Cat propulsion package for shallow draft ice-breaking walk-to-work vessel

Shipyard Royal Niestern Sander has selected Pon Power to provide a diesel-electric propulsion package for the world’s first shallow draft ice-breaking vessel. The scope of the propulsion package includes the main engines and a generator set for the innovative vessel.

The shallow draft walk-to-work vessel is being built for operation off the east coast of Sakhalin Island in the Russian Far East, where it will be operated by Mercury Sakhalin.

The scope of the order includes two Cat® 3516C (2350kW) engines, two Cat C32 (994kW) engines and a Cat C9.3 (275kW) generator set. The high-speed 3516 engine platform is targeted primarily at offshore support vessels, tugs, and workboat applications, with a displacement of 78 litres, and a bore of 170mm and stroke of 215mm.

The vessel is propelled by pulling (ice milling) Azimuth thrusters, and the icebreaking hull design is based proven Wagenborg icebreaking technology. The vessel can break through ice up to 100cm. Wagenborg Offshore contributed operational experience operating ice breaking vessels in the shallow waters of the Caspian Sea as well as experience with walk-to-work vessels in the North Sea.

The vessel has been specially designed and optimised for year-round operations in the challenging conditions on the east coast of Sakhalin, where the winter season lasts over 220 days and sea ice is present for much of the year. The motion compensated gangway on this vessel has been optimised for both winter and summer operations, resulting in multiple gangway positions.

The new vessel combines a shallow draught of 3.15m, a transit draught of 4.0 m in open waters and a grounded bottom notation. The vessel, which is among the shipyard’s largest newbuilding orders, is due to be delivered in December 2021. In service, he vessel will perform year-round crew transfer services for up to 40 persons between the shallow Nabil Port to offshore platforms near the east coast of Sakhalin.

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