Midship Marine delivers oil spill recovery vessel

Midship Marine recently delivered a 95’×21’×10’5″ oil spill recovery vessel to Clean Gulf Associates. Both companies are located in Harvey, La. Designed by Midship, the H.I. Rich is the first of three aluminum OSRVs the shipyard is building for Clean Gulf. The total price tag for the three new boats is $10.5 million.

The H.I. Rich is designed to conduct cleanup operations during the day and night through the utilization of its X-band radar and infrared oil detection systems.

“In the aftermath of the Macondo disaster [Deepwater Horizon oil spill], it became very apparent we needed to enhance our spill response capabilities,” said Frank Paskewich, Clean Gulf’s executive director. “We needed something that was fast, with great recovery ability.”

The R.I. Rich has an estimated daylight recovery capacity of about 11,000 bpd of oil/water mix and is designed to operate up to 200 miles out in the Gulf as well as shallow-water inland marshes and estuaries. The new vessel has a draft of 5′. 

“We have the layered approach,” said Paskewich. “These vessels have dual capability. We have assets that can be positioned far out in the Gulf and close to shore. These vessels can do both.”

The newly delivered OSRV is equipped with a pair of three-brush Lamorside-mounted skimmers with 249 bbls. of recovered oil storage and the latest navigation and communications systems featuring the Furuno FAR211 X-band radar and an Aptomar nitrogen-cooled infrared camera.

Twin Caterpillar C-32 diesels, cranking out 1,320 hp at 2,100 rpm each, provide main propulsion. The Cats are connected to ZF 40″×45″ propellers through Twin Disc marine gears with 2.44:1 reduction ratios. The propulsion package gives the new OSRV a cruising speed of 24 knots. The average speed of the OSRVs used to fight the Macondo spill was about 10 knots. In addition, there is a Thrustmaster 60-hp bowthruster to enhance the R.I. Rich’s maneuverability.

Two Northern Lights gensets, sparking 65 kW of electrical power each, take care of the ship’s service power needs. 

Controls are by TwinDisc and the steering system is from Jastram. Tankage includes 2,500 gals. of fuel; 1,500 gals. water; and 10,958 gals. recovered oil/water mix.

The H.I. Rich was delivered in July. The sisterships are both due for delivery in September. Two of the OSRVs will be homeported in Louisiana and the third vessel will be stationed in Galveston, Texas. 

“By having three and positioning them this way in the Gulf, we’ll be able to respond within three hours of getting underway anywhere in the Gulf,” said Paskewich.

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