The role of the naval architect in the design and construction of ships has become steadily more important. While, obviously, the profession of naval architecture has only been recognised as a separate and distinct one for about 200 years, the reality is that ship designers have been around for millennia. Recently, however, with the development of CAD-CAM technology, the involvement and value of naval architects in the shipbuilding process has leapt ahead.
Essentially, a good naval architect, well briefed, can save the builder and owner very significant amounts of money.
Naval architects have always been closely involved with the ship production process but never more so than quite recently. Current digital technology has enabled designers to exactly specify lofting and plate cutting and other detailed pre-welding work. Thinking back to the “good old days,” prior to about 1995, the changes have been phenomenal. Very importantly, that digital technology seems to advance almost monthly.
I well remember a then leading builder of OSVs in Asia explaining to me 20 years ago how it was far more economical for him to spend three times as much on a fully digital CAD-CAM design than on a traditional one because of the savings achieved in lofting, plate cutting, and construction. CAD really does what naval architects have always done, just more quickly and neatly. It is the CAM part that makes all the difference in the economics of shipbuilding.
Design • Testing • Analysis • Software • Engineering
While the CAD-CAM aspects of modern naval architecture are vital, it is the other areas of shapes, structures, and mechanical engineering that have come a long way very quickly, all strongly enabled by CAM technology. The advances in vessel design in terms of shapes, structures, power, propulsion, electronics, and other equipment have been remarkable so far in this millennium. It has been a very exciting time for the profession.
Baird Maritime this week provides some interesting evidence of those advances in this Naval Architecture Week. Some very interesting vessels that illustrate many aspects of modern naval architecture will be reviewed or described.
For example, the Norwegian-designed and -built dive and ROV support boat Karen illustrates numerous advances achieved by its designer/builder Hukkelberg. It is a very exciting and impressive boat.
The BC Ferries hybrid diesel electric vessels illustrate the pace of change in the propulsion system side of naval architecture that are necessitated by current environmental requirements in many parts of the world.
Damen’s concept illustrations for its fast crewboat show the basis for the development of modern vessel designs, so does the development of the fast diesel electric hybrid patrol boat built by Onego Ships in Western Russia for the Port of Vanino in the environmentally-sensitive Russian Far East.
Another very interesting concept is Berlin publisher Media Pioneer’s floating office, Pioneer One. It is concept that may have a big future in that it offers a mobile office that can be adapted to many changes in business circumstances and, in many cases, avoid the cost of land purchase.
As always with new design concepts, the profession of naval architecture gives us much to think about.
- Karen – Small but versatile fish farm support dive boat for northern Norway
- Viktor Vorotylo – Second of two hybrid-powered, multi-purpose workboats for Far East Russia’s Vanino port
- The Pioneer One – Berlin-based media start-up introduces world’s first purpose-built floating newsroom
Features and Opinion:
– “An advantage of DACS is that it can be relatively easily installed on existing vessels…”
– by Nelson Dela Cruz, Baird Maritime correspondent
– “…the 181- by 40-metre, 2,375TEU vessel will have the distinction of being the largest ship ever to sail on the Mississippi River.”
– “Should [naval auxiliary] ships be put out to worldwide tender and ordered from wherever the best deal is to be found?”
– by Michael Grey, former long-term editor of Lloyd’s List
News and Gear:
- BMT to design new ferries for Isles of Scilly operator
- First steel cut for seventh trawler in series for Norebo
- Keel laid for new shuttle ferry for Tallink
- Newbuild joins Captain Cook Cruises’ ferry fleet
- Keppel to build dredger for US operator
- Seacat orders Bar Technologies crewboat pair
- France’s TSM gets new Damen tug
- LDA’s newest windfarm maintenance vessel hits the water
- Ocean Surveys takes delivery of 10-metre survey boat
- World’s largest LNG-powered containership joins CMA CGM fleet
- Bollinger to build four more Sentinel-class cutters for US Coast Guard
- Knud E Hansen unveils new icebreaking expedition ship
- CIMC Raffles launches new krill transporter for Aker Biomarine
- Manor’s newest crewboat sails on first charter
- New pilot boat delivered to Gulf of Tonkin operator
- Naming ceremony held for Japan’s first LNG bunkering vessel
- Damen launches marine aggregates dredger for Hanson
- Russian icebreaker Arktika completes sea trials
- Armon launches new hybrid ferry for Baleària
- First steel cut for Seabourn’s second ultra-luxury cruise ship
- Neptune Marine launches cable transport barge for NKT
- Mayflower unmanned research trimaran hits the water
- Austal Australia delivers Guardian-class patrol boat for Palau
- Fincantieri launches new patrol vessel for Qatari navy
Recent Important Features:
– “Why was the largest ship builder in NSW, which could easily have successfully completed the project, not so much as contacted?”
– by Neil Baird, co-founder, Baird Maritime
Remember to come back every day to see the latest news, opinion and vessel reviews!
Call for content!
Any news or views about the global maritime tourism, ferry and cruise industries? Send it through to [email protected] ASAP (between now and September 25), so we can add it to this current edition of Naval Architecture Week!
We are after:
- Vessels – Orders, new deliveries, under construction
- Gear – Latest innovations and technology in the naval architecture sector
- Interviews – Owners, operators, designers, builders etc.
- Reminiscences – Do you have any exciting, amusing or downright dangerous anecdotes from your time in the naval architecture world? (example here)
- Other – Any other relevant news