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Ocean Business


March 2014 Issue

BioSonics Appoints Global Sales Agency
BioSonics Inc. (Seattle, Washington) appointed SUBSEA 20/20 Inc. (Seattle) as their exclusive worldwide sales and marketing agency. SUBSEA 20/20 was recently founded by Eric Munday, former BioSonics director of sales and marketing. The equipment catalog for SUBSEA 20/20 will also represent select manufacturers of related and complementary underwater monitoring equipment. Equipment integration will be a primary area of focus for BioSonics and SUBSEA 20/20.

Panama Canal New Lock Project to Resume
The Panama Canal Authority sent Grupo Unidos por el Canal S.A. (GUPC), based in Panama, Panama, a counterproposal that will enable the continuation of work in the new locks project. The proposal does not increase the contract price or accept any of the claims, which must be presented following the mechanisms established in the contract. It is based on the parties contributing financial resources to resume work as soon as possible.

This proposal, subject to the revision and approval of the parties, sets specific dates for GUPC's delivery of the lock gates and the completion of the works.

Alliance to Support Nontank Vessels
The Marine Spill Response Corp. (MSRC), based in Herndon, Virginia, and Alaska Maritime Prevention and Response Network announced a 'strategic alliance' to support nontank vessels in meeting new federal regulations and enhancing oil spill response in western Alaska and Prince William Sound.

As a part of the alliance, the Network will join the Marine Preservation Association (MPA). Through its membership in MPA, the Network and its participants will have access to MSRC's resources.

AEP River Operations Start Liquids Transport
AEP River Operations (St. Louis, Missouri) began operations of its liquids division with receipt of the first of 20 tank barges. The addition of tank barges to the company's fleet will allow AEP River Operations to transport liquid commodities, including petrochemicals and agricultural chemicals.

AEP River Operations's liquid barge fleet is being constructed by Jeffboat (Jeffersonville, Indiana). Each barge will have a capacity of 11,000 barrels and measure 200 feet long and 35 feet wide.

Vigor Set to Buy Seward Ship's Drydock
The owner of Seward Ship's Drydock (Seward, Alaska) has signed a letter of intent to sell the assets of the shipyard company to Vigor Industrial (Portland, Oregon). The companies are currently negotiating the terms of the potential sale and expect it to be finalized after completion of environmental, financial and business due diligence. Seward Ship's Drydock operates as a full service shipyard and drydock facility. Under the terms of the tentative deal, the Seward shipyard would join Vigor as a subsidiary of the company's Vigor Alaska subsidiary.

Radar Enhances Safety of Life At Sea
Kelvin Hughes Marine Systems's (London, England) SharpEye radar is now in continuous use on the world's fastest ferry, operating between Argentina and Uruguay.

The ferry, named Francisco after the Argentinian-born Pope Francis, carries up to 1,024 passengers and crew together with 150 cars on a daily basis between Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Montevideo, Uruguay. It makes the 116-nautical-mile journey along the River Plate estuary in about two hours and 12 minutes. Francisco is 99 meters in length and features catamaran technology. Powered by gas turbine engines using LNG as the primary fuel, the vessel has a service speed in excess of 50 knots.

TRACE International, DA-Desk Form Alliance
TRACE International (Annapolis, Maryland) and DA-Desk FZ-LLC (Dubai, United Arab Emirates) announced a partnership to create greater transparency in the shipping industry. The partnership pairs TRACE, which calls itself the worldwide leader in setting the standard for global compliance due diligence, with DA-Desk, the largest independent provider of port cost management services. The alliance enables port agents and suppliers registered with DA-Desk to receive preferential pricing for TRACEcertification and promote their commitment to compliance.

KVH Ships 4,000th TracPhone System
KVH Industries Inc. (Middletown, Rhode Island) shipped its 4,000th TracPhone terminal for the mini-VSAT broadband network, adding more than 1,000 units in the past year and extending the company's market share lead in maritime VSAT service. In 2013, the network delivered 370 terabytes of data and 23 million voice minutes to an extensive array of vessels, such as tankers and containerships traveling the world's major shipping routes, fleets in remote fishing grounds, offshore supply vessels in major oil and gas regions, Coast Guard cutters patrolling the U.S. coastline, and luxury yachts on coastal and offshore voyages.

Ingalls Shipbuilding Purchases Former 84 Lumber Property
Huntington Ingalls Industries's (Newport News, Virginia) Ingalls Shipbuilding division has purchased property in Moss Point where the former 84 Lumber was located.

The 12.26-acre property will be used mainly for warehousing. Two large buildings built in 2007 offer more than 58,000 square feet of storage, and there are three storage sheds, each with 12,000 square feet of space. Modifications will be incorporated into the current layout, and the plan is to have the area functional by the fall.

Sea-Bird Scientific, Laurel Technologies Expand Relationship
Sea-Bird Scientific (Halifax, Canada) announced that Laurel Technologies (Beijing, China) will represent the Sea-Bird Scientific product line in China. 'Laurel Technologies has successfully represented Sea-Bird Electronics in China for many years,' said Dr. Tom Mitchell, Sea-Bird Scientific ocean research business director, 'their depth of technical expertise has been instrumental in our clients in China getting world class data quality from Sea-Bird Scientific instruments. The ocean research community in China will now work with Laurel Technologies to support WET Labs and optical and biogeochemical instruments and systems.'

Xchange Sensor Heads Calibrated in Europe
AML Oceanographic (Sidney, Canada) has partnered with OSIL (Havant, England) to offer Xchange sensor recalibration services at OSIL's facilities in the UK. With a European recalibration center, field-swappable sensor heads become even more convenient for European users of oceanographic instrumentation. OSIL is expected to begin accepting Xchange sensor heads for recalibration by March 1, 2014.

Icebreaking Cutter Completes Resupply
Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star successfully completed its breakout of McMurdo Science Station in Antarctica in support of Operation Deep Freeze. The cutter assisted by breaking a navigable shipping lane through 12 miles of ice in McMurdo Sound, encountering ice up to 10 feet in thickness.

The shipping channel through the ice created by Polar Star was used by the tanker ship Maersk Peary to deliver approximately 3.5 million U.S. gallons of fuel to McMurdo residents.

Lumishore Partners With GOST on Security
Lumishore Ltd. (Swansea, Wales) has partnered with GOST (Global Ocean Security Technologies), based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for enhanced boat monitoring solutions. The GOST NT-Evolution 2.0 utilizes the Inmarsat satellite network to provide global arm/disarm and relay control over satellite from anywhere in the world except the extreme poles, with the reassurance of a battery backup. Vessels equipped with the Lumishore Underwater Single Color LED lights and the GOST NT-Evolution 2.0 SM will have two-way communication via satellite.

Ocean Carriers and NVOCCs Select Descartes Solution
Descartes Systems Group (Waterloo, Canada) announced that ocean carriers and nonvessel operating common carriers (NVOCCs) have selected Descartes' Japan Ocean Advanced Filing Rule (AFR) solution to help comply with Japan's new advanced cargo security initiative, which takes effect March 10, 2014.

Japan's AFR mandate requires ocean carriers and NVOCCs to electronically submit data to Japan Customs on maritime container cargo intended for a port in Japan no later than 24 hours before departure of the vessel from the port of loading.

XPRIZE Launches $2 Million Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE
XPRIZE (Culver City, California) has launched its next major competition: the $2 million Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE. The Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE aims to spur global innovators to develop accurate and affordable ocean pH sensors that will ultimately transform our understanding of ocean acidification, one of the gravest problems associated with the rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide. This is the second collaboration between Wendy Schmidt and XPRIZE and furthers the commitment by both to address the grand challenge of ocean health.

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