Vane Bunkering commissions powerful new ATBs

Vane Brothers Company has announced a contract for three articulated tug barges (ATBs) to be built at the Conrad Orange Shipyard in Orange. Recently the marine transportation company has been expanding its fleet with several new constructions.

Designed by Greg Castleman of Castleman Maritime, based in Clear Lake Shores, Texas, the tugs are 33.5 metres long with an 11.6-metre-beam. They will be mated to 80,000-barrel (12,700-cubic-metre) barges designed by Bristol Harbour Group and being built by Conrad Industries of Amelia. These 123-metre-long barges have a 22.5-metre beam.

Each ATB unit will utilise a Beacon-Finland JAK 700 tug/barge coupling system. Crew access to the barges will be facilitated by a Schoelhorn-Albrecht custom gangway. Coastal Marine Equipment of Gulfport MS will supply deck capstans on the tugs.

A pair of Cummins QSK-60M, Tier three engines, each rated at 1,640kW was recently delivered to the yard to be installed in the first tug. They are being coupled to Reintjes WAF 873 gears with 7.087:1 reduction and will turn 2.6-metre four-blade bronze propellers mounted on 240-millimetre shafts. Two Cummins-powered 125kW generators will provide electrical power for each vessel with a Cummins powered 60kW emergency generator.

The tugs will have accommodation for up to ten crew members. The boats will be classed ABS-A1 TUG, AMS, ABCU. Delivery of the first tug, to be named ‘Assateague’, is scheduled for August 2017.

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