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Patrol boat design – cheaper by the dozen?

VT-built 90.5m offshore patrol vessel destined for Trinidad and Tobago in 2011.

build of smaller vessels, such as coastal patrol vessels. In a report published by the UK Ministry of Defence, spending on ‘smaller warships’ for 2008, later explained to include offshore patrol vessels, has decreased while spending on coastal and ice-patrol vessels has increased. Spending for Fiscal Year 2006-07 for smaller warships was reported at more than £403 million (US$649.6 million), whereas for FY2007-08 the spending decreased to just over £373 million. An example of the increase in the


construction of coastal patrol vessels is the delivery of the fi rst Maritime Patrol Vessel (PZM) to be built by ASMAR shipyard, Talcahuano, Chile, named OPV PZM Piloto Pardo for the Chilean Navy. Its main function will be to protect the 27million km2

of Chilean territorial sea

and the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). T e fi rst of two 90m, 1500tonne OPVs designed by German shipbuilder Fassmer, OPV Piloto Pardo was handed over to the Chilean Navy at the end of the second quarter 2008. All technical requirements were met or exceeded to the full satisfac- tion of the Chilean Coastguard who will operate the vessel under the Chilean Navy. T e project has been seen as a success for both Fassmer and ASMAR. The vessel is part of the US$54 million Danuvio IV (PZM) programme. In the meantime Fassmer has sold similar OPVs to the navies of Argentina

trict naval budgets have resulted in a trend towards increasing hull numbers through the design and

and Colombia. T e Argentine Navy plans to build up to fi ve OPV 80s within the next few years, whereas the Colombian Navy will build one Fassmer OPV 80 at COTECMAR shipyard. In this case Fassmer has been awarded a contract to supply not only the design but also provide technical assistance, logistic support and the complete material package. More recently Fassmer introduced

an increased OPV design with a total length of 92m; the Fassmer OPV 90. T is increased OPV version is off ered with a maximum speed of up to 28kts, a range of up to 12.000nm and with a crew capacity of about 100 persons. Elsewhere in Europe, Damen has

delivered the fi rst Stan Patrol 4207 for the Albanian Navy. T e vessel, named Iliria, is the fi rst of a series of four vessels to be built for the Albanian Coast Guard. She will perform patrol as well as search and rescue (SAR) duties along the Albanian coast line. Austal of Australia has been particu-

larly busy of late, having been awarded the contract to build six 30m aluminium fast patrol craſt for the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. T e all-aluminium fast patrol boats will

support the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard in providing sustained surveil- lance in the country’s internal waters, the archipelagic territorial sea and its EEZ. The contract, which was awarded

following a competitive international invitation to tender process, followed similar naval fl eets recently delivered to

Ship & Boat International November/December 2008

Austal to the Government of Kuwait, the Yemen Ministry of Defence, the Austral- ian Customs Service and the New South Wales Water Police. In the USA, SeaArk Marine of Arkansas

has seen delivery of the ‘Marine 7’ 21V Commander Centre patrol boat to the town of Hempstead Bay Constables, New York. T is craſt is responsible for patrol, rescue, law enforcement and fisheries/ conservation enforcement on the south shore of Long Island in the waters within the town of Hempstead, Jones inlet and the Atlantic Ocean. The SeaArk 21ft Commander and

Dauntless vessels are based on a widely proven hull designed by C. Raymond Hunt & Associates, Massachusetts, and are constructed of all-welded marine- grade aluminium. T e vessel features a deep-V variable deadrise hull that is said to produce a smooth, dry and stable ride. SeaArk is currently producing a large

quantity of Commander and Dauntless class vessels for the US Navy for port security at naval installations worldwide, as well as numerous patrol boats, fi re/ rescue boats and homeland security boats for federal, state and local agencies. It remains to be seen whether this

trend for smaller craſt will continue, and especially as the UK Royal Navy is seeing delays in launching some of the larger vessels under construction, perhaps due to the current economic climate, but as 2008 draws to a close it is interesting to observe a trend in the global shipbuilding market emerging. SBI


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