Sharjah-based Albwardy Damen has received an award for the innovative design of its new Damen Multibuster 8020 shallow draught, multi-purpose vessel. The award was presented at the Mastech international marine technical conference, held on board the QE2 floating hotel in the UAE.
Albwardy Damen has been developing the Multibuster 8020 offshore workboat for the past two years in close consultation with a number of oil majors, operators and potential clients in the Gulf region. Over that time the size of the vessel has grown, as clients have sought additional capability. While the Multibuster 8020 is 80 m in length, making it the largest vessel to be built at Albwardy Damen Sharjah to date, it will also be available in 60m and 70m versions.
Its draught of just 3.5 m is considered exceptional for a vessel of this size and makes it ideal for the shallow waters of the Arabian Gulf. It also stands out for having a deck strength between the stern roller and the anchor handling and tow winch, 800 m² in total, of 10 or even 20 tonnes per square metre as standard, in comparison to the usual 3 to 5 tonnes. The rationale for this is that it saves time and expense by making the deck ready to take any equipment or fulfil any operation without further modification, whether it be the installation of a walk-to-work gangway, a heavy crane or a 14 m cable carousel.
Albwardy Damen has taken the innovation a stage further by specifying a corresponding cofferdam below decks. This protection means that steel cutting and welding on the working deck above can be carried out without draining and or degassing the fuel tanks first, an operation that can take several days, and so further speeds up the mobilisation of new equipment. Special attention has also been given to the working deck sides. These are free of obstacles over the full deck length, resulting in maximum operational flexibility for the end-user.
The diesel-electric, DP2 classed vessel is outfitted with a retractable azimuth bow thruster that results in low noise and vibration levels under DP conditions and good fuel economy when standing-by. Additional options include propulsion alternatives that can deliver a bollard pull from 45 to 95 tonnes, with the higher ranges aimed at potential clients who have indicated that they would use the vessel for towing and anchor handling.
“At Damen we have been extremely successful with shallow draft workboats, notably our Shoalbuster and Multicat ranges,” says Pascal Slingerland, Regional Director Middle East for Damen. “These boats were originally mainly used in the dredging industry but have since become very popular in the oil and gas industry as well. The new Multibuster is a combination of the functionality found on both Shoalbusters and Multicats, but on a much larger and even more versatile, shallow draught workboat.”