Friday, October 2, 2015

New 'Green Technology' Ships for Ocean Shipping Line and Multimodal Carrier Services to Hawaii

American Built Container Vessels to Hold More TEUs Scheduled for 2018 Launch
Shipping News Feature

US – Ocean shipping line and multimodal carrier, Matson, has announced the start of production on two new ‘Aloha Class’ container ships designed specifically for its Hawaii services, with greater TEU capacity and state-of-the-art ‘green ship technology’ features. After a small ceremony at Aker Philadelphia Shipyard in Pennsylvania, the cutting of steel plates began, initiating the construction work to build both ships. The contracts for the vessels were originally signed in 2013 for a total value of $418 million, with deliveries expected in the third and fourth quarters of 2018.

Since signing the contracts, engineering, planning and procurement work have been underway. The 260 metre (853 foot) long, 3,600 TEU vessels will be Matson's largest ships and, according to the carrier, the largest Jones Act containerships constructed to date. They will also be faster, designed to operate at speeds in excess of 23 knots, helping ensure timely delivery of goods in Hawaii. Though bigger, the ships are also designed to accommodate future needs by being able to navigate safely into some of Hawaii's smaller ports.

The new vessels will incorporate a number of ‘green ship technology’ features that will help protect the environment. These include a more efficient hull design, dual fuel engines that can be adapted to use liquefied natural gas (LNG), environmentally safe double hull fuel tanks and fresh water ballast systems. Matt Cox, President and CEO, Matson, said:

"These new ships are the future for Hawaii shipping and will bring a new level of efficiency and effectiveness to our service. The substantial investment in new technology underscores Matson's long-term commitment to Hawaii and our desire to serve the islands in the best, most environmentally friendly way into the future."

Matson also announced that the first of the two new ships will be named after the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye, a Hawaiian born American of Japanese immigrant stock and WW ll veteran who was a longstanding supporter of the US maritime industry and its role in supporting Hawaii's economy. Freight and shipping matters aside, the life and times in precis of Senator Inouye are well worth reading (here) for anyone interested in real life heroes. If anyone deserved a ship named after him it was this guy.

Aker Philadelphia Shipyard and Matson previously partnered on the construction of four containerships that were delivered between 2003 and 2006. All four vessels are currently servicing Matson’s Pacific trade.

Also under construction at the shipyard are three 50,000 dwt product tankers for Crowley Maritime Corporation, with planned deliveries through 2016, and the first two of four additional 50,000 dwt tankers for a subsidiary of Kinder Morgan, with planned deliveries between November 2016 and November 2017.

Photo: A youthful Daniel Inouye at enlistment for WW ll.