Vane Brothers, Baltimore, recently added two newly constructed vessels to the company’s growing fleet — the 100'x34', 4,200 tug Philadelphia and the purpose built 361'x62', 53,000 bbl. asphalt barge Double Skin 510A.

Primarily tasked with towing petroleum barges engaged in the North Atlantic coastwise trade, the Philadelphia is the fifth of eight 4,200-hp model bow tugs contracted by Vane Brothers through St. Johns Ship Building, Palatka, Fla. The first in the series, Elizabeth Anne, was delivered in January 2016, while the sixth in the series, the New York, is scheduled for completion this summer.

The DS-510A is the second newbuild asphalt barge delivered to Vane Brothers by Conrad Deepwater South, Amelia, La. The first was the DS-509A, which was put into service in July 2015.

“Vane Brothers’ New Vessel Construction Program is a commitment we keep to our customers and our mariners to invest in the safest, most modern and efficient fleet,” Vane Brothers president C. Duff Hughes, said in a prepared statement. “We remain very pleased with the quality of tugboats coming out of St. Johns Ship Building and the barges being built by Conrad.”

The fifth Elizabeth Anne-class tug for Vane Brothers. Vane Brothers photo

The fifth Elizabeth Anne-class tug for Vane Brothers. Vane Brothers photo

Designed by Entech Designs LLC, Kenner, La., the Philadelphia has a draft of 13' and is powered by two Caterpillar 3516, Tier 3 (“A” Rated) engines, producing 2,100 hp at 1,600 rpm each. Ship’s service power comes from two John Deere PowerTech 4045 gensets, sparking 99 kW of electrical power each. A third John Deere 4045 drives the Intercontinental DD200 towing winch. All Elizabeth Anne Class tugs feature the newest Simrad electronics package installed by Rhodes Electronics. Comfortable accommodations are available for up to seven crewmembers.

The DS-510A double-hull tank barge utilizes a sophisticated thermal heating system that keeps asphalt at approximately 300°F so that the highly viscous liquid flows more easily. The new tank barge operates at a pumping rate of 8,000 bbls. per hour (bph) with a loading rate of 10,000 bph. Along with transporting asphalt, which is primarily used for road construction, roofing and other building applications, the barge is generally suited for moving heavy oil products.

Ken Hocke has been the senior editor of WorkBoat since 1999. He was the associate editor of WorkBoat from 1997 to 1999. Prior to that, he was the editor of the Daily Shipping Guide, a transportation daily in New Orleans. He has written for other publications including The Times-Picayune. He graduated from Louisiana State University with an arts and sciences degree, with a concentration in English, in 1978.