Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Halterm crane updates

Another change in the Halterm crane arrangement noted today.

The crane that had remained in the down position at pier 36 and was rarely used, was raised to the up position a couple of weeks ago and has now moved over to pier 41 - dwarfed by the four Super Post -Panamax cranes. The crane has movable bogies that allow it to negotiate curved track.

At left in this view is the oldest crane in Halterm, now moved from pier 36 to pier 41. Barely visible is the container ship Zim Monaco at pier 41-42, and not visible at all, Asian Sun arriving at pier 42 for Tropical Shipping.. 
The red building at the right is the Halterm truck entrance scanning shed.

One frame of the last of three cranes was being removed last Friday when the Nolhanava was in at pier 36. A large construction crawler crane with a white boom is seen securing the frame in the background.
Oceanex Sanderling was using pier 41, but sometimes has to wait if the berth is occupied.
Today however, Oceanex Sanderling was at pier 36.

With the demolition of the three old cranes at pier 37 now largely complete, there are other changes in the works.

The map on the left shows a new area added to Halterm's laydown area.
The map on the right,  printed before the recent crane demolition, did not list all the cranes in Halterm (it was one short). The tally now is four Super Post Panamax and the one from pier 36 which is pre-Panamax by the look of it.

The rumour persists that the Port Authority will fill in the camber between Piers A-1 and B to gain more ground area. I don't see this as a viable long term proposition since it will not gain the facility any berth space, That could only be achieved by extending Pier C (again).
It would lose the use of berths (piers) 36 and 37.  Granted berths 33 and 34 are rarely used by the port, (the bunkering tanker Algoma Dartmouth uses berth 34, but it could go elsewhere) but again that would be expensive laydown area without the ability to work more ships.

However if my proposal to move the Oceanex and St-Pierre traffic to Fairview were to be accepted, then perhaps there would be no need for berths 36 and 37.


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Sub to Sea

Submarines are notoriously hard to identify since they generally do not display pennant numbers. However it is easier for Halifax shipwatchers since the RCN only operates one sub on this coast - HMCS Windsor.

After spending some time in Bedford Basin doing warmups last week, Windsor put out to sea today, likely for a short trip as part of preparations for winter exercises.


Saturday, December 9, 2017

Harry DeWolf takes shape

After nearly six months the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ship Harry DeWolf finally has a bow. Two major mega blocks for the ship were rolled out and connected at Halifax Shipyard in July. Block #1, the icebreaking bow section, remained in the assembly hall until this past week when it was rolled out to the hardstand.

The sign says"Small Parts Laydown Area" - the ship's bow was one of three "mega blocks" which make up the ship - not exactly small parts.

This morning crews were carrying out final alignments. Using multi-wheeled motorized carriers from Fagioli Canada (partners with J.D.Irving)  the bow was sidled into place so that welding can begin.

The frst two mega blocks went together in far nicer weather in July.


Friday, December 8, 2017

Salarium - we will need it soon

The self-unloading bulk carrier Salarium made one of its infrequent visits to Halifax today. The Canada Steamships Lines ship is on long term charter to Mines Seleine to carry salt from the Magdelan Islands salt mine to various ports in the region. It has just delivered a load to Saint John, NB and will load gypsum in Halifax as a back haul to Montreal. It makes few empty trips, so is always looking for cargoes other than salt to keep it busy.

Salarium makes its way inbound passing the foot of Sackville St. My eye is only about 15 feet above sea level today, as opposed to yesterday's photo. I will make it to the waterfront eventually!

The ship was built by Collingwood Shipyard in 1980 as Nanticoke, a "Nova St.Lawrence" class ship, intended to trade the Great Lakes and east coast, carrying bulk cargoes such as ore, coal and grain. It was named for a Lake Ontario port, site of a large Ontario Hydro coal fired generating station and a steel plant.

In 2009 the ship was assigned to the salt trade and renamed, including a new funnel mark, which represents K+S Windsor Salt Ltd's Mines Seleine subsidiary.

We will soon be requiring road salt in Halifax in view of the weather forecast, and the occasional sight of flurries offshore.


Thursday, December 7, 2017

Comings and Goings

After a rough day yesterday caused several delays in arrivals and departures, conditions were serene today and normal sailings resumed.

HMCS Ville de Québec arrived early this afternoon in bright sunshine.
The frigate has been exercising in the Halifax harbour approaches.

Earlier in the morning the shuttle tanker Beothuk Spirit got underway for offshore Newfoundland to take up its duties, starting at the Hibernia oil field. It had been scheduled to sail yesterday, but its very high freeboard made disembarking a pilot too dangerous. The ships flies the Canadian flag and has a Canadian crew.

The ships passes Sackville Street, and its bridge is almost at eye level from my vantage point which was at the corner of Market Street, about 100 feet above sea level.


Before sailing: its massive full width bridge and bow loading structure dominate this image. The ship loads its cargo from offshore installations over the bow by special connection.

Note the markings for three thrusters and bulbous bow above the loaded waterline forward.(See previous post for more detail).


Sunday, December 3, 2017

First timers

Two ships arrived in Halifax for the first time, both under slightly unusual circumstances.
Friday night's arrival is the bulk carrier Federal Kushiro. The Marshal Islands flag ship is a frequent caller to Great Lakes ports, but has come to Halifax to top off its grain cargo since it cannot load to full capacity in the shallow waters of the Lakes.

The ship was built in2004 by Shin Kurushima, Onishi, Japan for Fednav the large Canadian shipping company operated from Montreal. It was built to near Seawaymax size with a 19,223 grt and 32,762 dwt. It carries three 30 tonne deck cranes.

It sailed onto the Lakes November 14, unloading a cargo in Hamilton, ON then proceeding to Johnstown, ON to take grain. However due to the ship's high freeboard it was difficult to get the grain to flow from that port's loading pipes. Coupled with the draft restrictions of the Seaway locks, the ship could only take a partial cargo. Topping off in Halifax should be no problem since the grain spouts are mounted high enough to reach very large ships. Rain cut short the loading operations for today however, and the ship was idle at Pier 28 this afternoon.

An unusual caller at Halterm was the Maersk Seletar. This is a US flagged ship, operating on Maersk's North Europe to east coast US service TA2 (with MSC) and is en route from New York back to Europe. The reason for its call was unclear to a casual observer, however it was noted that they were unloading reefer boxes. The demand for these in Halifax is fairly high for fish products and produce and that would be one reason for dropping off these particular containers. However the ship was working other cargo as well.

Also noted were the large number of Hamburg Süd containers, particularly aft. Maersk's takeover of Hamburg Süd cleared the final regulatory hurdle November 30 when South Korea was the 23rd jurisdiction to approve the deal (with some conditions). The arrangement now puts A.P. Moller Maersk's world-wide fleet at 773 ships (owned and chartered) including the 105 from HS. The company's container capacity is now a staggering 4.15 million TEU.

Maersk has a US subsidiary, which evolved from their takeover of Sealand Shipping a number of years ago. Maersk Line Ltd USA operates US flag ships, with US crews, but since the ships were not built in the US they are not Jones Act compliant. However since they are US owned and flagged they qualify to carry certain government and strategic cargoes that foreign carrier cannot. Maersk Seletar was built in 2007 by Hyundia Heavy Industries in Ulsan, South Korea for A.P.Moller Singapore Pte Ltd. It has a capacity of 6788 TEU, although Maersk lists a nominal capacity of 6648. (They are notoriously coy about actual ship capacity). It joined Maersk USA in June of this year.
Tonnages reported when built were 79,702 grt, 81,094 dwt, but now appear as 80,503 grt, 87,545 dwt.

Seletar is a district in Singapore, site of an early rubber plantation and a Royal Air Force Base. The latter is in development as an aerospace park.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

New to Halifax x 2

Halifax based Clearwater Seafoods will unveil its latest clam dragger December 21 at Pier 21. The boat arrived today and made a brief foray into Bedford Basin - no doubt to show off for the folks at Clearwater's HQ on the Bedford Highway.

The ship, named Anne Risley, is the second such ship in the fleet. Like the first, the Belle Carnell (both named for the founders' mothers) this is a conversion from a Norwegian platform supply vessel. Clearwater has had success with previous generations of clam dredgers converted from suppliers, but these two are much more sophisticated.

 The ship has been given an enclosed working area and additional superstructure over what was once the cargo deck.
  Built in 2010 by Severnaya Werf in St.Petersburg and completed by Hellesoyverft, in Lofallstrand, for OH Meling + Co AS as Siddis Supplier, the ship was converted by Astilleros Santander in Spain. It sailed from Santander November 15 and arrived at Mulgrave, NS (where it will be based) on November 25. Tonnage increased from 2656 as built to 4478 as converted.

The clam dredge is worked over a stern ramp.
 It is estimated that Clearwater spent in excess of $135mn on the two vessels, not including plant upgrades in Grand Bank, NL (where Belle Carnell is based) and in Glace Bay.
Last year Clearwater caught up to its quota of surf clams for the first time.

Also arriving today fresh from the builder's yard in Geoje, South Korea, the shuttle tanker Beothuk Spirit tied up at Pier 9C. It is the first of three new winterized shuttle tankers built for Teekay Shipping on a fifteen year contract to move oil from the four offshore installations off Newfoundland: Hibernia, Terra Nova, White Rose and Hebron. The latter began production last week.

Besides the large bow structure that contains the cargo transfer gear, the ship is fitted with three forward and two aft thrusters (two forward and one aft are azimuthing - the others are tunnel type) and is classed DP2 for extremely accurate station keeping. It used two tugs on arrival, escorting it to Bedford Basin, turning it and bringing it back alongside Pier 9C starboard side to.

The 85,762 grt, 148,150 dwt ship was delivered in mid-October and sailed directly October 24 via the Panama Canal. It will outfit in Halifax before entering service. The ship will be followed very soon by the Norse Spirt which was accepted November 8, also at the Samsung Heavy Industry Shipyard. The third tanker, Dorset Spirit will be completed early in 2018. All three were named at a ceremony August 25 to honour three early cultures of Newfoundland and Labrador and Canada's eastern arctic.
Sadly the Beothuk of Newfoundland became extinct due to permanent European settlement. The Dorset were an early people of the arctic, whose extinction occurred at about the same time as the Norse arrived in 1000 to 1500 AD. They were succeeded by Thule and Innu, with whom there was apparently little if any contact.

Teekay Shipping, based in Vancouver, operates 40% of the world's shuttle tankers, most of which have been built by Samsung. These specialized tankers load at sea from monobuoys at the well sites and make relatively short trips to storage facilities or nearby refineries. They do not make the long world girdling trips of normal crude tankers. They are therefore fitted with a lot of extra gear, such as the bow loading, and station keeping equipment.