VESSEL REVIEW | John Duigan – King Island’s new purpose-built landing craft

Malaysia’s Vitawani Shipbuilding recently completed John Duigan, an 80-metre landing craft for Australia’s Tasmanian Ports Corporation (TasPorts), which will service King Island, between the states of Victoria and Tasmania in the country’s south-east.

The vessel successfully departed Vitawani’s Sarawak Shipyard in January as King Islander II, heading for Tasmania with a crew supplied by Polaris Marine.

Once there, the vessel underwent minor modifications and a renaming by Tasmanian workers at the Launceston shiplift, to ensure the new vessel was ready for service.

She is now operating under Bass Island Line (BIL), with a weekly service departing Geelong on Sunday, departing Grassy, King Island on Monday and departing Bell Bay in mainland Tasmania on Wednesday, returning to Geelong.

BIL started operating in April 2017. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of the state-owned TasPorts. BIL said that its intention was that Burnie would be the dedicated port for the service in the medium term, but that this plan is yet to be finalised.

The livestock port for the John Duigan will be Devonport until Burnie is made ready, with Stanley being used for the short term.

John Duigan was tailored specifically to King Island’s freight needs. That includes deck fittings to handle King Island’s diverse freight of containers, livestock and project cargo, as well as increased refrigerated capacity to meet customer demand.

John Duigan is an 80-metre vessel with a beam of 16 metres, a designed depth of 4.8 metres, and a draught of 3.68 metres. She has a deck area of 747m2 and a capacity of 114 TEU.

Powered by two Cummins engines, each rated for 1,200kW at 1,800rpm, the vessel’s design speed is approximately 12 knots via a pair of 2,200 by 1,470mm four-blade propellers.

Designed by Malaysian naval architects United Design and constructed at Vitawani Shipbuilding’s Sarawak yard, the vessel features accommodation facilities for a full complement of 18 and is classified by Bureau Veritas. It was designed specifically for transfer activities around islands.

The vessel has a V-shaped hull and is significantly longer, heavier and wider than the previous ship it is replacing, Investigator II, which is expected to ensure substantially better sea-handling in Bass Strait, improving the reliability of the service.

It is also a new vessel and was tailored specifically to meet King Island cargo task requirements.

Compared with the Investigator II, the new landing craft has 83 per cent increased deck space, 120 per cent increase in weight capacity and 90 per cent increase in container capacity, plus an increased speed of 12 knots from ten.

The vessel will be able to carry 20 12.2-metre livestock trailers per sailing. This is a significant increase on the Investigator II, which can only handle eight. BIL said it will also provide protected stow for vehicles on John Duigan.

John Duigan
Type of vessel:Landing craft
Classification:Bureau Veritas
Port of registry:Devonport, Australia
Owner:Tasmanian Ports Corporation (TasPorts)/Bass Island Line, Australia
Operator:Bass Island Line, Australia
Designer:United Design, Malaysia
CAD software:AutoCad
Builder:Vitawani Shipbuilding, Malaysia
Construction material:Mild steel
Plate cutting:CNC plasma machine
Length overall:80.00 metres
Length waterline:76.99 metres
Length bp:74.99 metres
Beam:16.00 metres
Draught:3.594 metres
Depth:4.800 metres
Displacement:3,505.962 tonnes (full load)
Deadweight:2,309.457 tonnes
Tonnages:1,738GRT; 521NRT
Main engines:2 x Cummins KTA50-M2, 1,200 kW each @ 1,800 rpm
Gearboxes:2 x 5.044:1
Propulsion:2 x 2,200 x 1,470mm 4-blade FPP with Kort nozzles
Auxiliary engine:Cummins QSM11-M, 260bkW @ 1,800 rpm

2 x Cummins QSB D(M), 150kW;

Cummins 6BT5.9DM, 80kW;

Cummins 4BT3.9-G1, 48kW

Side thruster:ZF TT 4000 L-Drive unit, 449 kW @ 1,576 rpm
Steering system:3.5tm hydraulic steering system (connecting rod type)
Maximum speed:12.4 knots
Cruising speed:10 knots
Hydraulic equipment:

Sliding doors;

anchor windlass/ramp door;

stern winch; 

steering gear

Electronics supplied by:Mark Maritime
Radar:Furuno FAR-1518
Depth sounder:Furuno FE-800
Radio:Furuno FM-8900
Autopilot:Simrad AP-70
Compass:Yokogawa CMZ-900B
GMDSS:Furuno RC-1800T
GPS:Furuno GP-170
AIS:Furuno FA-150
Deck equipment:

Anchor windlass/ramp door;

mooring winch;

stern anchor windlass

Water maker:Norwater
Rescue boat:1 unit
Type of fuel:Diesel
Fuel capacity:404.2m3
Fuel consumption:9,304.8L/hr (75% MCR)
Freshwater capacity:84.3m3
Accommodation:2 x 1-man rooms; 8 x 2-man rooms;

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