Thursday, May 30, 2013

Aivik - arctic veteran retires

1. Aivik returning from the north last summer. Note the lighters and tugs on deck.

A veteran arctic supply ship arrived today in Halifax. After winter layup in Montreal, Aivik has been sold and and its Canadian register closed as of today.
Built in 1980 by Soc. Nouvelle des Ateliers du Havre, France, it is an ice class, heavy lift RoRo - an interesting combination. Its main feature is two large cranes with a combined lifting capacity of 310 tonnes, it also has a stern ramp and large open car deck. Its weather has flush hatches so that is can carry containers (168 TEU) and oversize cargoes. Its gross tonnage is 7,048.
When built it was named M,ont Ventoux and served several French companies until acquired by The North West Company of Winnipeg in 1990, with managers Igloolik Transport Inc (part of the Logistec Group).
It was renamed Aivik (walrus) and has been a regular in the arctic ever since. For a number of years it was flagged out in winter and traded internationally. In 1991 it was renamed Unilifter under the French flag again, but returned to Canada in 1992.
Since then, and with the formation of Nunavut and Nunavik, a new company Nunavut Eastern Arctic Shipping was formed to own the ship, and acquire more ships for arctic supply work. The current fleet of four ships (including Aivik's replacement) have none of the versatility of Aivik, but are better suited to the needs of NEAS. See:
Aivik has made "side trips" besides its northern work. Due to its heavy lift capacity it has carried transformers for Hydro Quebec. On one previois trip to Halifax, it arrived November 29, 1990 carrying the new engines and auxiliaries for CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent.
2. Aivik brought new engines for CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent in 1990.

During her normal summer supply work, the ship carries tugs and lighters on deck to service remote communities without piers. In its off season work it carried containers and RoRo cargo.
3. Anchored in Halifax in early 1991, the ship had a deck load of frozen containers.

According to the NEAS website, the replacement for Aivik will be called Mitiq (common eider) but as yet I have been unable to identify the ship. However it is likely to be an ex Spleithoff's vessel, similar to the three others ships in the fleet.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

FGS Planet -SWATH has Nova Scotia roots

 The arrival on May 25 of FGS Planet, a German naval research vessel -so far un-photographed by Shipfax, is one of only a few calls in Halifax of SWATH (Small Waterplane Twin Hull) craft. However one of the first was based here, and the inventor of the technology itself was a Nova Scotian. 
The principal of the SWATH craft was first developed and patented in the 1930s, but it was not until the 1960a that a full size SWATH vessel was built. A native of Mill Village, NS, one Frederick G. Creed was prolific inventor, who revolutionized telegraphy, and late in life tuned his mind to more efficient was of moving boats through water, with speed. The principal that narrow hulls go faster has long been known, but since narrow hulls require stabilization, outriggers (see South Pacific canoes) were necessary. Creed perfected this idea by using twin hulls that appear to float above the water, but which are connected by narrow fin sections to torpedo like  submerged hulls. With minimal resistance at the sea surface they can be very fast and very stable.
In 1988 The Canadian government signed a lease purchase agreement with Swath Systems Inc of the US to develop a SWATH survey vessel for the Canadian Hydrographic Service. The 62 foot long vessel was built by Swath Ocean Systems Inc in San Diego and christened Frederick G. Creed. Based initially at the BIO in Halifax, it proved itself and ownership was transferred to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans in 1989.
1. The twin hulls of the SWATH give the ship great stability.
 2. Frederick G. Creed was at first painted in the white colours of the Canadian Hydrographic Service. They didn't paint the funnels buff however. The gigantic aerial is part of a sophisticated positioning and data system.

CCGS Frederick G. Creed is now based in Rimouski., QC and works out of the Maurice Lamontagne Institute in Mont-Joli , making the occasional trip to Halifax.With 2,084 bhp it is capable of 26 knots.
Interestingly the DFO has never built another SWATH.
3. Like maples in autumn, the Creed turned red, when it adopted CCG colours.

For more on Frederick G. Creed, the man see:

See Halifax Shipping News for a photo of FGS Planet:

To see the technology taken an impressive step further, see the America's Cup racer:

Atlantic Superior - no cruise

Atlantic Superior did not return to Montreal with its load of gypsum, but instead went to Baltimore - almost repeating its maiden voyage. It will not carry on to the west coast however, but will put in a few trips for sister company CSL International. It will likely return with coal for the Strait of Canso and may take a few more bites out of the mountain of gypsum in Dartmouth. Its layup and retirement are therefore put off for a while.
It is not true that it will fill in for Grandeur of Seas on a few trips to the Bahamas. That ship, based in Baltimore, had a fire on its after deck in the area of its mooring winches en route to Coco Cay, Bahamas on May 27. It was re-directed to Freeport, where the passengers were disembarked, and where it will remain for repairs. All sailings until July 12 are cancelled. While Atlantic Superior might be a fun replacement for die hard ship enthusiasts, the more sophisticated cruise customer might be disappointed with some of the  amenities.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Grand Benelux - second replacement

1. A lobster fisherman attends to his traps off Black Rock Beach as Grand Benelux approaches the Middle Ground between Meagher's Beach and Ives Knoll.
Part 2 of the Atlantic Cartier replacement arrived this  morning, but at Autoport. Grand Benelux is owned by ACL, but operates in the colours of the the parent company Grimaldi Group and is registered in Italy.

2. Grimaldi Group of Italy is the parent company of Atlantic Container Line. They also operate the bright yellow ships of Grimaldi Lines.

Built in 2001 by the Uljani shipyard in Pula, Crotia, is is credited with the ability to carry 4,600 cars. These would be very small cars however, since the ship only measures 37,712 gross tons. It also has the unusual feature of six passenger cabins, with two berths each. These are for the use of drivers accompanying their vehicles (usually trucks) on the ship's normal intra-European sailings. As its names imply these would connect Belgium/Netherlands/Luxembourg with the Mediterranean.
As a pure truck and car carrier, it has no container capacity, and therefore balances yesterday's caller CSAV Rungue which could carry no vehicles. Both ships are dealing with the backlog created when Atlantic Cartier caught fire May 1.


Sunday, May 26, 2013

CSAV Rungue - first replacement

Atlantic Container Line brought CSAV Rungue to Halifax today as part of their efforts to replace Atlantic Cartier after the serious fire in Hamburg on May 1.
CSAV Rungue is a pure container ship, without RoRo capability, so it is only a stopgap to deal with a backlog that built up when the Cartier fire took that ship out of the normal ACL rotation of five ships.  The fire, which damaged 30 of the 70 cars aboard did structural damage to the ship which is still in Hamburg. Later reports indicate that firefighters had to order in more foam after exhausting local supplies. Longshoreman were able to remove containers containing uranium hexaflouride, ethanol and ammunition before the fire spread from the car deck area.
CSAV Rungue (Liberian flag) was built in 2008 as Priomavera by Thyssen Nordseewerke in Emden, Germany and is owned by Maritime GmbH in Elsfleth. It has a container capacity of 3,476 TEU on 36,087 gross tons and 42,594 deadweight. The initials "CSAV" in its name stand for Compagnia Sud Americana de Vapores. They  have the ship on charter, but are reconfiguring several lines, and had the ship available.
Next month another ship, Grande Angola, a ConRo from Grimaldi Group (parent of ACL), will be here for ACL.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Atlantic Superior- last gasp

1. Atlantic Superior arriving for perhaps the last time in Halifax.

Reports seem to agree that the self-unloading bulk carrier Atlantic Superior is on her last trip.She made her way down the Lakes to Belledune, NB with a load of coal and has come on to Halifax for gypsum, arriving very on a very foggy Saturday May 25. When she unloads that cargo in Montreal she is to go into long term layup pending sale for scrap.

The ship has had a long term relationship with Halifax, going back to her first year in service.
A product of Collingwood Shipbuilding, in Collingwood, ON, she took to the water for the first time in phases. The stern was launched on November 9, 1981 and the bow in May 1982. The sections were then towed to Thunder Bay where they were joined together by Portship, a sister yard in what was then Canadian Shipbuilding + Marine Engineering Ltd. By June 25, 1982 the ship was ready for service with Canada Steamship Lines (then the parent company of CSB+E). She loaded grain and sailed for Halifax on her maiden voyage.
2. Atlantic Superior arrived in Halifax for the first time July 15, 1982 with a cargo of grain. There was no facility for self-unloading in those days, and it took three days to unload using the grain leg. 

CSL had decided to expand its scope, and this was their first ship to be suitable for unrestricted ocean trading. CSL had developed the self-unloader technology to a high degree and could see a demand off Lakes. The ship's name, which became the first in a series, connected the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean.
In her first season she brought grain to Halifax then backhauled gypsum and iron ore for the rest of the summer. Come winter she headed south and loaded salt in Baltimore for Longview, WA, returning with potash.
In 1985 she was sent to Europe with a load of iron ore from Sept-Iles, then went to work carrying coal from England and the Netherlands to a new power plant in Sines, Portugal. She was re-flagged to the Bahamas for this overseas work, but returned to Canadian flag briefly and was registered in Halifax on November 10, 1986. She was back to Bahamas flag March 30, 1987 for more overseas work, which in 1988 included carrying stone for the Chunnel project.
 3. Her first port of registry of Collingwood was outlined with weld bead, but was painted out when she went to the Bahamas. When she came back to Canada a more modest Halifax appeared.

She ranged far and wide over the next few years, working in the Pacific between Mexico and British Columbia carrying gypsum, stone, fertilizer and coal.
4. Returning to Halifax on March 21, 1997 for renaming.

5. Her name had already been painted out on the stern in preparation for her new name, and Nassau remained as port of registry.

On March 22, 1997 she was renamed M.H.Baker III in Halifax for contracting to National Gypsum, running out of Dartmouth to ports from Newington, NH to Tampa, FL.
6. Ballasted down by the bow for repairs to her steering nozzle, M.H.Baker III was bunkering from fellow Collingwood-built Imperial Dartmouth.

In 2002 she went to the Far East and was refitted there, but returned to Nova Scotia in April 2003 loading stone in Auld's Cove for Newington, and was renamed Atlantic Superior.
She had a winter layup in Halifax January-February 2004, then continued in the gypsum, coal and ore trades in Canadian and US waters.
In January 2006 she arrived in Halifax, having suffered an engine failure. She transferred her cargo to fleet mate Atlantic Erie and drydocked. In February she was reflagged to the Bahamas again, until 2010. In May 2007 she delivered a cargo of coal to pier 9 for the Lafarge Cement plant in Brookfield. 
On May 3, 2010 she returned to Canadian flag and was registered in Montreal. By then she had adopted CSL's traditional red hull colour.(Self-unloaders had been black due to their usual cargoes of coal, and CSL International's ships were always black). In 2011 she spent most of her time shuttling iron ore from Pointe-Noire, QC out to larger bulk carriers anchored in Sept-Iles Bay.
7. The ship's last drydocking was in Halifax in January-February 2012.

8. The ship looked pretty good when she resumed service in the spring of 2012.

On Jan, 20, 2012 she arrived in Halifax for drydocking and repainting, leaving port February 22.
She returned On December 29 and spent the winter at pier 25-26 where her unloading boom was reconditioned, but she received very little other attention as far as could be seen from the outside. She returned to service March 19, and has been running the Sept-Iles./Great Lakes.
9. A brief blast of weak sun greeted the ship as it passed up the Narrows this afternoon with the tug Atlantic Willow alongside.

With brand new self-unloaders on their way to Canada from China, CSL seems to have enough ships to handle present work without Atlantic Superior. The first new Chinese built self-unloader Baie St-Paul was delivered last fall, Whitefish Bay sailed form China May 17 and Thunder Bay was registered in Montreal May 16, and started sea trials in China.

Atlantic Superior certainly earned her keep over her 31 years, and it is probably time to go.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Lady Melissa at Bishop's Landing

The herring seiner Lady Melissa tied up at Bishop's Landing near the Acadian Memorial. The stone monument was set there in 2005 to mark the 250th anniversary of the Grand Dérangement which saw the deportation of thousands of French settlers from Nova Scotia by the British government. More than 2,000 Acadians were imprisoned on nearby George's Island over a ten year period.
Some Acadians made their way back to Nova Scotia, and re-settled on the southwest shore, where their descendants maintain a lively francophone culture today.
Lady Melissa is owned by Comeau's Sea Foods Ltd of Saulnierville, NS, in the heart of "the French Shore". It also wears the flag of Acadia on its bows, wheelhouse and crowsnest..
Built in 1980 by Ferguson Industries Ltd in Pictou it is the largest of many herring seiners that move around the coast yearly seeking the sometimes elusive fish. Last year there were virtually none, but there are hopes that they might make a catch this year.
On the right side of the photo is one of the "drunken lamposts", part of an art installation. It will be removed in the fall and is not a permanent fixture on the waterfront.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

WG Magellan - starts deployment

1. WG Coook and WG Magellan at pier 28, last evening, preparing to go to sea.WG Magellan has her paravanes rigged and ready to deploy.

The first of the seismic boats to leave Halifax, WG Magellan sailed this evening in company with the two Canadian ships Strait Explorer and Strait Signet. WG Cook attempted to leave, but cancelled.
Riverton, Ocean Odyssey and Geco Tau so far remain in port.

2. Strait Signet at the government wharf in Port Hawksbury last April.

Strait Signet has an interesting history. Built by Saint John Shipbuilding + Dry Dock Ltd (hull number 1089) in 1967,  she was originally a fishing trawler, named Scotia Port. One of four boats built for Superior Sea Products in Yarmouth, only one remains as a fishing boat.
Scotia Point was renamed Senator Don in 1982 and Tenacity I in 1986. It is owned by Clearwater.
Scotia Bay and Scotia Cape were sold to the west coast. Bay went first in 1976 and was lost in 1979. The same owners then bought Cape and it was lost without trace, taking the owners with in it 1998.
Scotia Port took an entirely different course, and was sold to Raytheon in Newport, RI. They rebuilt her as the research vessel Sub Sig II. It returned to Canada in 2002 when Superport Marine Marine Services bought her and she became Strait Signet and was further modifiedfor their use.

3. Strait Explorer fitting out at Siuperport's yard, last April.

Strait Explorer is also a former fishing vessel. Built in 1982 by Dorbyl Marine (Pty) Ltd in Durban, South Africa, is was Fisheries Products Ltd's Pennysmart until Superport rebuilt it for research work.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Yantian Express, G-6 early bird

Yantian Express, the largest container ship ever to call at Fairview Cove arrived this morning. At 7506 TEU, it is about 800 TEU larger than the largest post-Panamax ships that have been calling here. As an inaugural call of sorts, the ship took two pilots and made heavy use of its escort tug to slow the ship as it passed into Bedford Basin.
Assigned to the new G-6 Alliance service, the ship is ahead of the scheduled start of the service in June. That Asia-US+Canada east coast A2X loop began today, but in Laem Chabang, Thailand when OOCL Oakland sailed. It will be followed in the rotation by APL Blegium, Canada Express, APL Pearl, Yantain Express, APL Agate, Ningbo Express, APL Coral, Dalian Express and APL Cyprene. Most of the ships will be new to Halifax, and all are post-Panamax size, but not all as large as this one.
Yantian Express was built in 2002 by Hyundai, Ulsan. Although launched as Berlin Express, it entered service as Shanghai Express, and took its present name in 2012. At 88,493 gross tons and 100,003 deadweight it is 20 meters longer, two meters wider, and nearly 15,000 tonnes deadweight larger than the post-Panamaxes we have been seeing up until now.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Pier 6 the next stage

Reconfiguration of Halifax Shipyards is moving right along. Now that work has been completed on the removal of pier 6 deck structure  and the dredging has been largely completed, all the soil cleaning equipment and debris have been removed from the site.

Also the old Burning Shop, the northernmost building, has been gutted ready for demolition, and work has started on a workers' parking garage at the south end of the site.
It will soon be time to start work on the the new pier face cribs, and an ad in Saturday May 18's paper hints at the likely contractor. Dexter Construction the heavy civil part of the Municipal Group is hiring marine and construction personnel including those with slipform experience.
Interestingly (see Tugfax) McNally Construction, the company that built the slip formed cribs for pier 9c have demobilised from Halifax and have towed away most of their gear, so it certainly won't be them. They were keeping the gear here in case they got the shipyard job. Dexter has little if any floating plant of their own, so they will have to rent or find the scows and tugs for the work.
Dexter built a good portion of the new cradle at Irving's Shelburne Marine Shipyard, and in that job hired gear from Dominion Diving.
 There have been many changes at Halifax Shipyard over the years, but little changed form the time the new pier 6 was built in the 1960s until Irving Shipbuilding took over. The photo above shows what it looked like before 1960. Note that pier 9 had not been built by them either. I won't begin to comment on water pollution back then. Compare to the top photo in this post.!

    Saturday, May 18, 2013

    Siesmic Invasion

    The seismic invasion of Halifax is at its height with two more boats arriving this morning and three more later., joining the two that are already here. There will be a mass exodus on Tuesday as they leave for the licensed research area, and will be joined by an eight vessel. They will start actual work around May 25.

    Today's arrivals mark the first X-bow ships to call in Halifax. The patented hull form is said to be better at sea keeping and more fuel efficient than conventional ship's bows, and dozens of X-bow type ships have been built for offshore supply and seismic work, since it was developed. The X-bow form is patented and the name is a registered trade mark of the Ulstein group, who developed the original, but others have built similar concepts, so the type is now generally referred to as an "inverted bow" since the most forward part of the ship's bow is at the waterline.The first ship with an X or axe bow was built in 2006 for Bourbon Offshore.

    As previously reported here, Ocean Odyssey and Riverton are already in port.[see also Tugfax]
    First arrival this morning was Geco Tau owned by Volstad Offshore AS of Aalesund, Norway. Built in 1982 by Sovikens, it has been on charter to WesternGeco since 2004, but worked for the predecessor Geco since it was built.
    It has the appearance of a conventional seismic research ship, with large covered deck area, for cable stowing. As a takeup vessel its streamers will be about 2 km long.

    Next in was the novel X-bow WG Magellan. Built in 2009 in Vigo, Spain by Barreras,  it measures 6922 gross tons. As one of the prime vessels in the exploration, it can tow 12 streamers up to 10 km long.The ship is one of six Ulstein SX124 class designs built for WesternGeco ( two in Spain).
    Thanks to the odd bow shape, there are extending docking wings similar to those found on cruise ships. Surprisingly for a ship fitted with all sorts of thrusters, it took tugs to tie up at pier 27.

    Expected later today, its sister WG Cook dates from 2010 and was built by Drydocks World in Dubai.It measures 6599 gross tons.It was the fourth Ulstein SX124 designed boats delivered by the same shipyard and last of six  of the class for WesternGeco.

    Also due are two ships from Superport Marine in Port Hawskbury. Strait Explorer and Strait Cygnet Signet will also be participating in the project.

    The standby vessel Atlantic Tern (ex Atlantic Birch II) will be joining the team, but will not be coming in to Halifax.

    Aqua Azul en route to new home

    The dinner cruise boat Aqua Azul arrived in the wee hours of this morning en route to its new home in New York.
    Built in 2002 by Keith Marine Inc of Palatka FL as Sir Winston, it has operated from Chicago since 2005 doing dinner cruises on Lake Michigan.On May 19, 2005, carrying the name Kanan, it was upbound in the St.Lawrence Seaway, bound for Chicago. It is licensed for 400 passengers and 20 crew.
    New owners from New York bought the ship this spring to replace a boat lost in Hurricane Sandy last year. The long trip from Chicago started in late April and has been taken in stages, tying up for various periods of high winds and bad weather.
    Its last stop was in Port Hawksbury, May 16. See the Strait Area blog for a better photo.
    New owners are listed as Star of America Charters LLC of Port Washington, NY. The Port of Halifax website shows the representative agent for the ship as Manhattan Steamboat LLC:

    Friday, May 17, 2013

    Atlantic Pilot - visiting pilot boat

    The Atlantic Pilotage Authority wharf had a visiting pilot boat today. Atlantic Pilot is one of a pair of pilot boats built for Placentia Bay, by A.F. Theriault in 2007 to a Camarc design. It was here before in November 2007 for trials.

    Avalon Pilot was built first, and delivered in May 2007 and Atlantic Pilot was delivered in October of 2007. Both also worked in Saint John, NB for a time before taking up station in Placentia Bay. The bay is a busy pilotage area, with the Whiffen Head terminal, Come-by-Chance refinery and Kiewit shipyards at Marystown and Cow Head. Much of the traffic is tankers with several arrivals and departures daily.
    The boats are slightly larger than the Halifax boats because they must withstand harsher conditions, and they are capable of greater speed because of the great distances they have to travel. With two Caterpillar engines of 925 bhp each they can hit 23 knots.


    Bahri Abha - brand new for Saudis

    The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia, now trading under the name Bahri, brought in the first of its new ConRos today, and a spectacular ship it is.
    Designed by Knud E. Hansen and built by Hyundai MipoDockyard in Ulsan, South Korea, the 50,714 gross ton ship is a bit of departure for NSCSA. Their previous 1982-83 era ConRos had a container capacity of 2310 TEU whereas the new ships carry only 364 TEU. RoRo capacity has been increased considerably to 24,000 m2 reflecting the realities of trade with Saudi. Halifax cargo usually involves fleets of military LAVs, and US loaded cargo involves lots of cars and SUVs. The new ships carry two 240  tonne heavy lift cranes for project cargoes,(the previous ships were gearless), and are painted blue, replacing the previous green, as part of the re-branding to Bahri. Dimensions are :220m x 32.3m x 9.5 m max draft. Deadweight is 26,000 tonnes.

    The first ship, Bahri Abha, replaces Saudi Abha which last called here December 10, 2012 and has now been sent to the scrappers in Alang, India. Bahri Abha was handed over by Hyundai in January, and after a lengthy trials trip it was accepted February 5. Among the new features is a clean burning Wartsila slow speed Tier II compliant main engine and efficient integrated flap type rudder and propeller.
     The Danish designers, Knud E. Hansen, have designed many fine looking ships over the years, specializing in ferries, among them the Canadian Caribou and Joseph and Clara Smallwood of blessed memory.
    Three more new Bahris will be delivered during the next 12 months.
    The ships have an ambitious multi-stop rotation beginning in Baltimore (import), Houston, Jacksonville, Savannah, Charleston, Wilmington NC, Baltimore (export), New York, Halifax, then via the Med to Jeddah (eastbound), Jebel Ali, Dammam, Mesaieed, Mumbai, Mudrah, Jeddah (westbound), Livorno.


    Louis-Jolliet aground near Quebec City and a ferry tale

    The veteran cruise boat and former ferry Louis Jolliet ran aground on the western tip of Ile d'Orléans this afternoon while heading for the Ste-Anne-de-Beaupré  Montmorency Falls area. All 57 passengers aboard, consisting mostly of students, and 20 crew evacuated safely to the two Quebec City pilot boats, Océan Express, and Océan Guide. Film footage shows the ship heeled over on her starboard bilge and high and almost dry. See:

    Owners Croisières AML, with Groupe Océan tugs, apparently refloated the ship at high tide, since she now appears to be back at her dock. There were no reported leaks - inward or outward- so damage may have been minimal.

    Built by nearby Davie Shipbuilding (now Chantier Davie Canada Inc)at Lauzon, QC in 1938 [that's in in the background of the photo] , it served up to the 1970s as a Québec-Lévis summer ferry. Its airy car and passenger decks contrasted sharply with the fully enclosed goose egg shaped winter ferries.It was powered by a 950 ihp steam engine built by the picturesquely named Canadian General Shoe + Machinery Co. The engine was built in 1910 and salvaged from another ship.
    That engine served until it was converted to diesel by AML when it was reconfigured as a tour boat. Regrettably AML felt it necessary to add a false funnel and other excrescences that diminished the ship's charm in direct proportion to increases in its passenger capacity. The delightful bridge wing teahouses have been overwhelmed by a lounge, and a ghastly midship tent adds frosting to an already indigestable cake. Maybe you've concluded that I disapprove. I hate to show this photo:

    I took many enjoyable rides on the older version, and although it is good to keep old ships going, this one has gone to far with the modernization.

    Meanwhile back at the Chantier Davie ranch, it was announced today that the yard has finally signed the deal with Société des Traversiers de Québec to build two new ferries for the Tadoussac to Baie-Ste-Catherine service. The ships were awarded to the yard when it was in bankruptcy protection, trying to re-organize and bid on the NSPS contract.The new boats, reported to cost $125 mn will be 92m long, carry 115 vehicles and will be powered by Wartsila dual fuel engines, burning diesel or LNG. Since there is no LNG within 150 land miles of Tadoussac, any cost saving will be lost by having to truck the fuel to the ships or send the ferries across to Cacouna to fuel up. Silly, silly.

    Thursday, May 16, 2013

    AST Sunshine brings clearing weather

    1. The gloom is lifting, allowing a clear view of the boldy painted ship as it unloads at Imperial Oil.

    Living up to its name AST Sunshine brought clearing weather when it arrived today. The ship had been anchored off Halifax Since May 5. A cynic would say it was waiting for the price of oil to go up, but it certainly was a long time.
    The splendidly painted ship is nearly new, having entered service January 10 of this year.It came from the Samsung Shipbuilding and Heavy Industry yard in Geoje, South Korea and is 50% owned by Solar Shipping + Trading SA and 50% by Asahi Marine of Tokyo. Management of the ship is in the hands of Northern Marine Management of Clydebank, Scotland. Despite all that the ship is registered in Panama.
    It is obviously operating under charter to Stena-Sonanagol, a 26 ship pool of  Suezmax tankers operated by Stena Sphere shipping of Sweden and Sonangol, the state owned oil company of Angola. Most of the ships were built in the last two or three years, and are roughly identical in size. AST Sunshine is typical, at 81,187 gross tons and 159,000 tonnes deadweight.

    Veendam takes the fog away

    On its first arrival this season Veendam emerged from the fog, and today on its second arrival it left just as the rain had stopped and the fog was lifting.
    The ship is on the return leg of its St.Lawrence River / Eastern Canada cruise (one week each way) and has not always had the best weather for it. Yesterday's stop in Sydney, NS was cancelled due to high winds in the Cabot Strait area. I am not sure what the ship did with the time, but it remained at sea until is put in this morning.
    I had a chance to get a better look at the ship's uninspired new stern ducktail and "rumble seat" cabins. They would be the last place I would want to be in high seas.


    Monday, May 13, 2013

    SCF Neva and OOCL Hong Kong

    The Russian flag tanker SCF Neva arrived at inner anchorage. The ship will be moving to Imperial Oil at some point. As with all Russian flag ships, the name appears in Cyrillic characters on the bow. Usually there is a bridge board with the name in Arabic letters.

    Despite the name in Russian the company logo and the "Safety Comes First" slogan on the house are in English. This may be because the ship flew the Liberian flag from the time it was built in 2006, until 2012. It flew the Cyprus flag for one day while transferring from Liberia to Russia.
    SCF stands for Sovcomflot, one of the large Russian shipping companies. A subsidiary, Unicom, manages the ships from Cyprus.
    The ship was built by STX Shipbuilding Co in Jinhae, South Korea, and measures 29,902 gross tons and 47,125 deadweight. It also features a full width bridge, indicating that it is intended for use in northern waters.

    OOCL Hong Kong also arrived, to the accompaniment of guitar music - spring must be here! The ship is a typical post-Panamax ship of 66,046 gross tons, built in 1995. It flies the dual flag of Hong Kong and China.


    Ocean Odssey

    The seismic research vessel Ocean Odyssey arrived at pier 27 this morning. Built on conventional supply vessel lines, it has an enclosed after deck and helicopter platform.
    Owned by Remoy Shipping of Fossnavaag, Norway it is registered with the Norwegian International Register.
    As with many European vessels, the hull was built in one location and the ship was finished in another. In this case the hull was built at the Aker Tuclea Shipyard in Romania, and completed at the Soviknes Werft AS in Sovik, Norway. The cost saving is apparently worth it, even including the cost of towing the ship all the way round from the Black Sea through the Mediterranean to Norway.
    Dating from 2005, the ship measures 3658 gross tons.
    The ship has been operating under charter to Western Geco, since built.


    Sunday, May 12, 2013

    ACL scrambles

    With the removal from service of Atlantic Cartier due to fire in Hamburg on May 2, ACL is maintaining its normal rotation - more or less (Atlantic Conveyor seems to be the odd ball)
    Atlantic Conveyor arrived in Halifax May 6 eastbound, so it seems to have slipped a week somewhere, since Atlantic Companion was only here on May 5 eastbound. Atlantic Concert was in on May 6, westbound.
    The normal rotation would have Atlantic Cartier arriving in Halifax on May 13 (sailing form Liverpool on May 7.)
    As of May12 the ship is still in Hamburg and no ACL ship is posted as due in Halifax for Cartier's slot. Containers can certainly be diverted to Hapag-Lloyd ships, but RoRo cargo would have to go to other lines. 
    Lloyd's List reported that ACL is seeking a replacement of the ship, but as mentioned before big ConRos are no longer easy to find.(See also recent post on scrapping of Wloclawek.)

    IT Intrepid - off again

    1. IT Intrepid sailing form Halifax in April.

    The cable ship IT Intrepid sailed Saturday night for  the Trinity Bay area of Newfoundland to make an emergency cable repair.
    The ship had been working with its ROV on the Deep Panuke field, but I think it was called off that work on Friday, to come back into Halifax and gear up for the Trinity Bay job.
    As a Barbados flag ship it would need a coasting license to work in Canadian waters. However as there are no Canadian flag cable ships to do the work I imagine that an accelerated licensing process will be used in an emergency situation.
    Unfortunately the Canadian Transportation Agency web site is down so I have no way of checking.