We have had so much rain this year that it’s a subject that’s brought up wherever I go. (I know that it doesn’t compare to the snow the northeastern U.S. suffered through this winter or the extreme drought conditions in some places out west. I’m not suggesting that it is in any way as difficult a situation — slow your roll.) I’m not whining. I’m just saying that in the south Louisiana area lots of rain is a normal occurrence. This year, however, it has really been annoying.
I bring this up because on Tuesday I was at Leevac Shipyards Lake Charles (La.), for the christening of Aries Marine’s new 270'x56'x21'6", diesel-electric, DP-2 FiFi-1 platform supply vessel Ram Country. The temperature was in the low 70s for the event and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. (Right now, we are currently under a severe weather warning — again.) Back in November when the companies held the same christening event for the sistership, Ram Nation, the weather had been pretty bleak for days. But that particular day was unseasonably warm and dry. How do they do it?
The Ram Country was built at Leevac Shipyards Jennings (La.) and later transported to Leevac's yard in Lake Charles for the vessel’s outfitting, commissioning, and testing.
“Let’s take the beautiful weather as a good omen,” Court Ramsey, Aries’ president and CEO, told those in attendance.
Construction of the Ram Country took about 21 months from the cutting of steel to delivery. The PSV can carry about 260,000 gals. of fuel, 12,500 bbls. liquid mud, and 8,500 cu. ft. bulk mud. Power is provided by four Caterpillar generators producing 1,825 kW of electrical power each, and propulsion is the responsibility of a pair of Schottel 2,500-kW Z-drives and a pair of Schottel tunnel thrusters forward. The diesel-electric propulsion package is part of the Siemens BlueDrive PlusC integrated electrical system. “The back and forth [between Aries and Leevac] during the design phase was first class and a lot of fun to be a part of,” said Ramsey. “It worked out well.”
So, if the Northeast finds itself in the grips of another winter weather anomaly in 2016, perhaps the christening of a new Aries PSV in Boston or New York or Portland, Maine, could help. Sorry, California, you’ve got a whole different problem.