Blogs

file photo courtesy of Diamantino Rosa

The Road to Green-Land

By Dimitri G. Vassilacos and Jason Dallas 2019-07-15 17:59:27

Although shipping is undoubtedly - and by far - the most efficient/greenest way of transporting large cargos across long distances, it is clear that the industry is under increasing pressure from pretty much everyone, from countries and international organizations all the way to investors and pressure groups, to become even greener. Given the industry’s critical role as the connecting tissue of global logistics and its impact on the overall economy this is no simple task to achieve.  ...

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Image courtesy of Piet Sinke

The Future of Tugs in a Changing World

By Captain Henk Hensen 2019-07-13 19:36:10

Currently several means of transport and workboats are undergoing accelerated development towards automation and automated movement.  Almost daily publications appear about automation in shipping. Names of large maritime industrial companies are often found in these publications, giving the idea that they are a major driving force behind these developments. The question can and should be asked, how realistic are these developments? Are they generally applicable, applicable for certain sectors or trades, or perhaps not applicable at all?      In...

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file photo courtesy of Diamantino Rosa

Record Low Newbuild Orders Placed in Q2, 2019

By Olivia Watkins 2019-07-06 20:50:35

Newbuilding orders dropped to record lows in Q2 2019.  Bulkers The total number of bulker newbuild orders is down 73 percent for the first half of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. So far this year, Panamaxes have been the most popular size to order with an interesting order placed by Klaveness Combination carriers for two Panamax CABUs (83,600 DWT, 2020, Jiangsu New Yangzijiang) which will increase the global fleet to a...

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Tomorrow’s Developments Today

By The Maritime Executive 2019-06-11 17:09:14

Geostationary (GEO) satellites have provided sterling service for many years in the field of broadband data transmission. The most widely-known property of high-orbiting geostationary satellites is that when viewed from the ground, they appear to occupy a fixed point in the sky – but nothing ever remains fixed, not least the principles and processes of satellite technology. Given the ever-increasing demand for rapid, seamless yet cost-effective broadband coverage, the coming years are set to witness a massive expansion in the...

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Credit Piet Sinke

A Safety Management System – Beacon or Burden?

By Karen van Vliet and Jan-Hendrik Hensen 2019-06-01 21:35:40

Whether a company implements a Safety Management System (SMS) due to ISM Code or Subchapter M requirements or to align its own internal processes, the value it will add to the organization will be found in the quality of the set-up of such a system. Will it be an administrative burden? Or a beacon to light the right direction? With careful attention paid to the level and complexity of the organization and with a strong focus on the user, a...

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Key Differences Between the ISM Code and Subchapter M

By Karen van Vliet and Jan-Hendrik Hensen 2019-05-27 17:53:26

The ISM Code requires shipping companies to implement a safety management system designed to should ensure safe operating practices and should be complied to worldwide – tugs, however, are mostly not required to do so. However, in the U.S., U.S.-flag towing vessels should comply to Subchapter M. This blog provides insight on the similarities and differences between the two. ISM Code During the late 1980s, various serious accidents including the capsizing of the Herald of the Free Enterprise highlighted the...

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Photo: Østensjø Rederi, Norway: Østensjø Rederi’s Ajax, VS escort tug, performing DNV full scale escort trials.

Ship Escorting - A Changing Mission

By Captain Henk Hensen 2019-05-12 18:19:46

Ships are escorted in several ports around the world, for instance in the U.S., Europe, Australia and Japan. Escorting can be carried out in several ways, with all types of tugs at low speeds and with purpose built tugs at higher speeds. It is mainly the latter that is specifically called escorting. What is escorting? According to the book Tug Use in Port the objective s of escorting are: 1. To ensure a safe passage through the approach channel and...

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Credit: Erik Kravets

Who's Really in Charge of the Ship?

By Erik Kravets 2019-05-11 23:30:16

It’s an exciting time to be a captain. In an industry characterized by restructuring, consolidation and danger, personal skill and seafaring knowledge have never been more in-demand - or, for that matter, more needed. Yet the Council of American Master Mariners asked Erik Kravets, partner at Kravets & Kravets, to try to answer the following question: “Who’s really in charge of the ship?”  In spite of the unique contribution a good captain can make to the success of a voyage,...

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Credit: Rotterdam pilot Marijn van Hoorn

Tugs: Consider Training Needs and Training Tools

By Captain Henk Hensen 2019-04-24 23:02:07

Training in tug operations is even harder needed than before; the time of a simple conventional 500 or 1,000hp tug is completely past.  There are many reasons why training has become ever more important: •  The work of a tug master is very often of high risk. •  Tugs and tug deck equipment are becoming more complex. •  New tug type are coming on the market with different handling characteristics. •  Decision support systems, data sensing and...

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Credit: Dutch Maandblad Maritiem

Towing Equipment with the Crucial Link

By Captain Henk Hensen 2019-04-21 20:42:15

The tug’s towing equipment is the crucial link between tug and ship for transferring the forces generated by the tug to the ship. The link consists of various elements which differ by tug. These elements are in the simplest versions just a towing bitt and towline or a somewhat handier equipment a towing hook and towline. On most tugs following towing equipment can be found: towing winch; fairlead; towing line, and sometimes towing pins. Each element should...

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