Crowley Maritime informed that VT Halter Marine, a VT Systems unit, officially began construction on Taíno, the second of two LNG-powered, combination container – Roll-On/Roll-Off (ConRo) ships for the company’s liner services group.
VT Halter Marine and Crowley entered into a contract for the pair of ships in November 2013 and construction began on the second ship with the first steel plate cutting in Pascagoula, Mississippi, the company informed in a statement.
The Commitment Class ships have been designed to maximize the carriage of 53-foot, 102-inch-wide containers, which offer the most cubic cargo capacity in the trade. The ships will be 219.5 meters long, 32.3 meters wide (beam), have a deep draft of 10 meters, and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tons.
Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 TEUs, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles in an enclosed Ro/Ro garage. The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fueled by liquefied natural gas. The ship design was provided by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime, a leading Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm.
The Jones Act ships will replace Crowley’s towed triple-deck barge fleet, which has served the trade continuously and with distinction since the early 1970s. El Coquí and Taíno are scheduled for delivery second and fourth quarter 2017 respectively.