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Displaying items by tag: Navy News

#PORTS & SHIPPING REVIEW - Over the last fortnight Jehan Ashmore has reported from the shipping scene where the Manx-UK winter operated Douglas-Liverpool (Birkenhead) route resumed service.

The port of Warrenpoint on Carlingford Lough was where 18 people suffered injuries arising from a toxic gas leak onboard Arklow Meadow, a dry-cargsship which had arrived with a cargo of grain.

For the sixth year in succession the Irish Travel Trade News Travel Awards voted Irish Ferries as Best Ferry Operator of the Year 2012.

A new book New Life for churches in Ireland, has been published and in which features the former Mariners' Church of Ireland, Dun Laoghaire, now home of the National Maritime Museum of Ireland.

Coliemore Harbour on Dalkey Sound (the medieval port for Dublin) is to undergo a survey to access structural damage on behalf of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council.

The Naval Service was kept busy within the first fortnight of this month with the detention of two foreign registered vessels for alleged breaches of fishing regulations off Castletownbere.

In a first for the Commissioners of Irish Lights and the Naval Service, a joint replenishment at sea (RAS) exercise took place involving the ILV Granuaile and coastal patrol vessel CPV L.É.Ciara (P42).

Killybegs based Sinbad Marine Services have put on sale the SMS Coastal Cat, a 12m survey workboat built locally at the Mooney Boats yard.

In 2013, ten cruise calls are scheduled to visit Dun Laoghaire, bringing around 10,000 visitors and where the 148,528 tonnes giant liner Queen Mary 2 is to make an anchorage call in mid-May.

Dutch owned heavy-lift specialist Abis Shipping are seeking professionals and trainees to work for the expanding company which this month is due delivery of newbuild Abis Dublin.

In an unprecedented move Irish Ferries are to add a third vessel between Dublin-Holyhead during Christmas and New Year periods while Stena Line are to bring back HSS fast-craft operations between Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead.

In what will be a third order for a wind-farm support vessel from Gardline UK has gone to Arklow Marine Services, the 19m newbuild is to be completed in July 2013.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#NAVAL VISIT- Having visited Cork last month, The Royal Navy's River class offshore patrol vessel OPV HMS Mersey (P283) is currently moored in Dublin Port, the ship belongs to a trio of sisterships purchased in a £39m deal, writes Jehan Ashmore.

HMS Mersey along with OPV's Severn and Tyne have for nearly the last decade served the Fishery Protection Squadron while on 'loan' to the Royal Navy. They had operated on a rolling five-year term lease from the shipbuilder-owners, Vosper Thornycroft, now part of BAE Systems.

The lease was due to be renewed in 2013 but rather than face having to pay more to rent the trio of vessels for £7m a year, the UK government signed the contract to buy the ships outright, keeping them in service with the Royal Navy for the next ten years.

The Portsmouth based OPV's known as the 'Cod' squadron are hard-working vessels, where each vessel conducts fishery patrol duties for 275 days annually. In addition they are assigned to perform tasks such as maritime security, counter terrorism, tackling smuggling, fire-fighting and SAR missions.

Published in Naval Visits

#FISHERY DETENTIONS – Yesterday the Naval Service OPV L.E. Aisling (P23) detained an Irish registered vessel approximately 125 nautical miles off the coast of Loop Head, Co. Clare. The detention was in relation to an alleged breach of technical fishing regulations.

The vessel was to be escorted by the OPV to arrive in Castletownbere this morning and then and handed over to the Gardaí.

Also earlier this month, the LPV L.E. Niamh (P52) detained another vessel on the same grounds. On that occasion the detained French registered vessel was likewise fishing in waters off Loop Head and taken under escort to the Co. Cork fishing harbour.

According to Naval Service figures, they have carried out 910 boardings, issued 38 warnings and detained 11 vessels so far this year.

Published in Navy
18th May 2012

Spanish Trawler Detained

#TRAWLER DETENTION - The Naval Service OPV LE Aisling (P23) detained a Spanish registered fishing vessel approximately 175 nautical miles off Mizen Head, Co. Kerry on Wednesday night.

The detention was in relation to an alleged breach of technical fishing regulations and the vessel was escorted by the patrol vessel to Castletownbere and handed over to the Gardai.

So far this year the Naval Service have carried out 498 boardings, issued 25 warnings and detained eight vessels. The total in 2011 was 1,313 boardings and eight detentions of vessels took place off the Irish coast.

Published in Navy

#NAVAL ANCHORAGE – A Royal Navy mine-hunter HMS Bangor (MI09) which took part in Libyan operations last year, anchored overnight in Dublin Bay during the north-easterly gale force winds, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Unlike the majority of vessels which anchor in the south of the bay, she unusually took anchorage north of the main shipping lane for Dublin Port by positioning off Sutton South on Howth Peninsula.

HMS Bangor is a Sandown class mine-hunter and she is due to continue her northbound passage through the Irish Sea to spend Easter at her affiliated namesake town on the shores of Belfast Lough.

Her last call to Bangor was to celebrate Armed Forces Day 2010 and also in that year she called to Dublin, click HERE for that report.

On this occasion she will tell of her role supporting NATO operations off the coast of Libya. During Operation Unified Protector, the mine-hunter's task involved 120 days of non-stop action by scouring miles of sea bed off Libya as the battle between rebels and Colonel Gaddafi raged.

Built in 1999 by Vosper Thorneycroft, Southampton, the glass-reinforced plastic (GRP) ship and her 34 crew undertook the painstaking work. This paid off when the 55m vessel found a 2,400-pound (1000kg) mine and a torpedo lying on the seabed off the port of Tobruk in eastern Libya.

Both were safely destroyed using the ship's Sea Fox system – an underwater drone armed with explosive charges.

HMS Bangor is among seven of her class based at on the Clyde, Scotland. They each displace 600 tonnes and have a range of 2,500 nautical miles. For further details about the class, click HERE.

Published in Navy
As ferry-passengers departed Dublin Port this morning, a flotilla of naval-ships would of been seen as they arrived off the Baily Lighthouse in Dublin Bay bound for the capital, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Leading the flotilla of the four European naval vessels was the Norwegian HNoMS Maaloey (M342), the Polish ORP Flaming (621), the Estonian ENS Tasuja (A 432) and marking the tail-end was the German FGS Überherrn (M1095).

Of the foursome, only ENS Tasuja is the odd one out, she is a diving and support vessel whereas the rest are all a combination of minehunters / minesweepers. ENS Tasuja is from the Lindormen-class and was built in Denmark in 1977. She is 44.5 meters long, has a maximum speed of 14 knots, and has a crew of 28.

HNoMS Maaloey is an Oksøy-class minehunter which has a catamaran hull constructed of  fibre-reinforced plastic which has a very low magnetic signature. She can carry two ROV's and the same number of rigid inflatable boats (RIB).

Above: The Norwegian Navy’s catamaran minehunter HNoMS Maaloey detonates a sea-mine

She is almost identical to the Alta-class leadship HNoMS Alta which provided escort duties during the official state visit of King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway, on board the royal yacht K/S Norge in 2006. She arrived in Irish waters, firstly calling to Dun Laoghaire Harbour, where the royal couple boarded the royal yacht at the East Pier. From there she sailed the short distance across the bay to Dublin Port and her last Irish call was to Cork.

ORP Flaming is a mine countermeasures vessel which operates in minesweeping and minehunting. The vessel is designed to trace such devices and make safe fairways for shipping. She can detect anchored mines 1600m from the ship and bottom mines located 600m below the ship's keel. In addition she can lay mines of six different types.

FGS Überherrn  is a Kulmbach Class minehunter, in service with the German Navy since commissioning in 1989. She was originally built as a Hameln Class (SM 343) minesweeper by STN Systemtechnik Nord, but was converted to the Kulmbach Class. She has an overall length of 54.4m, a width of 9.2m and a draft of 2.5m and a displacement of 635 tonnes. Armament comprises two, four-cell Stinger missile launchers firing FIM-92 Stinger surface-to-air missiles. There are a crew of 37, which includes four officers, 20 petty officers and 13 ratings.

The flotilla are moored two abreast alongside Sir John Rogersons Quay (berth No. 8), which is located on the south quays between the Samuel Beckett and East-Link Bridges. Of the four naval ships, FGS Überherrn is the first to depart on Sunday, the other vessels are to depart on Monday. The vessels will provide an opportunity to view at close quarters a variety of naval architecture design and navies from northern Europe.

Published in Navy
The Dutch Navy's HNLMS De Ruyter (F804), one of four De Zeven Provinciën-class air-defence and command frigates (LCF) docked in Dublin Port this morning, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Displacing 6,050 tonnes the 144m frigate is on a weekend visit to the capital. She has a striking angular lines, this is due to her stealth design technology. Armament consists the bow-mounted Oto Breda 127 mm cannon, vertical launch systems for various missile types, a 'goalkeeper' rapid-fire gun, an Oerlikon 20mm machine gun and a Mk. 46 Torpedo weapon system. At the stern she can carry a Lynx or NH-90 helicopter.

The class have two roles, to command operations and deployment of the Royal Netherlands Navy, the Netherlands Maritime Force (NLMARFOR). In addition they are equipped for air-defence tasks and must be capable of providing protection for an entire fleet.

This dual-role task is the reason that the ships are known as air-defence and command frigates (LCF). The frigates all entered service between 2001-2005 and were built by the Royal Schelde Group, of Flushing, Netherlands. The design also involved participated from Spain and Germany.

Published in Navy
The Naval Service OPV L.E. Roisin (P51) will be open to the public this afternoon (2-4pm) at the North Wall Quay, opposite The National Convention Centre Dublin, which celebrated its first anniversary last month, writes Jehan Ashmore.
L.E. Roisin recently returned from Russia and she berthed for the first time at the North Wall Quay at berth 16A. Normally she would visit Dublin Port by berthing on the south-side banks of the River Liffey along Sir John Rogersons Quay, this applies to other vessel types when mooring within the Dublin 'Docklands'. As such it was most unusual to have a large vessel like L.E Roisin berthing opposite the impressive landmark venue.

It is only in recent years that larger vessels can berth at this stretch of the waterfront following the completion of several major construction projects over the last decade. From the building of the Convention Centre and the Samuel Beckett Bridge which involved using the dredger Hebble Sand (click HERE) during its construction process.

In addition the refurbishment of Spencer Dock sea-lock entrance that for many years was closed is now re-opened. The dock entrance featured in the start of the new television series 'Waterways'-The Royal Canal. Episode two is this Sunday on RTE 1 at 8.30pm.

Aside the 79m L.E. Roisin, the last large vessel to berth close to berth 16A was the French 58m tallship Belem, which was chartered by Alliance Francaise to celebrate their 50th anniversary in 2010 and for the inaugural French Hoist the Sail: Market Festival. The three-masted barque built in 1896 was once also owned by the Sir Arthur Ernest Guinness under the name of Fantôme II.

Situated between where L.E. Roisin is currently berthed and where the Belem had moored, is home to the 'resident' M.V. Cill Airne, a floating bar and restaurant dining venue at berth 16B. Another resident is the former lightship Kittiwake at berth 17B, though sited much further downstream at the end of North Wall Quay, opposite the O2 Arena and next to the East-Link Bridge.

There is a fourth resident, again berthed on the north quays, though the Jeanie Johnston unlike her counterparts is moored closer to the city-centre at Custom House Quay. Apart from yachts, leisure-craft and occasional private motor-yachts using the Dublin City Moorings, she is the only vessel to permanently occupy a berth between Samuel Beckett Bridge and the Sean O'Casey foot-bridge.

Published in Navy
The Royal Navy's HMS Portland (F79) a 4,900 tonnes displacement Type 23 Duke –class frigate built as the last of fifteen such vessels a decade ago is on a weekend visit to Dublin Port, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Launched in 1999 at the shipyard of the then Marconi Marine at Scotstown on the Clyde, she then entered service two year later. During her contractor's sea trials she achieved a top speed of 30.8 knots and claims this as a record across the entire class.

She measures 133m (436ft) long and on a beam of 16.1m (52.9ft) and has a crew compliment of 185 in total. An array of highly sophisticated arnament is packed on board in addition she can convey a Lynx helicopter. Propulsion is derived from a combined use of diesel and gas (CODLAG) .To read more about the penultimate Type 23 class and her sisters click HERE

Published in Navy
8th September 2011

Roisin Returns from Russia

The Naval Service OPV L.E. Roisin (P51) arrived into Cork Harbour this morning after completing her foreign trade deployment to Finland, the Russian Federation and several Baltic states, writes Jehan Ashmore.
L.E. Roisin called to Helsinki, St. Petersburg, Tallinn and Riga. Her tour was organised by several government departments – defence, enterprise, trade and employment and foreign affairs. The Irish Embassy in these countries in conjunction with Enterprise Ireland and Board Bia hosted events on board to promote trade, employment, enterprise and products in the region. To read more click HERE.

In addition the OPV delivered medical supplies on her visit to Riga, the Latvian capital, where the cargo was transported in aid of the Chernobyl Children's Project based in Belarus.

Published in Navy
Page 1 of 2

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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