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Squadron Removed from Gerald R. Ford Due to COVID-19 Scare

Gerald R. Ford at sea on an earlier cruise - U.S. Navy photo by Erik Hildebrandt

By The Maritime Executive 05-29-2020 10:11:52

The U.S. Navy is removing a strike fighter squadron from the aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford due to a COVID-19 scare involving a sailor who tested positive for the virus. While the sailor that tested positive for the disease had not been aboard the carrier and is currently in isolation, the Navy believed that the sailor had been in close proximity to the squadron. The Gerald R. Ford proceeded to sea as planned

The squadron had boarded the carrier to prepare for ongoing carrier qualifications but was removed from the Ford before the carrier sailed from its base in Norfolk, Virginia. The team’s movements are also being restricted at this time because of possible exposure to the virus. The sailors reportedly had all been screened before joining the carrier and none of them were showing any symptoms of the virus. H…

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The ferry of the future is here, but has its limitations. File image courtesy Maid of the Mist

By Paul Benecki 05-29-2020 10:00:00

(Article originally published in Jan/Feb 2020 edition.)

An electric revolution is under way in the ferry sector. America’s largest ferry network, Washington State Ferries, has announced plans to deploy plug-in hybrid vessels on most of its routes. Norway’s leading ferry operators, Norled and Fjord1, are deploying multiple all-electric vessels for their shorter runs. In Canada, BC Ferries has just taken delivery of its first two hybrid-electric vessels. 

Many other operators are considering diesel-electric power, which would give them the flexibility to add new energy sources later. If electrification is the future for ferries, then Niagara Falls is a good place to find a preview.

Maid of the Mist

The Maid of the Mist sightseeing tour at Niagara Falls has been running since the 1…

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Höegh LNG releases its latest interim results

Höegh LNG Holdings Ltd. has reported its financial results for the quarter ended 31 March 2020.

Highlights for 1Q20:EBITDA of US$59.6 million.Net loss of US$1 million.Dividend of US$0.025 per share paid in the first quarter of 2020.Contract coverage increased to close to 100% for 2020.Completed revolving credit facility for up to US$80 million.Completed new senior unsecured bond issue of NOK 650 million.Subsequent events:Selected preferred bidder for two new FSRU projects in Latin America.AIE received approval for increasing the import capacity through the Port Kembla Gas Terminal.Completed the amendment, extension and US$45 million upsizing of Independence’s debt facility.Höegh LNG and Total reached a final binding agreement to settle the boil-off dispute regarding Neptune and Cape Ann.Suspension of dividends and cost savings plan implemented targeting US$9 - 11 million in savings for 2020.President and CEO of Höegh LNG Sveinung J.S. Støhle comments:

“I am proud to r…

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BPA examines barriers to shore power in UK ports

Following a new research into the barriers to shore power in UK ports, the British Ports Association believes a Green Maritime Fund would be critical to making the initiative a reality.

Shore power, also known as cold ironing, is the provision of shore-based electricity to ships at berth, allowing them to turn off their auxiliary engines.

These auxiliary engines are used for crew and passenger accommodation and cargo operations (such as pumps or heating or cooling systems) and typically use a type of diesel.

Illustration; Image by Navingo

Shore connections either provide power from the grid or nearby generation sources. They are commonly fixed at one berth but mobile solutions (by barge) are also in operation.

There are currently no large scale shore power connections in UK ports, due to the prohibitively high capital costs associated with such projects.

The BPA said that the price of electricity in the UK and a general lack of consisten…

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Three electrically powered RMG cranes at DCT Gdansk fully operational

Three new electrically powered Rail-Mounted Gantries (RMG cranes) dedicated for DCT Gdansk’s railway siding have commenced operations.

The cranes were purchased as a part of DCT’s T2b expansion program. They are 47 m long, 20 m high and 28 m wide and are designed to work on rails. Being electrically powered they have lower emissions than the Rubber-Tyred gantries they replace, and are faster with a maximum travel speed of 150 m per minute, the port said.

Image credit DCT Gdansk

An additional feature of the RMG cranes is that they can horizontally rotate a container a full 360 degrees and operate 24 hours a day in all weather conditions including wind speeds of 90 km/h, DCT Gdansk said.

The RMG cranes will also be equipped with automatic container number reading systems to increase the efficiency, reliability but above all the safety of handling trains.

“Investment in rail to improve efficiency and capacity expansion are extremely important compone…

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P&O Cruises’ LNG-powered newbuild to go on sea trials

Iona, an LNG-powered cruise ship being built for British P&O Cruises, is now a step closer to its delivery as the newbuild is scheduled to arrive in Rotterdam for inspection work in early June.

Image Courtesy: Meyer Werft

The vessel has been undergoing final outfitting in Bremerhaven will soon enter dry dock in Rotterdam, shipbuilder Meyer Werft said.

The passage from Bremerhaven to the Netherlands will also be used for technical and nautical test runs in the North Sea. For this reason, Iona will be leaving the Columbuskaje Pier as early as 30 May.

Onboard, everyone is working hand in hand to complete the 50th cruise ship built by Meyer Werft. The work has been going on since the ship was transferred over the river Ems. Nevertheless, the corona crisis is causing considerable restrictions in the final fitting of Iona, according to the shipbuilder.

After work on board had to be temporarily interrupted due to the corona crisis in March, the Port M…

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