Guangzhou Shipyard, DNV Partner for Heavy Lift Job

Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI) has selected DNV as a key partner to classify a pair of innovative large semi-submersible heavy lift newbuildings. These 50,000 dwt vessels are purpose designed and built for the leading Chinese shipowner COSCO's newbuilding program.

Based on a close and constructive corporation between DNV and the Chinese class society, the vessels are dual-class--DNV and CCS.

"Several years ago, we worked with DNV on two smaller 18,000 dwt vessels for Cosco Shipping Ltd (COSL). These new vessels are much larger and more complex. The owner worked with DNV on the earlier vessels, which have done very well in the market since delivery, so the owner specifically requested to work with DNV again on this project," said Su Wei, the general manager of GSI's Marine Research Institute.

Ms. Su explained that the ships have a redundant propulsion system (DNV RPS notation) and have also been built in accordance with very specific stability calculations, particularly relating to submersion for loading.

Ying Hui, the head of the DNV Hull Section in Shanghai, added, "The submersion system works to a depth of 26m, which is extremely deep, so the submersion concept using compressed air is like a submarine." Ying added that he was pleased to be working with GSI on a second set of vessels following the delivery of the open-deck sister vessels Tai An Kou and Kang Sheng Kou to DNV class in 2002 and 2003.

The two 50,000 dwt vessels will be delivered in the second half of 2010. These purpose-built heavy lift vessels have a large open cargo deck measuring 177m x 43m and are capable of transporting the largest semi-submersible and jack-up rigs currently in the market.

The vessels are highly versatile and can handle a wide range of cargoes such as offshore structures, drilling rigs, topsides, jackets, FPUs, FPSOs, barges and other floating and non-floating structures.

In addition to these two vessels, DNV is responsible for classing another 60 ships, all MR tankers, in the GSI order book.

The new ships can submerge their main cargo decks up to a depth of 13m in order to load large floating structures. Ballasting will be controlled by large capacity compressors, which will enable operations to be completed in four hours. Large non-floating structures may also be stern-loaded or side-loaded onto the new ships from the quay side. The propulsion system is diesel-electric and will provide a speed of 14 knots. Prime design considerations of safety and reliability resulted in double separate redundant propulsion rooms (with Class notation RPS) and ballast systems.

These new vessels for COSCOL (COSCO Shipping Co., Ltd.) will be particularly suitable for the float-over installation of large topsides thanks to their ample strength, stability and ballast capacity. The aft buoyancy casings can be easily and quickly relocated using the vessel's own equipment. The commercial management and marketing of the vessels will be handled by Houston/Rotterdam-based NMA Maritime under an exclusive agreement.

The COSCOL newbuilds will have a deadweight of approximately 50,000 tonnes, an overall length of 216.7m, a length between perpendiculars of 212.1m, a breadth of 43.0m, a loaded draft of 9.85m, a hull depth of 13.0m and a cargo deck measuring 177.6m x 43.0m.

COSCOL was established in 2002 through an internal merger and went public on the Shanghai Stock Exchange under the name of COSCO Shipping. With registered capital of 468 million renminbi, COSCOL owns and operates 90 ships, including heavy lift, semi-submersible, ro-ro/lo-lo, multi-purpose and general cargo ships and pure car carriers, totalling over 1,400,000 dwt.

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