French Polynesia is a remote and unique place as far as shipping requirements are concerned. With a small population spread over a vast area of sea, it requires very special craft to service it effectively. That is why this interesting and impressive Ro-Pax ferry has been awarded in a category of its own. It is truly multi-purpose and operates as a Ro-Pax ferry, cargo ship and even tanker around the inner islands of the Society Islands archipelago. The thought and imagination that has gone into its design is astonishing.
“In addition to being the largest operating vessel based on a Mauric design,” the designer told Baird Maritime, “it is also specifically adapted for operations in French Polynesia, with its unique harbour equipment and the sea states encountered in the Southern Pacific. This is the result of a close collaboration between our company and the shipowner with the goal of achieving a tailor-made design answering to those specific operational requirements besides financial constraints and applicable regulations.”
Extensive hydrodynamics studies using CFD analysis and tank testing were used to develop an optimised hull form ensuring both seakeeping and the necessary performance. The ferry is therefore capable of making well above 17 knots and it can maintain it speed in high sea states and still retain a high level of comfort.
Mauric said it has also been involved in low-emission and even zero-emission vessel design projects in order to comply with current and future local, national, European and global (i.e. IMO) regulations.
“We invested in this field over the past ten years and we continue internal and collaborative research and development projects. We have even been proposing sailing cargo ship designs, wind-assisted Ro-Pax designs, and a range of zero-emission crewboats and passenger vessels.”
The company added that it has no bias towards a preferred alternative propulsion option and is instead open to offering design solutions that are within the threshold allowed by customers’ preferences.
Mauric was able to embark on new design projects over the past year, saying it had not been directly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We generally see the effect of crisis two to three years after, and we are consequently very cautious in our development plans for the company.”
Mauric’s intention now is to capitalise on the latest developments made in the range of vessels from 50 metres to 150 metres in length and to market the resulting designs and innovations to customers.
“We are optimistic about the development of innovative technologies for zero emission energy systems such as hydrogen, methanol, ammonia, and even wind assistance,” the company told Baird Maritime. “All these technologies offer great opportunities for naval architects to propose new concepts and tailor-made solutions. We are very enthusiastic about the available solutions offered to us in our ship design process.”
The dynamic nature of France’s own workboat industry means it is easy for Mauric as a company to collaborate with various shipyards regardless of their specialty, whether it’s in fishing vessels, passenger vessels, or crewboats.
“French shipyards are open to innovation and to proposing alternative solutions to shipowners,” the designer remarked. “We also know that reliability is important when you operate at sea, so we build vessels that offer practical solutions that nonetheless feature some innovation in their respective designs.”
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