VESSEL REVIEW | Mary Anning – Feature packed survey/research vessel for British University

Blyth Catamarans’ 18-metre composite survey vessel, a project that was in the making for nearly 14 months, is now hard at work for Swansea University.

She was designed as a stable working platform that can work inshore as well as offshore with the speed to reach destinations quickly if needed. Notable features of Mary Anning include two trawl winches, a moon pool with multi-beam deployment, dive lift, and an external TV to show survey results.

Mary Anning (1799-1847) was one of the earliest female marine biologists, fossil collector and palaeontologists. She helped discover the Jurassic era of marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis by making some important discoveries, including the skeleton of the first ichthysoaur to be recognised and the first two plesiosaur skeletons ever found. 

The wheelhouse has a wet lab with TV, survey station, dinette with TV, workshop, bow fender for turbine transfer, a raised helm to give 360-degree visibility, and an observation platform for bird watching.

Blyth Catamarans’ largest vessel built to date was constructed under dual coding for both MCA class VI to carry 26 students, plus standard coding for cat II 12+2. She features six berths and four eight-man liferafts.

After successful sea trials the vessel reported a top speed of 28+ knots and a cruising speed of 18 knots. The vessel is powered by two MAN V8 750kW engines powering five-blade props from Clements Engineering via ZF 550A gearboxes. She has a range of 475 nautical miles.

Manoeuvrability is aided by a pair of 100kg Side Power thrusters, with electricity generated by a pair of Fischer Panda gensets, one 5kVa and one 10kVa. The installed steering system is powered hydraulic courtesy of Hypro Marine.

Hyraulic equipment comprises an A-frame, two trawl winches, a dive lift, multi-beam deployment and two Hiab deck winches. On deck are a pair of three kilowatt capstans and a 3.5kW windlass.

Mary Anning is owned by Swansea University, whose department of biosciences is using it for coastline survey, mapping critical habitats, studying water quality, observing marine wildlife and deploying marine equipment.

Mary Anning
Type of Vessel: Survey research vessel
Classification: MCA Class VI
Port of registry: Swansea
Flag: UK
Owner: Swansea University, UK
Designer: Blyth Catamarans, UK
CAD software: Solidworks
Builder: Blyth Catamarans, UK
Construction material: FRP
Length overall: 18.5 metres
Length waterline: 17.0 metres
Length between perpendiculars: 17.0 metres
Beam: 5.96 metres
Draught: 1.4 metres
Displacement: 39 tonnes (full load)
Main engines: 2 x MAN V8, each 750 kW
Gearboxs: 2 x ZF Marine 550A
Propulsion: 2 x Clements Engineering propellers
Generators: 2 x Fischer Panda, 10kVa and 5kVa
Side thrusters: 2 x Side Power, each 100 kg
Steering system: Hypro Marine
Maximum speed: 27 knots
Cruising speed: 19knots
Range: 475 nm
Batteries: 12 x Rolls AGM
Hydraulic equipment:

A Frame;

2 x trawl winch;

Dive lift;

Multibeam deployment;

2 x Hiab deck winch

Electronics supplied by: Mansbrite
Radar: Koden MDC-7006F
Depth sounder: Koden CVS-FX2BB
Radios: 2 x Icom M506E
Weatherfax: McMurdo Navtex
Autopilot: Navitron NT777
Compass: Koden KGC-222
GPS: Koden GPS-20A
Plotters: Lorenz Magnum Pro
AIS: Koden KAT100
Audio video system: CCTV
Other electronics: Sea Marshall Sarfinder
Deck equipment: 2 x 3kW capstans; 3.5kw windlass
Windows: Glass – Seaglaze Marine
Seating: Pilot suspension seats, dinette

Hella LED (exterior);

Quick LED (interior)

Floor/deck surface finishes: Gel non slip, vinyl
Interior designer: Blyth Catamarans
Interior fitout/furnishings: Blyth Catamarans
Liferafts: 4 x 8-pax
Tenders: 3.2m Airdeck
Type of fuel: Diesel
Fuel capacity: 5,400 L
Fuel consumption: 98 L/hr @ cruising speed
Freshwater capacity: 340 L
Accommodation: 6
Crew: 2
Passengers: 26

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