Home | Contact ST  

Follow ST

Ocean Business


October 2013 Issue

Panama Canal Authority Discusses Tolls, Expansion
The Panama Canal Authority met with the Japanese Shipowners Association, along with several car manufacturers in Japan, as part of ongoing discussions with the vehicle carrier segment on the expansion program's progress and future toll structure.

During the meetings, the Panama Canal provided an update on the expansion program and presented an analysis of the results for potential pricing structure for the car carrier segment. The results considered the feedback received from this group.

Energy Grants Awarded Totaling $5 Million

With 17 awards available, the U.S. Department of Energy gave two grant prizes to Ocean Renewable Power Co. (Portland, Maine), reported Mainebiz. The $5 million in grant money will help the company to advance its TidGen Power System technology.

Nearly $2 million of the grant money will be used to further a system to predict tidal conditions.

Ocean Renewable Power Co. was the first organization to connect an electric grid to a tidal power generator.

Emergency Response Vessels Commissioned, Revenue Grows in Houston Port
The Port of Houston Authority welcomed the first of a new fleet of high-performance emergency response vessels. The vessels will be used to help protect facilities along the Houston Ship Channel, a waterway that is home to the largest petrochemical complex in the United States. The fireboats will help to save lives and property along the 25-mile-long Port of Houston.

In a report to the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority at its monthly meeting, it was stated that monthly operating revenue exceeded $20 million in July. The Port Authority generated $21 million in July operating revenue, surpassing July 2012's performance by $1.4 million or 7 percent. Year-to-date operating revenue of $135 million increased 4 percent, or $6 million.

Port-Related Projects Awarded $104 Million
After evaluating 585 applications for fiscal year 2013 Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants, the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced that 52 transportation projects have been selected to receive approximately $474 million.

Of those, 12 awards totaling about 21.9 percent of total funding are going to projects that aid the movement of goods through United States seaports.

U.S. Department of Energy Grant to Increase PowerBuoy Performance
Ocean Power Technologies Inc. (Pennington, New Jersey) was awarded a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I grant of approximately $150,000 to study advanced control methods for maximizing the wave energy harvesting capability of its PowerBuoy products.

Less than 12 percent of the DOE's SBIR and related Small Business Technology Transfer funding applications were granted in this latest funding round.

NovAtel SPAN to be Integrated into NORBIT Compact Bathymetry Sonar
NORBIT (Trondheim, Norway) has selected NovAtel's (Calgary, Canada) Synchronized Position Attitude Navigation (SPAN) product for integration into the new NORBIT iWBMS Compact Bathymetry Sonar. This combination of technologies produces integrated bathymetry solutions that deliver miniaturization of the form factor.

NovAtel's SPAN technology brings together global navigation satellite system (GNSS) positioning technology and inertial navigation systems (INS). When coupled with the STIM300, a microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) inertial measurement unit (IMU) from Sensonor AS (Horten, Norway), it provides navigation for weight- and size-constrained environments.

FoundOcean Opens Houston Office
FoundOcean (Marlow, England) has opened a new office in Houston, Texas, to support its expansion overseas.

FoundOcean has completed more than 100 offshore projects in the U.S. and Canadian waters for installation contractors. These projects range from compliant tower foundation grouting to deepwater fabric formwork deployments for pipeline repair installations.

Northrop Grumman Upgrades Navigation Equipment
Northrop Grumman Corp. (Falls Church, Virginia) completed an integrated bridge system retrofit for several RoPax ferries operated by Stena Line (Göteborg, Sweden).

Northrop Grumman's Sperry Marine business unit provided a networked suite of scalable navigation products from the VisionMaster FT series, used to form the core of a ship's integrated bridge.

The Stena Superfast VII and Stena Superfast VIII vessels were upgraded with VisionMaster FT navigation radars, a voyage data recorder, and an electronic chart display and information system that provides full control on both bridge wings.

Sea Treasure Recovery Corp. Acquired by Public Company
J.D. Hutt Corp. (Fontana, California) has acquired Sea Treasure Recovery Corp. (Ft. Pierce, Florida), a company focused on shallow-water salvage of sea treasure off Florida's treasure coast.

With the use of modern technology, looking for treasure has become a viable business. The company plans to focus its initial operations on shallow-water recovery, which is less capital intensive than the deep sea recovery, such as Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc.'s (Tampa, Florida) discovery last month of $210 million in silver in the North Atlantic.

Resolve Marine Group and Magone Marine Join Forces
Resolve Marine Group (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) will acquire Magone Marine (Dutch Harbor, Alaska). The result will be a greatly expanded, emergency response and marine services company that combines the long-standing, deep and local expertise of Magone Marine's Alaskan salvors with the extensive resources, personnel and salvage and wreck removal experience of Resolve Marine Group. This newly formed business will be named Resolve-Magone Marine Services, based in Alaska., It coincides with increased vessel traffic in the environmentally sensitive Aleutian Chain.

Salvage of a Damaged Crew Boat in the Gulf of Mexico
Inland Salvage Inc. (Harvey, Louisiana) salvaged a crew boat in the Gulf of Mexico. The vessel began taking on water after striking a structure during offshore operations. Attempts to bring the vessel in under its own power ended when the seas began washing over the bow. All crewmembers safely abandoned the vessel, which was soon set adrift unmanned.

Within 24 hours, the salvage team had the still floating vessel stabilized, secured alongside a crane barge, and began pumping off the 6,500 gallons of diesel fuel remaining in the tanks.

Port of Portland Keeps Ships Moving
Victoria, Australia's Port of Portland has gone live with NetSuite (San Mateo, California) for financials, payroll, project management, asset management and shipping. The result so far is an improvement in the Port of Portland's financials and project management capabilities, as well as streamlining of its ship scheduling process.

Unit Returns from Nine-Month Deployment
The San Pedro, California, Coast Guard Port Security Unit (PSU) 311 returned home from a nine-month deployment to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

During the deployment, PSU 311 maintained a continuous maritime anti-terrorism/force protection presence in the naval defensive sea area of Guantanamo Bay. The unit supported the commander of Joint Task Force Guantanamo.

Enhancements to Marine Group Medical Insurance Program
International Medical Group Inc. (IMG), based in Indianapolis, Indiana, has enhanced its marine group medical insurance program, International Marine Medical Insurance. According to IMG, the enhancements enable shipowners to provide their crew comprehensive coverage for eligible medical expenses, which is important with the enactment of the Maritime Labour Convention.

The Maritime Labour Convention establishes minimum working and living standards for all seafarers on ships. It requires shipowners to provide health protection and medical care to seafarers on board their ships.

MTNW Designs Winch Control Panels for Ferry Terminal
Measurement Technology Northwest (MTNW), based in Seattle, Washington, has designed and built custom winch panels for the Washington State Department of Transportation's Keller Ferry Terminal. As a part of the project, a new ferry will be up and running in 2014.

Max J. Kuney Co. (Spokane, Washington) and Jeamar Winches Inc. (Buffalo, New York) are also partners on the rehabilitation project.

-back to top-

Sea Technology is read worldwide in more than 110 countries by management, engineers, scientists and technical personnel working in industry, government and educational research institutions. Readers are involved with oceanographic research, fisheries management, offshore oil and gas exploration and production, undersea defense including antisubmarine warfare, ocean mining and commercial diving.