Tuco launches new type of energy efficient Offshore Support Vessel

 

Tuco Marine Group is launching a new type of energy efficient Offshore Support Vessel

Tuco partners with EffectShips International and Diab in an innovative technology project in designing a vessel in carbon fiber featuring unique and patented hull technology

Offshore Support Vessels are being used for transporting both cargo and passengers to oil – and gas - fields or windmill parks. Up until this moment, the conventional vessels in this category are built in steel or aluminum. The main focus within the innovation project, funded by The Danish Markedsmodningsfonden is the development of a new type of vessel that can set new standards for energy efficiency, by being significantly lighter thus using significantly less fuel.

’’ The focus within this innovative project is the development and build of a prototype of a new type of vessel that can set new technological standards for energy efficiency, by being significantly lighter thus using significantly less fuel. The project partners will each bring know-how on different fields which brought together will make it possible to create new technological constellations. ’’

                  – Jonas Pedersen, Managing Director of Tuco Marine Group

A 17m prototype vessel is going to be build using the ASV (Air Supported Vessel) Technology, where minimizing hull resistance is the key ingredient, utilizing – pressurized air – entrapped under the hull. The hull integrated air cushion chambers, will support and separate hull and water. An ASV is designed for a minimum of air cushion ventilation.

 

When activating the air support system, approximately 70% of the overall weight of the vessel will be supported on a cushion of pressurized air, entrapped in a very well enclosed air cavity underneath the vessel. In contradiction to a hovercraft or a SES, using rubber skirts to seal of the air cushion, the new ASV Technology utilizes solid, rigid hull elements to maintain the pressurized air underneath the boat. ASV designs can be “tailor made’’ and / or optimized for different functions, all depending on the end users’ requirements and vessel operations. For even further weight reduction, the Offshore Support Vessel is going to be built in a carbon fiber sandwich.

'' Environmental aspects, operational capabilities and economy in use have been key drivers when the new ASV technology was developed. '' – says Tor Kolbjørn from EffectShips International, when asked about the values of ASV Technology.

The remarkable low ASV hull/water resistance enables use of reduced size engines, resulting in a vessel consuming much less fuel pr nautical mile and/or ton transported / passenger carried. Back to back comparisons with ASV monohulls vs. conventional designs have shown a reduction in consumption at 25 – 30 knots speed (20 m vessel) of 50 %! (Tests of first prototype, published in Motor Boat and Yachting). ESI is of the opinion that any vessel can be further improved by combining complementary State of the Art technologies. Combining high efficiency propulsion, lightweight construction and outfitting; with ASV hull technology, remarkable reductions in fuel consumption are within reach. Scientific documentation of fuel consumption for the first full scale ASV Mono test vest vessel has shown a staggering 50% reduction compared with the market leading conventional vessels of same size and weight. These values have been confirmed in the SSPA towing tank where the Zero emission ASV commuter ferry hull was tank tested. Reducing the consumption to half is equivalent to reducing the emissions by 50%. Another benefit is a significant reduction in wake wash, enabling ASV’s to operate at high speeds, without disturbing the seabed, in coastal, congested waters where conventional vessel will have to slow down. Reduced wake wash is key success factor for the BB GREEN project - the first battery powered fast ASV commuter ferry.

EffectShips International (ESI) is going to be in charge of the development of the hull design of the new Air Support Vessel technology.

DIAB Group, who delivers sandwich composite solutions and core materials for the Marine Industry, are going to further develop the carbon fiber composites. Sandwich composites are becoming more and more popular in structural design, mainly for their ability to substantially decrease weight while maintaining mechanical performance. This weight reduction results in a number of benefits, including increased range, higher payloads and decreased fuel consumption. All have a positive impact on cost as well as on the environment. This newly developed vessel will be an addition to Tuco Marines New ProZero range of professional workboats.

Tuco Marine Group is going to be responsible for the overall design and construction. The ESI-vessel is going to be constructed at Tuco’s facilities during 2014 and will be available for testing at the yard facilities in the autumn 2015.

The technology innovation project is made possible by funding granted from The Danish Markedsmodningsfonden.

 MMF