Back to blogging after a long layoff (and a lot of guilt for not maintaining fresh material). With a view to keeping content 'fresh' for the next year or so, I'm blogging the birth of our first Capesize bulk carrier. The Antipodean Mariner's company went to the shipbuilding markets in late 2009 as the first glimmers of post-GFC recover were flickering. The container ship market was in complete meltdown, with ships being cancelled or deferred left, right and centre. Our requirement was for a series of Capesize bulkers for deployment in our iron ore and coal trades, and the 205,000 DWT NewcastleMax were assessed as best in class.
Developed by the Japanese yards for the domestic steel mills, these vessel can be regularly tracked alternating between the west and east Coast of Australia with iron ore and coking coal. The Yard which won the business had held a healthy order book of mega-container ships up until the 2009 crash. With the collapse of the financial structures behind these vessels, the cupboard was suddenly bare. The Yard turned to bulk carriers to maintain production at its facility and employment for its workforce.
The vessels will be 300m LOA by 50m beam and 18.4m summer draft. Electronically-controlled slow-speed diesel main engines have been specified for best performance under MARPOL Tier II regulations. The technical team managing the design process are incorporating features to make the vessels productive, easy to operate and a nice place to live and work.
Steel cutting for the first vessel, PN065, was in February and her progress will be reported regulary in this blog. PN065 is the first of eight identical vessels which will be built in a single dock. The first two will be laid down at the front of the dock and built side-by-side, with the second pair immediately behind them. As each pair are floated out, the pair behind will be floated forward and the next two
started. Sea trials and deliveries commence in 2011.
More to follow...
And by the way, I bought another bike for touring. The Street Triple is a hot 'point and shoot' but is a lonely trip without my pillion buddy.
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