Marseille-based San Giorgio del Porto and sister yard Chantier Naval de Marseille complement each other when it comes to cruise and ferry refit and conversion work
Repair and conversion shipyard San Giorgio del Porto (SGdP) and sister yard Chantier Naval de Marseille (CNM) have worked on a clutch of cruise and ferry projects since the start of this year, where one of the main focuses has been greener and more fuel-efficient operations.
The sister shipyards call themselves a ‘one-stop-solution’ for repair, conversion and refitting operations in the shipping industry, providing services not only to passenger ships but also to offshore vessels and LNG carriers. While they are independent companies, they work together and complement each other.
The shipyards’ commercial manager Manolo Cavaliere singled out the yards’ 90-year history plus the wide range of facilities, including a drydock 465 m long by 85 m wide, as being important reasons as to why “even the most complex project” can be carried out and any type of vessel can be handled.
Since the start of 2018, CNM has carried out four cruise ship drydocks on Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Star, Costa Cruises’ Costa Victoria, and AIDA Cruises’ AIDAbella and AIDAaura.
Over on the ferry side, drydocks have been completed on Corsica Linea’s Pascal Paoli, Vizzavona and Jean Nicoli ships, and GNV’s Majestic and Excelsior ferries.
SGdP completed several projects for GNV (Fantastic and Superba) and Algerie Ferries (El Djazair II and Tariq Ibn Ziyad).
Mr Cavaliere commented “The activities performed were repair and refurbishment operations, specific works on pods and modifications for compliance with new rules or greener/fuel-efficient operations (scrubber installations). These works have been a routine part of the yard’s operations for this year.”
A major focus of CNM is using green and energy efficient technology. To this end, it is working with a new technology used for blasting and coating hulls, developed by Hubert Palfinger Technologies. Hull Treatment Carrier (HTC) is now available at CNM for all repair and refit projects. It is the first automated system for maintaining ship surfaces.
The HTC system for surface treatment and colour application includes a range of benefits. Mr Cavaliere explained that washing, blasting and coating hulls usually means three standalone processes, resulting in “hundreds of man-hours”. HTC can simultaneously blast and coat the hull, maximising time efficiency and minimising costs for shipowners and shipyards.
The system uses ultra-high-pressure water blasting of up to 3,000 bars, with an automated application of up to 1,200 m per hour per HTC, meaning up to 30% less coating is needed.
The automated application reduces the roughness depth of the vessel with surface preparation and consistent coating. Mr Cavaliere added “Automation helps us report more accurate results, more quickly. These faster and more accurate results will improve material consumption and environment.”
He added that compared to common manual application techniques, with HTC’s automatic surface preparation and coating, an “exact and uniform colour composition” can be achieved. “This results in reduced consumption of the colour coating as well as a smoother application of the antifouling, providing a less rough surface, which ultimately leads to fuel savings when the ship is in operation.”
Looking ahead to passenger ship refit trends, Mr Cavaliere said “For the last two years, drydock time schedules are shorter. Requests for special projects are higher because of ballast water treatment and scrubber installations and requests for energy saving systems.”
He added “The cruise sector is constantly changing, every year it is launching more modern ships, the largest and most technologically advanced, with particular regard to environmental aspects – the new LNG cruise vessels will be a reality.”
CNM handled the largest cruise ships, while SGdP is more focused on special projects and ships of up to 260 m in length.