The Netherlands: Dockwise Wins KVNR Shipping Award

The Netherlands - Dockwise Wins KVNR Shipping Award

Dockwise has won The Royal Association of Dutch Shipowners’ KVNR Shipping Award for its bowless heavy-cargo ship Dockwise Vanguard.

Heavy transport expert Dockwise in cooperation with consulting and engineering company Deltamarin have designed a unique semi-submersible vessel without conventional bow and with the accommodation in its entirety on the starboard side. The deck space of the vessel equals the main dimensions of the ship.

The Royal Association of Dutch Shipowners (KVNR) introduced the KVNR Shipping Award in 2008. Through this award, the KVNR wants to show that the maritime industry is a great industry, in which innovations occur, but also that the environment and corporate responsibility (including items such as the wellbeing of the crew) are high on the agenda. The price aims to heighten awareness of these issues and encourage shipping companies to utilize the knowledge of the shipping sector.

Dockwise had realized that offshore exploration and production platforms and FPSO’s (Floating Production, Storage and Offloading) were increasing in size. At the same time they could see an increasing demand for such structures to be transported in their entirety, due to the relocation of the oil industry towards deeper water and more remote areas. Mr. Michel Seij, Manager Engineering at Dockwise says: “To support this process, we investigated whether our ships were able to transport such cargoes. Our conclusion was that they had insufficient capacity and inadequate deck-area. The bow and the accommodations are usually in the way. The bowless design of the Dockwise Vanguard is the logical consequence of this.”

Dockwise brought their commercial analysis and knowledge of the market to Deltamarin and as a joint effort the novel concept was created. One of the main problems for the design was the current regulations. The regulations e.g. require bow and a certain freeboard. Deltamarin and Dockwise worked in collaboration with MARIN, Det Norske Veritas and the Dutch Inspectorate for Transport, Public Works and Water Management to get the required exemptions to the rules. Another area that needed special attention during the design process, was the distribution of safety zones. Normally both port- and starboard-rescue stations are required. Because of the longitudinally placed accommodation, this was adapted to front and aft zones in the accommodation, which can be seen in the position of the davit-launched lifeboats.

The Dockwise Vanguard will be 275 meters long and 70 meters wide. Over a length of 170 meters the ship provides space for sideways overhang of cargoes. Both the deck and the keel are double, with steel thicknesses of 45 mm, allowing the vessel to carry extreme loads till 110,000 tons. Deltamarin and Dockwise worked on the concept during 2011. The ship is being built in Korea and is expected to enter service in the fourth quarter of 2012. Construction costs amount to 240 million dollars.

Mr. Tineke Netelenbos, chairman of the KNVR Shipping Award said about the vessel: “Dockwise has thus a true technological innovation. The first and only. No other vessel is designed like this.”

Deltamarin said it was proud to have participated in the process and congratulated Dockwise on their road to innovations.

World Maritime News Staff, December 8, 2011; Image: Dockwise