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Arklow Accord is the latest of a new series for ship-owner Arklow Shipping Ltd, however the bulk oriented cargo vessel is also a first for the company to use this ship name, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The launching of newbuild Arklow Accord (Nb. 438) which took place on Friday, represents the second of a six ships using the Arklow 'A' naming scheme. The order by ASL is with shipbuilder Ferus Smit at their Dutch shipyard located in Westerbroek. 

Currently the company have almost 60 vessels including Dutch division Arklow Shipping Nederland B.V. and this milestone is to be exceeded with the roll-out of the Arklow A - series. 

The design of Arklow Accord will see its operations chiefly employed in the shipment of corn, wheat and other bulk commodities in European waters.

The inland yard at Westerbroek, is where Irish flagged leadship Arklow Abbey was also given the customary launched sideways in July and with the newbuild entering service two months later.

According to Ferus Smit, the design is a slightly modified version of the first series of 8600dwt bulkers that the shipyard built under the Arklow B – series. The new design is adapted for iceclass 1A, with modified bow form and propulsion with a propeller nozzle added.

At the same time, the main engine output was decreased to 2000 kW for better fuel efficiency.

Listed below are the basic characteristics of Arklow Accord:
– Loa = 119.495 mtr
– Lpp = 116.895 mtr
– B = 14.99 mtr
– D = 9.70 mtr
– T max = 7.160 mtr
– Hold volume = 350.000 cft

The delivery of the Arklow registered newbuild is due for January 2020.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#DoubleEvents - On the same day ICG’s new Irish Ferries cruiseferry had a first steel-plate cutting ceremony held in a German yard, this was in marked contrast to Arklow Shipping having yet another ship launched in neighbouring Netherlands, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Arklow Clan (yard No. 427) an open-hatch decker was launched successfully on Friday at Ferus Smit’s yard in Westerbroek. The newbuild is the fourth 5,200dwt general cargoship built so far in a series of 10 that began with the ‘Cadet’ last year.

Likewise of interim sisters, Arklow Cape and Arklow Castle (see report), the latest newbuild was launched into the waterway with the public having an opportunity to view from the opposite side along the ‘Winschoterdiep’. The launching however was performed without ceremony, as the christening of Arklow Clan is to take place at a later stage.

Last year marked the 50th year of Arklow Shipping Limited following an amalgamation in 1966 of three independent shipowning families. The Tyrrell, Kearon and Hall families all had origins directly in trading auxiliary sailing schooners from the banks of the River Avoca that flows through the Co. Wicklow port.

Arklow Clan is a short-sea trader built from a new design or of the ‘C’ Class series that will each have a maximized hold volume of 220.000 cft and a carrying capacity over 5000 deadweight tons. These characteristics will make this newbuild and sisters still fall under the 3,000 gross tons limit.

The single-hold vessel will be given an 1A iceclass notation and propelled by a 1740 kW MaK engine with a single ducted propeller. 

Delivery of Arklow Clan is scheduled for May, the same month in 2018 that was originally announced by ICG/Irish Ferries newbuild for delivery. As reported today, the giant 50,000grt cruiseferry, however will be delivered by FSG Flensburg later in mid-2018.

Returning to Ferus-Smit’s Dutch yard which has been contracted also by ASL for a quartet of small handy-sized bulk-carriers. They will be around 16,500dwt each and with the first pair to be delivered next year.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#NEWBUILDS-Two of the latest newbuilds for Arklow Shipping, one built in Spain and the second ship  comleted from a South Korean shipyard,  both entered service late last year and raises the fleet total to 44 vessels.

The northern Spanish built Arklow Forest became the 10th 'F' class vessel which was launched from Astilleros de Murueta SA. She is a 2,998grt vessel with a  single-box hold with two portable bulkheads which can be placed into 10 positions for cargo separation. Her main engine plant is a MAN 6L27/38 2040kW gearbox with CPP, delivering about 12 knots.

Also entering service in late 2011 the Arklow Moor a 13,975dwt newbuild which formed the fifth in the series of 'M'-class vessels and she was built in South Korea by the Mokpo Shipyard Corporation. The class have four holds with a total grain capacity of 18,110 m3. They are fitted with a MaK 6M 43C main engine, 5,400kW, Jake reduction gearbox and Rolls Royce CPP which delivers about 14 knots.

Both newbuilds are registered in their owner's homeport and are Irish  flagged. Of the 44-strong fleet, the  majority of vessels (34) are managed by Arklow Shipping and the balance of vessels (11) are run by Arklow Shipping N.V.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#PORTS & SHIPPING – Arklow Shipping is further expanding its bulker fleet and moving into the market for larger vessels with an order for three ships in South Korea, according to Tradewinds.

The company which is headquartered in the Co. Wicklow port has booked two 35,000-dwt handysize-bulkers and a general cargoship at Daesun Shipbuilding. TradeWinds sources say Arklow is paying a premium for the ships against more competitive pricing from China.

Brokers price the Daesun bulkers at around $25.5m, which compares to similar deals in China at around $22m. As for the general cargoship, she will be delivered in the first half of 2013 and the bulkers in the second half of the year. Arklow previously signed up for a series of 14,000-dwt multipurpose (MPP) vessels at Mokpo, which later went into administration.

The orders were then passed on to Sekwang Shipbuilding only for it also to fall into financial difficulties. Daesun has had its problems too and was delisted from the Seoul Stock Exchange in April as it did not meet the bourse's financial requirements.

The latest order appears to have taken Arklow's owned fleet into the larger-handysize segment. So far it has focussed mainly on bulkers, general-cargo and MPP ships up to 14,000 dwt. It has a fleet of 55 ships including 12 newbuildings, most of which are registered in the Republic of Ireland. Arklow declines to comment on the Daesun order.

Published in Ports & Shipping
# PORTS & SHIPPING - Arklow Forest, the newest vessel of the Arklow Shipping fleet sailed from Greenore to Dublin Port last night to berth at the Alexandra Basin Jetty. The bulk-solid facility specialises in lead and zinc concentrate which arrive by train from the Co. Meath mine owned by Boliden, writes Jehan Ashmore.
 
The 'F' class Arklow Forest was delivered to ASL last month from Spanish shipbuilders Astilleros de Murueta SA in Erandio, near Bilbao, and brings the fleet total close to 45 vessels. During a promotional trade visit to the Basque Country, Irish Ambassador to Spain Justin Harman and Honorary Consul Rocco Caira attended the christening ceremony of the vessel along with Mr. James Tyrell, CEO of Arklow Shipping and management team at the shipyard's facilities on 7 October.

She has a gross tonnage of 2,998 and a single-box hold with two portable bulkheads which can be placed into 10 positions for cargo separation. At 4,800 dwt, ship is certified for the carriage of dangerous goods of IMO Class 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 5.1 and 5.2 (packaged) as well as general bulk cargoes. The main engine is a MAN 6L27/38 2040kW gearbox with CPP, delivering about 12 knots.

The 89m Arklow Forest was one of the 4,500 dwt 'R' class designs but was modified to allow carriage of a further 300 tonnes of cargo. She follows Arklow Field (PHOTO) which entered service this year and to read a report on another F class, Arklow Future click HERE.

Arklow Shipping Ltd with its headquarters in Co. Wicklow operate the fleet which in the majority are Irish registered. Some vessels though are managed through Dutch subsidiary Arklow Shipping Netherland B.V. based in Rotterdam where they are also registered in that port.

Published in Ports & Shipping
The opening this week of a new rail-spur in Dublin Port by Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar T.D.,brings a boost to rail freight competitiveness, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Dublin Port Company invested €1.5m for the 1.6km long rail-spur expansion which links freight-trains directly alongside ships berthed at Ocean Pier. The new facility at the Common User Terminal eliminates the need for loading and unloading trucks at Alexandra Basin East (click MAP)

The minister welcomed "the important investment by Dublin Port Company in its rail network. It will further enhance the attractiveness of the port as a destination for rail-based freight. The project represents a commitment on the part of Dublin Port Company and Iarnród Éireann to customers who want to move goods by rail".

The project took six months to complete and the public private partnership involved Dublin Port Company, Iarnród Éireann and the first customer of the new facility, International Warehousing and Transport (IWT).

IWT is a privately owned Irish logistics company, which already operates freight-trains to Ballina that are expected to increase from 4 to 5 trains per week in each direction as a result of this investment. The rail-operator believes that the service will save up to 5.5million road kilometres annually and reduce CO2 emissions by up to 2,750 tonnes.

The Irish Exporters Association also welcomed the development of the IWT freight operation at the new facility, where increased frequency in services will enhance Ireland's contribution to the European Union's modal shift aspirations from road to rail.

The Common User Terminal is also open to other shipping companies. Existing clients using the lo-lo container terminal operated by Burke Shipping Group through its subsidiary Portroe Stevedores are C2C Lines, APL, Coastal Containers, Evergreen, Gracechurch and OOCL . The terminal also has a ro-ro berth facility where CLdN /Cobelfret operate from on routes to Belgium and The Netherlands. 

In addition to the Dublin-Ballina service the port exports 400,000 tonnes of lead and zinc concentrate from the freight customers Boliden/Tara Mines with 15 trains per week. The facility at Alexandra Basin Jetty is regularly served by vessels from Arklow Shipping Ltd, where the 2011 newbuild Arklow Field (2,998 tonnes) is currently berthed.

Published in Dublin Port

The cargoship Arklow Rebel (2,999 gross tonnes) which loaded scrap metal in Wicklow Port today, is believed to be the largest Arklow Shipping Ltd vessel to dock in the east coast port, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The 7-year old Dutch-built vessel arrived in ballast from Warrenpoint Co. Down around 01.30hrs to berth alongside the town's south quays at the Packet Quay.

Throughout this afternoon there was a steady stream of lorries laden with the scrap-metal which was loaded into the ship's hull by a quayside grabber. Upon completion of loading, the distinctive green hulled Arklow Rebel departed this evening bound for Liverpool.

She is one of nine 'R'class series of ships built by the Dutch shipyard of Barkmeijer Stroobos B.V. and has the following dimensions (90m length X 12m breath X 4m draft). For further vessel characteristics click HERE.

The Irish-flagged vessel is registered at the neighbouring port of Arklow to the south and is part of a fleet of over 40 ships managed by the Tyrrell family.

During the boom years Wicklow port was particularly busy with Scandinavian imports of bundled packaged timber and plasterboard for the construction industry.

The tidal port at the mouth of the River Leitrim also specialises in paper, lead, steel and dry bulk cargoes, principally coal in addition to other general and heavy-lift project cargoes.

For many years the issue of road traffic congestion was finally solved when the Wicklow Port Access and Town Relief Road Scheme was completed in April of last year.

The port access road (1.6km) runs between the Rathnew Road to The Murrough via a bridge that crosses the Broadlough Estuary and over the Dublin-Rosslare railway line.

Published in Ports & Shipping
20th June 2011

Arklow's Asian Newbuilds

Arklow Shipping (ASL) has turned to the Sekwang Shipbuilding, South Korea for three general cargoships according to www.tradewinds.no

An order has been placed for three 14,200-dwt general cargoships at the yard for delivery from late 2012 to early 2013. The deal includes an option for an extra vessel. To read more click here.

Separate to the Asian newbuild programme is the 4,700 gross tonnes Arklow Bridge (click photo) the latest vessel completed for Arklow Shipping B.V. from the Dutch shipyard of Bodewes B.V.

The Co.Wicklow based company was established in 1966 and has a current fleet of over 40 vessels under the Irish, Dutch and Antiguan flags.

Published in Ports & Shipping
There was a 10% growth in employment in the International Shipping Services sector in Ireland last year according to the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO).
In a recent analysis of the sector the information is based from companies that have elected to join the dedicated Irish Tonnage Tax (ITT) scheme, a measure introduced in the 2002 Finance Act.

The act is designed to assist in securing the future of the Irish shipping sector in which five new companies in 2010 entered the scheme, generating an increase of 44% in the number of vessels (from 154 to 177) covered by the Tonnage Tax. Half of these vessels range less than five years old with the total average age at eight years.

In addition the initiative has directly created 314 jobs in 2009 to nearly 350 jobs last year. Most of the employment is in specialised areas such finance,technical management, operations and chartering.

Commenting on the data, IMDO Director Glenn Murphy said "The results are a positive indication that after long periods of decline for the industry that policy support measures have encouraged investment which has led to growth and new employment. We are optimistic that direct employment
in the high value professional shipping services sector could double over the next five years leading to further investment and job creation opportunities"

The majority of Irish-based ship-owning firms operating within the ITT scheme are not entirely reliant on the Irish economy for their daily core revenue streams but are instead employed in the international shipping markets.

In 2010 the global shipping business had total charter trading transactions estimated at $450 billion dollars. It was a year in which the shipping markets continued to be quite volatile with most sectors still recovering from large charter earnings declines over the previous 12 months. Overall Irish firms were quite resilient in their ability to compete last year.

The growth in this sector in Ireland has been driven by established Irish-owned companies Arklow Shipping Ltd (ASL) and the Mainport Group and inward investment has come from D'Amico and Ardmore Shipping. The chemical and products tanker fleet operator located its headquarters to Cork last year and the company is backed by a large US private equity firm.

To read more from the report, you can request a copy by contacting the IMDO by e-mailing [email protected]

Published in Ports & Shipping

Ireland's Offshore Renewable Energy

Because of Ireland's location at the Atlantic edge of the EU, it has more offshore energy potential than most other countries in Europe. The conditions are suitable for the development of the full range of current offshore renewable energy technologies.

Offshore Renewable Energy FAQs

Offshore renewable energy draws on the natural energy provided by wind, wave and tide to convert it into electricity for industry and domestic consumption.

Offshore wind is the most advanced technology, using fixed wind turbines in coastal areas, while floating wind is a developing technology more suited to deeper water. In 2018, offshore wind provided a tiny fraction of global electricity supply, but it is set to expand strongly in the coming decades into a USD 1 trillion business, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). It says that turbines are growing in size and in power capacity, which in turn is "delivering major performance and cost improvements for offshore wind farms".

The global offshore wind market grew nearly 30% per year between 2010 and 2018, according to the IEA, due to rapid technology improvements, It calculated that about 150 new offshore wind projects are in active development around the world. Europe in particular has fostered the technology's development, led by Britain, Germany and Denmark, but China added more capacity than any other country in 2018.

A report for the Irish Wind Energy Assocation (IWEA) by the Carbon Trust – a British government-backed limited company established to accelerate Britain's move to a low carbon economy - says there are currently 14 fixed-bottom wind energy projects, four floating wind projects and one project that has yet to choose a technology at some stage of development in Irish waters. Some of these projects are aiming to build before 2030 to contribute to the 5GW target set by the Irish government, and others are expected to build after 2030. These projects have to secure planning permission, obtain a grid connection and also be successful in a competitive auction in the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).

The electricity generated by each turbine is collected by an offshore electricity substation located within the wind farm. Seabed cables connect the offshore substation to an onshore substation on the coast. These cables transport the electricity to land from where it will be used to power homes, farms and businesses around Ireland. The offshore developer works with EirGrid, which operates the national grid, to identify how best to do this and where exactly on the grid the project should connect.

The new Marine Planning and Development Management Bill will create a new streamlined system for planning permission for activity or infrastructure in Irish waters or on the seabed, including offshore wind farms. It is due to be published before the end of 2020 and enacted in 2021.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE. Is there scope for community involvement in offshore wind? The IWEA says that from the early stages of a project, the wind farm developer "should be engaging with the local community to inform them about the project, answer their questions and listen to their concerns". It says this provides the community with "the opportunity to work with the developer to help shape the final layout and design of the project". Listening to fishing industry concerns, and how fishermen may be affected by survey works, construction and eventual operation of a project is "of particular concern to developers", the IWEA says. It says there will also be a community benefit fund put in place for each project. It says the final details of this will be addressed in the design of the RESS (see below) for offshore wind but it has the potential to be "tens of millions of euro over the 15 years of the RESS contract". The Government is also considering the possibility that communities will be enabled to invest in offshore wind farms though there is "no clarity yet on how this would work", the IWEA says.

Based on current plans, it would amount to around 12 GW of offshore wind energy. However, the IWEA points out that is unlikely that all of the projects planned will be completed. The industry says there is even more significant potential for floating offshore wind off Ireland's west coast and the Programme for Government contains a commitment to develop a long-term plan for at least 30 GW of floating offshore wind in our deeper waters.

There are many different models of turbines. The larger a turbine, the more efficient it is in producing electricity at a good price. In choosing a turbine model the developer will be conscious of this ,but also has to be aware the impact of the turbine on the environment, marine life, biodiversity and visual impact. As a broad rule an offshore wind turbine will have a tip-height of between 165m and 215m tall. However, turbine technology is evolving at a rapid rate with larger more efficient turbines anticipated on the market in the coming years.

 

The Renewable Electricity Support Scheme is designed to support the development of renewable energy projects in Ireland. Under the scheme wind farms and solar farms compete against each other in an auction with the projects which offer power at the lowest price awarded contracts. These contracts provide them with a guaranteed price for their power for 15 years. If they obtain a better price for their electricity on the wholesale market they must return the difference to the consumer.

Yes. The first auction for offshore renewable energy projects is expected to take place in late 2021.

Cost is one difference, and technology is another. Floating wind farm technology is relatively new, but allows use of deeper water. Ireland's 50-metre contour line is the limit for traditional bottom-fixed wind farms, and it is also very close to population centres, which makes visibility of large turbines an issue - hence the attraction of floating structures Do offshore wind farms pose a navigational hazard to shipping? Inshore fishermen do have valid concerns. One of the first steps in identifying a site as a potential location for an offshore wind farm is to identify and assess the level of existing marine activity in the area and this particularly includes shipping. The National Marine Planning Framework aims to create, for the first time, a plan to balance the various kinds of offshore activity with the protection of the Irish marine environment. This is expected to be published before the end of 2020, and will set out clearly where is suitable for offshore renewable energy development and where it is not - due, for example, to shipping movements and safe navigation.

YEnvironmental organisations are concerned about the impact of turbines on bird populations, particularly migrating birds. A Danish scientific study published in 2019 found evidence that larger birds were tending to avoid turbine blades, but said it didn't have sufficient evidence for smaller birds – and cautioned that the cumulative effect of farms could still have an impact on bird movements. A full environmental impact assessment has to be carried out before a developer can apply for planning permission to develop an offshore wind farm. This would include desk-based studies as well as extensive surveys of the population and movements of birds and marine mammals, as well as fish and seabed habitats. If a potential environmental impact is identified the developer must, as part of the planning application, show how the project will be designed in such a way as to avoid the impact or to mitigate against it.

A typical 500 MW offshore wind farm would require an operations and maintenance base which would be on the nearby coast. Such a project would generally create between 80-100 fulltime jobs, according to the IWEA. There would also be a substantial increase to in-direct employment and associated socio-economic benefit to the surrounding area where the operation and maintenance hub is located.

The recent Carbon Trust report for the IWEA, entitled Harnessing our potential, identified significant skills shortages for offshore wind in Ireland across the areas of engineering financial services and logistics. The IWEA says that as Ireland is a relatively new entrant to the offshore wind market, there are "opportunities to develop and implement strategies to address the skills shortages for delivering offshore wind and for Ireland to be a net exporter of human capital and skills to the highly competitive global offshore wind supply chain". Offshore wind requires a diverse workforce with jobs in both transferable (for example from the oil and gas sector) and specialist disciplines across apprenticeships and higher education. IWEA have a training network called the Green Tech Skillnet that facilitates training and networking opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

It is expected that developing the 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy identified in the Government's Climate Action Plan would create around 2,500 jobs in construction and development and around 700 permanent operations and maintenance jobs. The Programme for Government published in 2020 has an enhanced target of 5 GW of offshore wind which would create even more employment. The industry says that in the initial stages, the development of offshore wind energy would create employment in conducting environmental surveys, community engagement and development applications for planning. As a site moves to construction, people with backgrounds in various types of engineering, marine construction and marine transport would be recruited. Once the site is up and running , a project requires a team of turbine technicians, engineers and administrators to ensure the wind farm is fully and properly maintained, as well as crew for the crew transfer vessels transporting workers from shore to the turbines.

The IEA says that today's offshore wind market "doesn't even come close to tapping the full potential – with high-quality resources available in most major markets". It estimates that offshore wind has the potential to generate more than 420 000 Terawatt hours per year (TWh/yr) worldwide – as in more than 18 times the current global electricity demand. One Terawatt is 114 megawatts, and to put it in context, Scotland it has a population a little over 5 million and requires 25 TWh/yr of electrical energy.

Not as advanced as wind, with anchoring a big challenge – given that the most effective wave energy has to be in the most energetic locations, such as the Irish west coast. Britain, Ireland and Portugal are regarded as most advanced in developing wave energy technology. The prize is significant, the industry says, as there are forecasts that varying between 4000TWh/yr to 29500TWh/yr. Europe consumes around 3000TWh/year.

The industry has two main umbrella organisations – the Irish Wind Energy Association, which represents both onshore and offshore wind, and the Marine Renewables Industry Association, which focuses on all types of renewable in the marine environment.

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