone concerned,” said Frank Horch, Senator of the Ministry for Economic, Transport and Innovation Affairs. The visit was not only the 168th call of the current season but also marked the arrival of the 500 000th cruise guest in the city. “For the first time ever Hamburg has achieved this magical mark in a single season and, moreover, done so two years earlier than planned,” announced the visibly proud senator.
This year the Hamburg cruise season will, for the first time, be ending on 31. December. “Initial estimates by the association forecast some 555 000 passengers by the end of the season,” said Gerd Drossel, HCC Managing Director. This represents 29 per cent growth over the previous year (2012: 430 329). In total 177 cruise ships called at the Port of Hamburg (+ 10 per cent over the previous year). 167 of the calls were by ships beginning or ending their cruises, including 32 calls during which there was a partial turn-around, ten were transit calls. The percentage of turn-around guests beginning or ending their cruise in Hamburg increased to 94 per cent (2012: 89 per cent). “According to these figures Hamburg was Germany’s most frequented embarkation or disembarkation port in 2013, once again topping the German cruise port rankings, as was already the case in 2012,” stated Drossel.


image: courtesy of Hamburg Cruise Center

Cracks in hull area

By Peter Pospiech at November 19, 2013 06:00
Filed Under: General, Research & Development, Shipyards

First results presented about MOL COMFORT’s sea damage
Reasons for the severe sea damage of the container vessel MOL COMFORT still not finally cleared.
Together with both the Japanese classification society ClassNK and Mitsubishi Shipyard the shipping company Mitsui O.S.K Lines (MOL) currently investigates the disaster last summer where the 8.110 TEU-container carrier damaged in heavy sea and finally broke in two while underway from Singapore to Jeddah. The crew could escape in life rafts and were picked up by another vessel. Now preliminary results have been released.

Experts conclude, based on the very serious water ingress at the center part of the hull, that a crack in the ships bottom has been occurred. In the course of investigations on board the sister ships of the MOL COMFORT deformations of up to 20 mm have been detected. But there exist still not a clear statement if these deformations have been the reason for the water ingress. Because of this the shipping company, shipyard and the classification society decided on all sister ships – MOL CELEBRATION, MOL COURAGE, MOL CREATION, MOL CHARISMA, MOL COMPETENCE and MOL COMMITMENT – to stiffen this area. On a few of them the repair works meanwhile have been finished. According to MOL the hull in this area is now stiffen twice as ClassNK originally asked for.
Already shortly after the sea damage were repeatedly misconstructions as reasons of the sea damage afloat.

Power Failure Engine Re-start Speed-up in New Maersk Drillships

By George Backwell at November 15, 2013 22:51
Filed Under: Azimuth pod, Gensets

If power is lost to a DPS-controlled drill-ship’s thrusters there is a risk that the rig will drift off its position, which can potentially give rise to huge impacts and the risk of damage to the subsea equipment (Blow Out Preventer (BOP), Riser, and associated equipment). Along with such an unfortunate occurance also will come significant financial impacts; the cost of repairs, new equipment and lost day rates. Clearly, in the event of a power loss, the speed of engine re-start is of critical important.

Drill-ship building scene: Photo courtesy of Maersk Drilling

Since 2011 Maersk Drilling has invested USD 4.5 billion in seven new drilling units; three ultra harsh environment jack-ups at Keppel FELS in Singapore and four ultra deepwater drill-ships at Samsung Heavy Industries in South Korea. In the design of the drill-ships’ electrical propulsion system, Maersk say that their engineers, set the engine emergency start-up time bar higher, looking for a decrease in the usual 30-40 second blackout start-up time. In response engine designer MAN Diesel & Turbo in Germany, the licensee Doosan (which is building the engines), Samsung and ABB (generator manufacturer) put their heads together and delivered: the modified engine is now able to re-start in less than 10 seconds, more precisely, in just 8.5 seconds. How was this achieved?

Drillship image backdrop & technicians: Photo courtesy of Maersk Drilling

Fast Emergency Start-up
The fast start mode (only to be activated during emergency situations) was obtained by optimising and tuning the existing engine systems, that is, the turbochargers, jet assist system, starting air system, governor control system and the AVR (Automatic Voltage Regulator) of the generator.

As a result of these modifications, the engines’ optimum now matched the generator output. This was achieved by de-rating the engines and introducing smaller turbochargers, which has improved the load step performance (the ability to take up load quickly), and this will result in improved performance of the MMC (Multi Machine Control) mode during drilling operations.

As an important spin-off from the work done, decreased fuel oil consumption during low-load operations will result in a yearly fuel saving of circa 5.3% compared with a standard engine set-up.

Interestingly, according to Maersk Drilling, the modified engines now  meet the starting-time requirements for an emergency generator at a nuclear power plant.



Viking launches new evacuation system

By Peter Pospiech at November 14, 2013 06:32
Filed Under: Company News, General

A new super-sized, super-flexible evacuation system from Esbjerg-based company Viking Life - Saving Equipment has just been launched globally. It is a revolutionary hybrid that combines the best of life-boats and life-rafts in one.


"Today, the larger and wider ships, the number of passengers and variation in trim height and angle can be huge in an emergency. The Life Craft is a hugely flexible evacuation system that can handle such extremes," said Vikings Vice President Niels Kinsman.
Life Craft system consists of two main elements: Life Craft itself - a self- floating inflatable boat with four engines with a high degree of maneuverability and safety as well as storage and flotation device, either placed on the deck or built, containing up to four Life Craft - with a capacity of 200 people each, with a total capacity of 800 people.
In 2009, Vikings development teams asked themselves: Is it possible to build a life-saving vessel that combines all the benefits of modern lifeboats, such as self-maneuverability, with the flexibility, convenience as today's life-rafts have? And can such a vessel ensuring a rapid mass evacuation with maximum safety for passengers and crew?
After four long years found the answer: The Viking Life Craft ™ System that changes the discussion about what is best, lifeboat or life-raft, at least when it comes to evacuation systems with large capacity.
There are several advantages of this hybrid solution. For example, the new Life Craft System ensures a whole new level. A specially designed chute system helps evacuees with special needs, such as children, the elderly and people on stretchers.
The system also takes up less space than lifeboats, freeing deck space for companies that are eager to provide their passengers with several cabins, shopping and other travel improvements.

Source: Viking Life - Saving Equipment/Maritime Denmark



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