Commercial ships able to route through the Northwest Passage without ice breaker assistance are a step closer to becoming a reality. Korean shipbuilders, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), announced a few days ago that a model of their 190,000 dwt iron ore bulk carrier had finished its test program in the world’s largest – 90 meters long – ice test tank at Canada’s Institute for Ocean Technology (IOT). With an awareness that the traditional ice-breaker bow construction (where the mass of the ship’s bow structure bears down to break up pack ice) acts as a drag on efficient progress in open waters, international collaboration between IOT and Korean researchers from Pusan National University aimed at finding the optimal bow design for a ship operating in various ice conditions. Numerical computer analysis by the team culminated in manoeuvring and resistance performance tests of the model bulk carrier in the special ice-test tank.
Ship Model Testing in IOT Ice... [More]
Vale Brasil, the world’s largest ore-carrier, this week en route from the NE coast of Brazil on her maiden voyage to Darien, China, is loaded with 391,000 tons of iron-ore. A juggernaut seen by market analyst Erik Nikolai Stavseth, of Arctic Securities ASA in Oslo, as one of a breed of ‘sea monsters’ (more of the same are on order by Brazilian mining conglomerate Vale) that will change the way iron-ore flows to satisfy China’s enormous appetite for the commodity. Why build such gigantic iron-ore carriers, bearing in mind the design challenges? Simply in order to make Brazilian iron-ore competitive in price with the Australian delivery to the Chinese market, despite the commodity having to travel almost double the ocean distance; Vale Brasil offers lower freight costs gained through economy of scale.The good news is that this ship will be flexing green power muscles with a carbon footprint of 34% less per tonne of cargo carried than traditional Capesize vessels &... [More]