'5 de Novembre' - A New 42m Ro-Ro Ferry From Cheoy Lee Hitches a Ride to Panama

Nov 28, 2008

Unlike the recent series of eight Cheoy Lee-built Z-tech 6000 tugs for the Panama Canal Authority that have made the 10,000nm Pacific crossing from Hong Kong to Panama, this open-bowed, flatbottomed vessel, powered by only a pair of 298kW Caterpillar diesels, required transportation aboard a larger vessel.

At 42 metres in length on a 14-metre beam, the Ro-Ro ferry was fairly large cargo for the 100-metre by 20-metre carrier, BigLift Shipping’s ‘Traveller’. With a lightship weight of 370 tonnes, loading of the Ro-Ro vessel was an involved process requiring both of the carrier’s 275-tonne cranes, working in unison, and continual ballasting of ‘Traveller’ to maintain level trim during the operation. At 16 knots, the Pacific crossing took just under one month, and the Ro-Ro entered service shortly after arrival.

The Ro-Ro is ideally suited to its current operating environment, plying the narrow and protected waters of the Panama canal, with a journey time of approximately three minutes. The roll-on, roll-off design affords excellent efficiency, with no need for the vessel (nor the vehicles that it carries) to ever turn around.

The vessel does, however, possess exceptional manoeuvrability for operating in confined spaces. The azimuthing Schottel SRP 170 propulsion units, coupled to twin Caterpillar 3406 diesel engines, provide thrust through 360 degrees. Spacing between the propulsion units is also very wide, providing rapid and responsive turning, even with low engine power. The propellers are located in recessed pockets in the hull, one in the forward starboard corner of the vessel, the other in the aft port corner.

Up to 24 lorries can be carried on deck. A small lounge and two heads are available for 20 passengers, and there is also a crew galley, above which are the chief engineer and master’s office, all within the structure to one side of the vessel. Interestingly, the vessel is designed with a permanent list, although this is corrected when vehicles are loaded. The wheelhouse is on the cross member over the centre of the vessel.

The vessel is constructed to Bureau Veritas class, with the notation: BV +Hull +Machinery, Ro-Ro cargo ship (Coastal Area).

Cheoy Lee reports a further 54 vessels of various types and ranging from 14 to 54 metres currently on its order books.

For further information contact:
Cheoy Lee Shipyards, Hong Kong.
PH: +852 2307 6333, FX: +852 2307 5577,
Email: info@cheoylee.com, Web: www.cheoylee.com












Page 36, Work Boat World November 2008