Friday, August 16, 2013

2 New Fireboats Planned for Long Beach Port

German engineering company Voith says it will provide propellers and turbo couplings for two new fireboats designed by Robert Allan Ltd. for service at the Port of Long Beach.

With a water pumping capacity of more than 40,000 gallons per minute, the vessels, which are are currently being built by the Foss Maritime shipyard in Seattle, are expected to be among the world’s most powerful fireboats.

For each fireboat, the Voith equipment supply includes not only the two VSP couplings, but also two 866 DTL Voith turbo couplings and a twin control stand unit. The control unit’s positioning in the wheelhouse, Voith says, will allow the captain and crew to benefit from a 360 degree panoramic view. Two diesel engines, each with a power of 1,350 kW, drive the VSP.

Both vessels are designed with an overall length of about 108 feet, a beam of 35 feet and a draft of 14 feet, as well as an operating speed of 13 knots. The design is based on the Voith Water Tractor principle, which is already in use at the Port of Los Angeles.

The fireboats are also expected to be equipped with two Voith Schneider Propellers VSP 26GII/165 AE45 each in the forward half of the vessel. Voith says the relatively short VSP blade length of 5.4 feet makes it possible for the fireboats to enter shallow areas of the port without compromising maneuvering safety, allowing the vessels to also support onshore firefighting.

The boats’ water jets are expected to be able to reach heights of up to 236 feet and a distance of up to 580 feet. The vessels are expected to replace the two older fireboats, Liberty and Challenger. Delivery to the Port of Long Beach is scheduled for spring 2014 and autumn 2014 respectively, Voith says.