The first U.S.-flagged, dual-fuel support vessel is now on the job in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. In February, it began work under a five-year deepwater contract with Shell, says its developer, Harvey Gulf International Marine. When the 302-ft newbuild Harvey Energy set sail from Harvey Gulf’s Port Fourchon support base, it broke ground as the only support vessel in North America fueled by LNG. It is the first of at least six dual-fueled offshore support vessels (OSVs) that Harvey Gulf is having built at the Gulf Coast Shipyard Group (GCSG) in Gulfport, Miss. The first three LNG-fueled newbuilds are under five-year contracts with Shell, says Chad Verret, Harvey Gulf’s executive V.P. of Alaska & LNG Operations.
“We have a contract to build six (dual-fuel OSVs), with four additional options. The Harvey Power will be the second one, and delivery of those will come every four to five months afterward,” he said.
The sail-out of the first vessel came as Harvey Gulf continues constructing the nation’s only LNG bunkering facility designed for refueling support vessels. The first of three LNG storage tanks has been installed, and, Verret said, the remaining two are set for delivery early this summer, which will allow completion of the $25-million fueling station, Fig 1. Each tank can hold 90,000 gal of LNG. “We only have the one vessel operating now, so we aren’t in a big rush to get the other tanks in place, and the facility fully up and running,” Verret said.
With LNG not yet stored at the Port Fourchon base, the 28,000 equivalent gal used to fuel up the Harvey Energy were delivered in three truckloads to the GCSG yard from Clean Energy Fuels’ LNG plant in Willis, Texas, near Houston. From the Mississippi yard, the Harvey Energy proceeded to Port Fourchon for load-out.
Like all the dual-fuel vessels that Harvey Gulf has contracted, the Harvey Energy has a 64-ft beam with a 5,600 deadweight ton carrying capacity. The vessel’s dual-fuel tanks can hold up to 78,000 gal. “Conversions are costly, so I think newbuilds are the way to do this,” Verret said. “That way, you can plan for the tank location and all that, which is especially important for platform supply vessels that require longer durations offshore.”
The Harvey Energy complies with the environmental specifications of the BS “ENVIRO+, Green Passport” notation. “Shell is delighted to be the customer of this innovative vessel,” said John Hollowell, executive V.P., Deep Water, Shell Upstream Americas. “It is a pleasure to partner with Harvey Gulf on this pioneering project.”Related Articles
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