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HONFLEUR - New Build for Ouistreham Route - CANCELLED


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4 minutes ago, Fine Whine said:

@tarbyonline is reporting on his excellent NI Ferry site that Honfleur is to be towed within weeks from Flensburg to an as yet unnamed port - https://www.niferry.co.uk/honfleur-to-leave-fsg-shipyard-under-tow-within-weeks/. At least things are starting to move forward in this debacle, scrapping her just made no sense whatsoever and someone is going to eventually step in and nab themselves a bargain. I have a feeling that greater clarity on the 'B' word negotiations will be needed before anyone takes the plunge though....unless of course Ed's Tasmanian hypothesis beomes reality.

Chris

 

Yes, there has been many sources reporting the same yet no one knows where Honfleur is going. Keep an eye out on AIS for a large tug heading to Flensburg in the next few days.

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That may well be the view being presented for now, but things can change. My point being that until the several thousand tons of hull sat floating actually have a decided future, I wouldn't 100% disco

I get the impression we've put more hours into this thread than the German shipyard have into the real ship. Ed. 

And don't forget that the ship's real achievement was the production of zero CO2 emissions, zero waste water and zero satisfied passengers for the whole of the 2019 summer season. Ed. 

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2 minutes ago, nick hall said:

So the guessing game begins.

Could anyone much more knowledgeable than me give some idea of which yards would be in a position to finish her.

That assumes it's to a yard to finish her... I think, as Tony has suggested, we're just going to have to wait and watch.

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8 minutes ago, nick hall said:

So the guessing game begins.

Could anyone much more knowledgeable than me give some idea of which yards would be in a position to finish her.

The first question I'd want to know is whether the gas propulsion system is removable and if space within the hull exisits for conventional fuel tanks. If that's not possible then the crane and external tank setup, which hasn't yet been installed from what we can see in the photos, will have to be adopted by a future buyer which might limit her attractiveness. Ed

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It may not go far, I imagine that the new FSG is charging for the mooring and it is just going somewhere cheaper.

Re the comments about Siem paying FSG for the ship, any payments would be to the administrators of the old FSG which owed money to Siem and I would have thought that Siem would have some security for the loans, I prefer the Siem statements to a newspaper !

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4 hours ago, Cabin-boy said:

The first question I'd want to know is whether the gas propulsion system is removable and if space within the hull exisits for conventional fuel tanks. If that's not possible then the crane and external tank setup, which hasn't yet been installed from what we can see in the photos, will have to be adopted by a future buyer which might limit her attractiveness. Ed

There's no need to remove it, the fuel cells are industry standard available all over the world.

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5 minutes ago, jonno said:

There's no need to remove it, the fuel cells are industry standard available all over the world.

Thanks, but would another prospective customer want to go down the crane route for fuelling the vessel? BF stated it was a revolutionary idea at the time, a first for the ferry industry, but very different from previous solutions. Seeing as the crane doesn't even exist, would another yard be allowed to build and fit it if they don't own the design rights? Ed. 

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2 hours ago, Cabin-boy said:

Thanks, but would another prospective customer want to go down the crane route for fuelling the vessel? BF stated it was a revolutionary idea at the time, a first for the ferry industry, but very different from previous solutions. Seeing as the crane doesn't even exist, would another yard be allowed to build and fit it if they don't own the design rights? Ed. 

It's new to ferries yes but it's a very simple process. The crane is more like a framed lifting hoist which again isn't particularly specialised - the process is more like the marriage of existing, well practiced engineering. The external re gassing tank on the outside deck is no different to those aboard Viking Grace.

As expected BF have showcased the set up, with decent marketing you'd expect that but the whole process has to be simple as it will be permanently exposed to every type of weather.

It's also probably cheaper to continue with what's existing rather than replace it all as they're not gas/diesel/electric like FjordLine, the propulsion is gas/electric so the plant would need extensive & expensive work to be reconfigured for diesel plus deck 1 would need to be redesigned in order to accommodate fuel tanks.

Personally Ed I have a feeling she'll end up with either Stena or DFDS in or around the Baltic where LNG facilities are plentiful... I'll bet you a catering sack of P.G pyramids that the work will be done in one of three places, Gdansk, Fossen or Ulstein. 

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Instead it would be relatively simple to fix the storage tanks in place, alter the pipe work and add refuelling points either side of the ship, then refuel from shore.

There might be some extra infrastructure (pump) needed shoreside. However I could see 'Honfleur' LNG tankers with pump and hose on board to connect up reducing that need. The LNG tanker would pull up alongside, pump it's contents onboard the ship. Once empty, disconnect and drive off, replaced by next tanker as required. All while the boarding at the same time.

Maybe better to use shoreside infrastructure as on connection per fuelling to ship with 4 connections to pump on dock. Bit of thought / research needed there.

The crane design always seemed a bit clunky, trying to fit an idea into a space. 
   - Adds additional failure modes to fuelling operation
   - More equipment that needs training, manning, points of error
   - Unloading the empties requires three point turn blocking the vehicle deck reducing loading efficiencies

Overall seems more reliable and simpler to operate.

If NASA are planning to do this for two propellants (Methane [pure LNG] & LOX), between two rockets travelling at 17,600 mph in orbit, I cannot see it being that difficult to do for one propellant in the relatively comparatively benign climate of Europe. Maybe the new owners could apply to NASA for a grant to research this.

Edited by Shipping Forecast
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6 hours ago, jonno said:

the plant would need extensive & expensive work to be reconfigured for diesel plus deck 1 would need to be redesigned in order to accommodate fuel tanks.

That's what I assumed. 

6 hours ago, jonno said:

Personally Ed I have a feeling she'll end up with either Stena or DFDS in or around the Baltic where LNG facilities are plentiful... I'll bet you a catering sack of P.G pyramids that the work will be done in one of three places, Gdansk, Fossen or Ulstein. 

Risky, for me at least. And where am I going to find a sack of teabags over here? What will be interesting is to see how much extra cash needs pumping in to get her finished and how long it takes. 

 

6 hours ago, Shipping Forecast said:

The crane design always seemed a bit clunky, trying to fit an idea into a space. 
   - Adds additional failure modes to fuelling operation
   - More equipment that needs training, manning, points of error
   - Unloading the empties requires three point turn blocking the vehicle deck reducing loading efficiencies

Exactly. If it was to prove the concept and perhaps get additional funding for the patented idea then keep it, particularly if other designers where hoping to evaluate its efficiency. But if it was just designed to suit Total's local delivery system then an alternative might be simpler. 

Of course, if BF intend to get her back at some point then it needs to stay. 

Ed. 

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15 hours ago, TonyMWeaver said:

Yes, there has been many sources reporting the same yet no one knows where Honfleur is going. Keep an eye out on AIS for a large tug heading to Flensburg in the next few days.

Sometimes strange things happen to vessels under tow , like accidently becoming an artificial reef .

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1 minute ago, ZinedineBiscan said:

Have BF dodged a bullet on this one?  Given how difficult their finances are, paying out for a bespoke ferry was the last thing they needed. Granted, they'll have some some hefty abort costs but from reading they've walked away relatively unscathed.

Did they not make payments throughout the process though? At the very least surely a fairly big deposit?

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4 hours ago, Cabin-boy said:

Exactly. If it was to prove the concept and perhaps get additional funding for the patented idea then keep it, particularly if other designers where hoping to evaluate its efficiency. But if it was just designed to suit Total's local delivery system then an alternative might be simpler. 

It already a proven patented design. The fuel supplier is incidental as all of them use the tankers and have done for many years, they're not specially designed for the process... It's simply a framed chilled tank which sits on an HGV trailer.

FSG fitted the same refuelling method designed by another company to a RoRo 5 years ago.

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2 hours ago, Cabin-boy said:

Of course, if BF intend to get her back at some point then it needs to stay. 

Even if BF had her back, I would be questioning the current fuelling (crane) design. Searoad Mersey II has drive on and lock into place LNG fuel tanks, which is what I thought Honfleur was going to have initially.

Then I saw the contraption on the back and first thought was that will be interesting ... 🤔

2 hours ago, Cabin-boy said:

Exactly. If it was to prove the concept and perhaps get additional funding for the patented idea then keep it, particularly if other designers where hoping to evaluate its efficiency. But if it was just designed to suit Total's local delivery system then an alternative might be simpler. 

The whole system with crane seems like a forced idea, someone managed to convince BF to go along with it. I wonder how much the innovative crane system added to the cost and build issues?

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1 hour ago, Shipping Forecast said:

Even if BF had her back, I would be questioning the current fuelling (crane) design. Searoad Mersey II has drive on and lock into place LNG fuel tanks, which is what I thought Honfleur was going to have initially.

Then I saw the contraption on the back and first thought was that will be interesting ... 🤔

The whole system with crane seems like a forced idea, someone managed to convince BF to go along with it. I wonder how much the innovative crane system added to the cost and build issues?

Cranes have been around for many years now in all shapes and sizes, what's the issue?

I really don't know what the problem is or why the fuelling system is being targeted as some kind of rubber band built experiment. 

The system designed by Chantiers is tried and tested, is very simple to use and has evolved from their hydrogen fuel cell set up. They are now beginning to sell it to cruise ship operators.

It's not a contraption and there was no one sent to BF who managed to convince them to go along with it.

If Stena fitted it you'd all be shouting WOW what a wonderful forward thinking company you are!

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2 hours ago, Shipping Forecast said:

Even if BF had her back, I would be questioning the current fuelling (crane) design. Searoad Mersey II has drive on and lock into place LNG fuel tanks, which is what I thought Honfleur was going to have initially.

Then I saw the contraption on the back and first thought was that will be interesting ... 🤔

The whole system with crane seems like a forced idea, someone managed to convince BF to go along with it. I wonder how much the innovative crane system added to the cost and build issues?

It wasn't forced, it was just that no LNG infrastructure existed at the time of conception whatsoever within BF's network. Was just too far off. It would be different if it was starting over now....

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14 minutes ago, jonno said:

Cranes have been around for many years now in all shapes and sizes, what's the issue?

Cranes have been around for years. It does not make them the answer. Here they add complexity where there need not be any plus introducing what can be one of the highest hazard machines to operate. Either be mobile and drive on / park and connect, or refuel from ship / shore, both as you say tried, tested and proven.

As before, why I do not like this particular crane design
  - Adds additional failure modes to fuelling operation
   - More equipment that needs training, manning, points of error
   - Loading / unloading blocks the vehicle deck reducing loading efficiencies

Goes against the best engineering - "keeping it simple with minimum parts". University tutor

33 minutes ago, jonno said:

It's not a contraption and there was no one sent to BF who managed to convince them to go along with it.

I would like to see the reasoning for going with a complicated, sorry innovative, fuelling system when there are as you say well proven designs that are simpler. 

14 minutes ago, jonno said:

I really don't know what the problem is or why the fuelling system is being targeted as some kind of rubber band built experiment. 

The system designed by Chantiers is tried and tested, is very simple to use and has evolved from their hydrogen fuel cell set up. 

None of it is rubber band, but over complicated with the crane. 

LNG is great, using basically mobile gas bottles better, should have been bought in years ago. We could have progressed to implementing further technological improvements. But that is another conversation. 

The €90m spend on scrubbers, could that money have been put to better use converting ships to better fuels? If the hull has life left with reasonable maintenance costs then why not. Could the cost of Honfleur been put towards converting the whole fleet? I don't have the figures to do the full analysis but I suspect back of envelope there would be a case for at least some. I would be genuinely interested to hear what you think.

35 minutes ago, jonno said:

If Stena fitted it you'd all be shouting WOW what a wonderful forward thinking company you are!

Since quoting me, personally I am completely agnostic to who does does what. Don't give a monkeys. (The rest is in general and not a direct reply to Jonno).

I would be shouting WOW if we (humans / shipping / medicine / society / fill in the blank ...) really innovate, making real progress and moves all of us forward. Not the pseudo marketing progress like the smart phone updates each year. Therefore BF using LNG is a brilliant step in the right direction and every shipping company, even better.

But why stop there, save the money on the crane system and install air lubrication, partial electrification to reduce port emissions further or whatever brings benefit, makes life easier and reduces costs (and ticket prices). I see the cruising industry moving forward much faster on this, all the main companies converting.

If people think the crane is the best thing since sliced bread, that's great - vive la différence. Life is too much of homogenous pastiche of marketeers blandness anyway.

In general, what I don't like is people wedded to 'always done like that' without questioning why? The answer maybe the same but more often than not there improvements that can be made. 

As animals we are generally afraid of change, but one of my favourite quotes is

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”  Upton Sinclair

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53 minutes ago, Shipping Forecast said:

Cranes have been around for years. It does not make them the answer. Here they add complexity where there need not be any plus introducing what can be one of the highest hazard machines to operate. Either be mobile and drive on / park and connect, or refuel from ship / shore, both as you say tried, tested and proven.

As before, why I do not like this particular crane design
  - Adds additional failure modes to fuelling operation
   - More equipment that needs training, manning, points of error
   - Loading / unloading blocks the vehicle deck reducing loading efficiencies

Goes against the best engineering - "keeping it simple with minimum parts". University tutor

I would like to see the reasoning for going with a complicated, sorry innovative, fuelling system when there are as you say well proven designs that are simpler. 

None of it is rubber band, but over complicated with the crane. 

LNG is great, using basically mobile gas bottles better, should have been bought in years ago. We could have progressed to implementing further technological improvements. But that is another conversation. 

The €90m spend on scrubbers, could that money have been put to better use converting ships to better fuels? If the hull has life left with reasonable maintenance costs then why not. Could the cost of Honfleur been put towards converting the whole fleet? I don't have the figures to do the full analysis but I suspect back of envelope there would be a case for at least some. I would be genuinely interested to hear what you think.

Since quoting me, personally I am completely agnostic to who does does what. Don't give a monkeys. (The rest is in general and not a direct reply to Jonno).

I would be shouting WOW if we (humans / shipping / medicine / society / fill in the blank ...) really innovate, making real progress and moves all of us forward. Not the pseudo marketing progress like the smart phone updates each year. Therefore BF using LNG is a brilliant step in the right direction and every shipping company, even better.

But why stop there, save the money on the crane system and install air lubrication, partial electrification to reduce port emissions further or whatever brings benefit, makes life easier and reduces costs (and ticket prices). I see the cruising industry moving forward much faster on this, all the main companies converting.

If people think the crane is the best thing since sliced bread, that's great - vive la différence. Life is too much of homogenous pastiche of marketeers blandness anyway.

In general, what I don't like is people wedded to 'always done like that' without questioning why? The answer maybe the same but more often than not there improvements that can be made. 

As animals we are generally afraid of change, but one of my favourite quotes is

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”  Upton Sinclair

A companies' apparent love of all things green rarely extends to their wallet without regulations, or media shaming (both heavily in play with BF). I am sure that most would still burn coal without the two aforementioned factors. 

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26 minutes ago, hf_uk said:

It wasn't forced, it was just that no LNG infrastructure existed at the time of conception whatsoever within BF's network. Was just too far off. It would be different if it was starting over now....

Obviously my I have not be clear in my thoughts with two similar replies 🙁

What I was attempting to suggest is there are simpler alternatives in use, to having the whole crane system. Not the LNG, just the crane. 

To implement the crane system seems like an idea looking for home rather than a solution to the issue. For example Searoad Mersey II has LNG tank storage on open air part of the top vehicle deck. Drive on, put in place, lock and connect. To unload do the reverse, simple. No time used (wasted?) lifting, stowing etc. Wagons are parked directly in front of the storage looking at videos.

If mounting the tank on the upper deck appeals, how about reducing crane ops by lifting directly through the deck into position. Reduce the crane movement by 1 degree, save time in travelling back and forth. Latching support / locking mechanism would be needed but also in regular use so no show stopper.

All I am saying is that there are alternatives to the seductive Honfleur fuelling video.

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5 minutes ago, hf_uk said:

A companies' apparent love of all things green rarely extends to their wallet without regulations, or media shaming (both heavily in play with BF). I am sure that most would still burn coal without the two aforementioned factors. 

Under no illusion. Path of least resistance for companies, institutions and people.

The main carrot for anyone is through the wallet and money saved. And the big stick just to make sure.

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13 minutes ago, Shipping Forecast said:

Obviously my I have not be clear in my thoughts with two similar replies 🙁

What I was attempting to suggest is there are simpler alternatives in use, to having the whole crane system. Not the LNG, just the crane. 

To implement the crane system seems like an idea looking for home rather than a solution to the issue. For example Searoad Mersey II has LNG tank storage on open air part of the top vehicle deck. Drive on, put in place, lock and connect. To unload do the reverse, simple. No time used (wasted?) lifting, stowing etc. Wagons are parked directly in front of the storage looking at videos.

If mounting the tank on the upper deck appeals, how about reducing crane ops by lifting directly through the deck into position. Reduce the crane movement by 1 degree, save time in travelling back and forth. Latching support / locking mechanism would be needed but also in regular use so no show stopper.

All I am saying is that there are alternatives to the seductive Honfleur fuelling video.

I fully appreciate all of what you've said, your points are well made.

I'm not inclined to agree with the mentioned added hazard, the lifting process is automated and LNG isn't stored in pressurised containers so there is no explosion if the tank walls are breached. It evaporates.

The cranes to be used won't have the fuel cells swinging around like stevedores loading packing cases in 1960's Liverpool. They are the same design as used on docksides to lift containers from trailers and ships. Drive on, lift off, connect. The principle between both the French and Swedish design is the same, they are both plug and play. Their position onboard the FSG built ship is to exploit all of the vehicle deck space for HGV's and passenger vehicles and to segregate those passengers from the apparatus... which doesn't matter aboard a dry bulk carrier which is designed for unaccompanied trailers.

As a comparison, Galicia's sisters will lose over 300 lane metres having their enclosed LNG systems fitted which in the longer term puts them at a disadvantage and gives them an equal vehicle capacity to Honfleur which is nearly 30 metres shorter.

Shore side LNG fuelling from LNG tanks or HGV's also takes longer, requires more manpower, more maintenance and greater degree of fuel loss due to the liquid boiling off during it's journey to the onboard storage tanks.

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41 minutes ago, Shipping Forecast said:

All I am saying is that there are alternatives to the seductive Honfleur fuelling video.

Totally agree, BF received nearly €70m in grants to buy the gas/electric propulsion system and the fuel delivery system. It's the same reason why they had the scrubbers fitted to the existing fleet - huge grants to pay for it.

My argument was why would a new owner want it ripped out in favour of an alternative.

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3 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

Is that an issue in a case of Honfleur where she would spend four and a half hours alongside in Ouistreham in every 48-hour period? Ed. 

Give me a bit of time to dig out the paperwork to be sure but off the top of my head Chantiers reckon refuelling takes 40 minutes.

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