Thyssenkrupp Eyes German Shipyard Industry Consolidation 

BERLIN, May 14 (Reuters) – Germany’s second-largest defence group Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) TKAG.DE wants to play a leading role in consolidating the German and European shipyard industry, its new Chief Executiv…

BERLIN, May 14 (Reuters) – Germany’s second-largest defence group Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) TKAG.DE wants to play a leading role in consolidating the German and European shipyard industry, its new Chief Executive Officer told...

Edison Chouest to build plug-in SOV for Empire Wind

(BROOKLYN, N.Y.) — Empire Offshore Wind, a joint venture between Equinor and BP, has awarded a long-term service operations vessel charter agreement to U.S. marine transportation provider Edison Chouest Offshore […]

(BROOKLYN, N.Y.) — Empire Offshore Wind, a joint venture between Equinor and BP, has awarded a long-term service operations vessel charter agreement to U.S. marine transportation provider Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO).

The plug-in hybrid service operations vessel (SOV) will be the first in the U.S. offshore wind sector capable of sailing partly on battery power.

The vessel will accommodate up to 60 wind turbine technicians and will be utilized for the safe and efficient operations and maintenance of the Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2 offshore wind farms. The charter agreement has a fixed period of 10 years, with commencement in the mid-2020s.

Empire Wind rendering

The U.S.-flagged vessel will be Jones Act compliant and have its home port at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal (SBMT) in New York. The SOV will be constructed with components from ECO’s extensive supplier base across 34 U.S. states.

The supplier estimates that this will generate over 250 high-skilled U.S. jobs during vessel construction. Edison Chouest Offshore is also dedicating considerable effort and resources to recruiting and training vessel crew from the New York region. ECO will operate the vessel from its New York office.

The plug-in hybrid vessel will be the first in the U.S. capable of sailing on battery power for portions of the route. The SOV will sail into the port of SBMT on battery power, recharge the battery using shore power and sail out of New York Harbor. The hybrid vessel is certified to EPA Tier 4 emissions standards, reaching the highest standard for marine applications.

“Equinor and BP’s agreement with Edison Chouest will generate ripple effects throughout the supply chain, creating jobs in numerous states across the country,” said Teddy Muhlfelder, vice president, Empire Wind and Beacon Wind, Equinor.

“With the first-of-its-kind, plug-in hybrid service operations vessel, Empire Wind will reduce potential emissions from our operations in the New York City area. This is another critical step forward in the development of the offshore wind industry, while helping achieve critical state and federal climate goals,” said Muhlfelder.

“Edison Chouest Offshore will provide a state-of-the-art vessel fit for Empire Wind,” said Mette H. Ottoy, chief procurement officer, Equinor.

“We selected Edison Chouest in part for its extensive experience and expertise as a shipbuilder and we look forward to a collaboration beginning with construction and continuing through operations for the next decade or more. This is an important step in our efforts to develop a domestic supply chain in the U.S. for offshore wind,” said Ottoy.

About Empire Wind

Empire Wind is located 15 to 30 miles southeast of Long Island and spans 80,000 acres, with water depths of between approximately 75 and 135 feet. The lease was acquired in 2017. The project’s two phases, Empire Wind 1 and 2, have a total installed capacity of more than 2 gigawatts (816 plus 1,260 megawatts). The project will be a major contributor to meeting New York State’s ambitious clean energy and climate goals. When completed, Empire Wind 1 and 2 will power more than 1 million New York homes.

– Empire Wind

Alaska operator adds another All American tour boat

(BELLINGHAM, Wash.) — All American Marine (AAM) has delivered Skana, a 150-passenger hydrofoil-assisted catamaran for Major Marine Tours. This is the second vessel delivered to Major Marine Tours by All […]

(BELLINGHAM, Wash.) — All American Marine (AAM) has delivered Skana, a 150-passenger hydrofoil-assisted catamaran for Major Marine Tours. This is the second vessel delivered to Major Marine Tours by All American Marine in two years, and a sister ship to Spirit of Matushka, delivered in spring of 2021.

Skana will also operate out of Seward, Alaska, and will carry passengers on tours visiting Kenai Fjords National Park. This 87-by-32-foot Teknicraft aluminum catamaran is certified to U.S. Coast Guard Subchapter T.

The quad HamiltonJet waterjet vessel will add to Major Marine Tours’ fleet of glacier and wildlife cruise vessels in and around Kenai Fjords National Park. After the
commissioning of the first vessel, the company quickly realized the need for a second, identical vessel to keep up with its growing business and market demand.

All American Marine photo

The semi-displacement catamaran hull for this vessel was developed by Nic de Waal of Teknicraft Design in Auckland, New Zealand. The design integrates the signature Teknicraft symmetrical and asymmetrical combined hull shape, bow wave piercer, and innovative dynamic hydrofoil system. This advanced hull shape was custom designed using digital modeling and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis.

The hull design is complemented by Teknicraft’s signature integration of a wave piercer that is positioned between the catamaran sponsons to break up wave action and ensure reduced drag while enhancing passenger comfort. The vessel’s design offers a smooth ride and comfort as the hull provides a cushioned effect when encountering waves.

The vessel includes HamiltonJet AVX controls which boast features such as the use of an intuitive Mouseboat controller. For the operator, one of the most valuable features on this vessel is the excellent fuel economy. With an increased fuel capacity of 1,900 gallons, this vessel was upgraded to include a dynamic aluminum hydrofoil, enhancing its speed and efficiency. The propulsion package includes four HamiltonJet HM422 waterjets powered by four Scania DI16 082 engines rated at 788 hp at 2,100 rpm.

“All American Marine worked with us to refine our goals, build a second, proven vessel that met those goals, and then delivered. In fact, despite building two boats during the midst of a global pandemic, they delivered both boats on time and on budget. This new vessel with its capacity, comfort, and speed is revolutionizing the fleet for Major Marine Tours,” said Colby Lawrence, Major Marine Tours vice president. “Our customers truly enjoy the spacious and accessible deck spaces when viewing whales and glaciers, particularly the stadium bow viewing area.”

There two enclosed passenger cabins that include tables at every seat. All of the exterior seats are underneath canopies, including the open-air third deck. Interior amenities include Beurteaux seats and electrical outlets with USB plugs at every table. The entire main deck, including the bow, has wheelchair access, and the main deck cabin includes wheelchair-designated seating locations.

– All American Marine

Coast Guard commissions 48th fast response cutter

(ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.) — The U.S. Coast Guard commissioned the 48th Sentinel-class fast response cutter (FRC), Pablo Valent (WPC 1148), into service at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg on Wednesday. […]

(ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.) — The U.S. Coast Guard commissioned the 48th Sentinel-class fast response cutter (FRC), Pablo Valent (WPC 1148), into service at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg on Wednesday.

Rear Adm. Brendan McPherson, commanding officer of the Coast Guard 7th District, presided over the ceremony. Cecilia Guillot, Valent’s great-niece, is the ship’s sponsor.

The cutter’s namesake Pablo Valent was originally from Corpus Christi, Texas, and joined the United States Life-Saving Service in 1912. In September 1919, Valent helped rescue the crew of the hurricane-damaged schooner Cape Horn off the coast of Texas. For his heroic efforts, Valent received the Silver Lifesaving Medal and the Grand Cross of the American Cross of Honor Society. Valent was one of the first Hispanic Americans to receive these honors.

Crewmembers of the Coast Guard cutter Pablo Valent man the ship during the commissioning ceremony Wednesday in St. Petersburg, Fla. U.S. Coast Guard photo

Valent, built by Bollinger Shipyards, is the 48th FRC and is the first to be home-ported in St. Petersburg with missions including search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, coastal security, and living marine resources. There are 12 other FRCs in Florida, which operate throughout the Caribbean Sea.

Each cutter is designed for a crew of 24, has a range of 2,500 miles and is equipped for patrols up to five days. The FRCs are part of the Coast Guard’s overall fleet modernization initiative.

FRCs feature advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment as well as over-the-horizon response boat deployment capability and improved habitability for the crew. The ships can reach speeds of 28 knots and are equipped to coordinate operations with partner agencies and long-range Coast Guard assets such as the Coast Guard’s national security cutters.

– U.S. Coast Guard

Keppel and Sembcorp Marine Reach Merger Deal, Creating Rig Building and Renewables Giant

By Kyunghee Park (Bloomberg) — Sembcorp Marine Ltd. has agreed to merge with Keppel Corp.’s subsidiary in a deal that will create the world’s biggest builder of oil rigs and push…

By Kyunghee Park (Bloomberg) — Sembcorp Marine Ltd. has agreed to merge with Keppel Corp.’s subsidiary in a deal that will create the world’s biggest builder of oil rigs and push...

Keppel and Sembcorp Shares Rally Ahead of Merger Deadline

By Ishika Mookerjee and Kyunghee Park (Bloomberg) — The deadline for a transformative deal between Keppel Corp. and Sembcorp Marine Ltd. is just days away.  Shares of both companies have surged…

By Ishika Mookerjee and Kyunghee Park (Bloomberg) — The deadline for a transformative deal between Keppel Corp. and Sembcorp Marine Ltd. is just days away.  Shares of both companies have surged...

Report to Congress on Navy Force Structure

The following is the April 20, 2022 Congressional Research Service report, Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress. From the report The current and planned size and composition of the Navy, the annual rate of Navy ship procurement, the prospective affordability of the Navy’s shipbuilding plans, and the capacity of the […]

The following is the April 20, 2022 Congressional Research Service report, Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress.

From the report

The current and planned size and composition of the Navy, the annual rate of Navy ship procurement, the prospective affordability of the Navy’s shipbuilding plans, and the capacity of the U.S. shipbuilding industry to execute the Navy’s shipbuilding plans have been oversight matters for the congressional defense committees for many years.

In December 2016, the Navy released a force-structure goal that calls for achieving and maintaining a fleet of 355 ships of certain types and numbers. The 355-ship goal was made U.S. policy by Section 1025 of the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 2810/P.L. 115-91 of December 12, 2017). The 355-ship goal predates the Trump and Biden Administrations’ national defense strategies and does not reflect the new fleet architecture (i.e., new mix of ships) that the Navy wants to shift toward in coming years. This new fleet architecture is to feature a smaller proportion of larger ships, a larger proportion of smaller ships, and a new third element of large unmanned vehicles (UVs). The Navy and the Department of Defense (DOD) have been working since 2019 to develop a successor for the 355-ship force-level goal that would reflect current national defense strategy and the new fleet architecture.

The Navy’s FY2023 30-year (FY2023-FY2052) shipbuilding plan, released on April 20, 2022, presents the results of three studies on possibilities for the Navy’s successor force-level goal. These studies call for a future Navy with 321 to 404 manned ships and 45 to 204 large UVs. A long-range Navy shipbuilding document that the Navy released on June 17, 2021, and which reflects some of these studies, outlined a future Navy that would include 321 to 372 manned ships and 77 to 140 large UVs. A September 2021 Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report estimated that such a fleet would cost an average of between $25.3 billion and $32.7 billion per year in constant FY2021 dollars in shipbuilding funds to procure.

The Navy’s proposed FY2023 budget requests $27.9 billion in shipbuilding funding for, among other things, the procurement of eight new ships, including two Virginia (SSN-774) class attack submarines, two Arleigh Burke (DDG-51) class destroyers, one Constellation (FFG-62) class frigate, one LPD-17 Flight II class amphibious ship, one John Lewis (TAO-205) class oiler, and one Navajo (TATS-6) class towing, salvage, and rescue ship. The Navy’s FY2023 budget submission shows a ninth ship—the amphibious assault ship LHA-9—as also being requested for procurement in FY2023. Consistent with both prior-year congressional authorization and appropriation action and Section 126 of the FY2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) (H.R. 6395/P.L. 116-283 of January 1, 2021), CRS reports on Navy shipbuilding programs, including this report, treat LHA-9 as a ship that Congress procured (i.e., authorized and provided procurement—not advance procurement [AP]—funding for) in FY2021. Navy officials have described the listing of LHA-9 in the Navy’s FY2023 budget submission as a ship being requested for procurement in FY2023 as an oversight. The Navy’s proposed FY2023 budget also proposes retiring 24 ships, including 9 relatively young Littoral Combat Ships (LCSs).

The FY2023 30-year (FY2023-FY2052) shipbuilding plan released on April 20, 2022, includes three potential 30-year shipbuilding profiles and resulting 30-year force-level projections, referred to as Alternatives 1, 2, and 3. Alternatives 1 and 2 assume no real (i.e., above-inflation) growth in shipbuilding funding beyond the level to be attained over the five-year period FY2023-FY2027, while Alternative 3 assumes some amount of real growth in shipbuilding funds after FY2027. Under Alternative 1, the Navy would reach 300 manned ships in FY2035 and grow to 316 manned ships by FY2052. Under Alternative 2, the Navy would reach 300 manned ships in FY2035 and grow to 327 manned ships by FY2052. Under Alternative 3, the Navy would reach 300 manned ships in FY2033 and grow to 367 manned ships by FY2052.

Download the document here.

Philly Shipyard Awarded Contract for Fifth and Final National Training Ship

Philly Shipyard, just three years after facing an uncertain future, is nearing full shipyard capacity as it announces an order for a fifth and final MARAD training ship. U.S. shipbuilder…

Philly Shipyard, just three years after facing an uncertain future, is nearing full shipyard capacity as it announces an order for a fifth and final MARAD training ship. U.S. shipbuilder...

Is Taiwan’s Evergreen Helping To Finance China’s Naval Expansion?

A new report says that commercial shipbuilding efforts by prominent companies – including Carnival Cruise Lines, CMA CGM, and Taiwan’s Evergreen Shipping – are helping China finance warships. By Michael…

A new report says that commercial shipbuilding efforts by prominent companies – including Carnival Cruise Lines, CMA CGM, and Taiwan’s Evergreen Shipping – are helping China finance warships. By Michael...

Panel: Pandemic Shortages Forced Pentagon to Focus on Supply Chain

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – The supply chain crisis exacerbated by the pandemic drove the Pentagon to focus new attention on its crucial but shrinking industrial base, Navy officials said Tuesday. Speaking at the 2022 Sea Air Space conference here, Karen Fenstermacher, executive for strategic initiatives, Naval Supply System Command, said COVID-19 showed the value of […]

Norman Bialk TIG welds an aluminum frame in the Hull Outfitting Shop. Newport News Shipbuilding

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – The supply chain crisis exacerbated by the pandemic drove the Pentagon to focus new attention on its crucial but shrinking industrial base, Navy officials said Tuesday.

Speaking at the 2022 Sea Air Space conference here, Karen Fenstermacher, executive for strategic initiatives, Naval Supply System Command, said COVID-19 showed the value of “whole-of-government approaches” to challenges ranging from supply to transportation. “One of the big challenges is aggregating demand” rather than stove-piping requests for specific items used by many agencies inside the Navy and across the government.

Kurt Wendelken, vice commander of Naval Supply Systems Command, said a key early concern in the pandemic “was mitigating repair lines going cold” as plants shut down for lack of parts and worker illnesses. He added later, “there’s a limited number of suppliers” after decades of defense industry consolidation among large contractors and small businesses closing down.

“The challenges our suppliers were facing,” the Navy learned “from daily conversations” with its 50 largest suppliers, included the need for personal protective equipment, difficulty commuting to and from work sites when public transportation systems shut down and their financial risk, Fenstermacher said.

She added that the Navy offered its own “transportation assets” to ensure needed parts, even from overseas, reached work sites.

The active involvement “proved very effective” in keeping manufacturing and repair lines open, she said.

Clark Dumont, senior director for global procurement, BAE Systems, said COVID-19 made industry closely examine “the depth of the supply chain,” including shipping availability and access to key components like semiconductors. This in-depth examination raised understanding in the private sector about “what risk elements are” and allowed companies like BAE to “put in place mitigation” to the anticipated challenges in availability of “trusted electronics.” Wendelken said pandemic challenges underlined the need for “One Navy voice” when dealing with industry. That translates into acquisition and sustainment working together “up front” with industry not just over the initial buy but what is needed to keep the system or platform performing in the future. He added because platforms are in service for decades “we’re fighting obsolescence on a daily basis.”

“The centerpiece of these conversations” inside the Navy and with industry “is obsolescence” downstream, Fenstermacher added.

“What’s the plan to care [for]this piece of equipment” if the manufacturer goes out of business or closes off production since the market is limited, Wendelken asked rhetorically. He added later, in answer to an audience question, that “small business is a key enabler,” including manufacturing that can close that gap.

But intellectual property rights pose a hurdle.

Panelists agreed that the intellectual property rights usually claimed by manufacturers in government contracts needed to be worked out for existing systems, like radar where the manufacturing line has been shut down, but it is still in service and in future systems and platform contract negotiations.

“It’s going to be a struggle,” Wendelken said, because the Pentagon will always have legacy systems in its systems but not necessarily spare parts in the service life of a platform like an aircraft carrier. Manufacturers “want to hold” onto those property rights. “If they don’t see the money, they’re going to walk away,” but “we’ve got to support that weapons system.”

BAE’s Dumont said, “we need innovation” and “small business can be essential” in building ecosystems to restore and build an American-made microelectronics industry. The ecosystem needs to include methodology “to ensure the pedigree of products” going into larger systems. He and others on the panel noted the pandemic underscored that need – starting with microchips, now largely coming from Taiwan, that were now longer reliably arriving at automobile plants in the United States.

The pandemic has also raised questions about the Pentagon’s long-held acquisition practice of awarding the contract to the lowest bidder, which could be a Chinese firm.

Fenstermacher said the “lowest bidder” policy “is creating more challenges,” because it does not take into account “the third and fourth or effects” in the award.