In recent years, patrol boat operators and crew have come under increased pressure to deal with as many operational situations as possible.
As well as confronting waterborne criminals and engaging in coastal surveillance, these vessels are expected to fulfil a wide range of tasks, including chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) detection, oil pollution clearance, search and rescue (SAR) and protecting waterfronts from the ever-present spectre of terrorism.
The most obvious solution would appear to be the development of multipurpose patrol craft that can be adapted, seamlessly and effectively, to deal with a number of different missions. Thailand-based naval architect Albatross Marine Design (AMD) has already adopted a modular approach to the construction of support vessels, workboats and catamarans (see Offshore Marine Technology Q1 2015, page 24), and this methodology offering a range of different modular layout concepts for increased flexibility would seem a natural fit for the patrol and SAR boat sector.
However, while the modular catamaran concept may suit the offshore and workboat sectors, patrol boats (particularly those operated by naval forces) are subject to much higher levels of scrutiny. There is also the issue of cost; developing a new hull form from scratch involves considerable expense, necessitating time-consuming CFD testing and analysis. AMD’s approach is to strike a balance between the proven and the new, blending traditional hull design elements with more radical, modular options when it comes to the vessel’s superstructure. The resultant design has been named the BOAR12 (B12).
One hull shape
AMD managing director and founder Albert Nazarov explains: “We were thinking of typical tenders for patrol boats, where the requirement of a ‘proven’ hull design is often specified. From that, we decided to design a range of vessels based on one hull shape this enables us to offer a ‘proven’ hull every time, to satisfy the purchaser.”
Subsequently, AMD proposes a universal 12m-long, aluminium hull form, designed to the industry-recognised ISO12215-5 standard covering professional craft below 24m and capable of speeds of up to 50knots, and compliant with Germanischer Lloyd’s (GL’s) +100A5 III Patrol Boat notation. “Structurally, due to its shapes, the B12 should be easy to build and to outfit say, with ballistic panels,” Nazarov adds. This hull could be extended to 15m, if so required by the customer.
With the standardised B12 hull form in place, customers could then choose from a range of layout options. So far, AMD has developed four layouts: these are dedicated to ‘interceptor’, ‘combat’, ‘landing’ and ‘fire/rescue’ missions. AMD is also considering the possibility of an unmanned surface vessel (USV) layout option, as moves towards the development of remote-controlled and autonomous military / patrol craft gain traction.
The B12 would ideally incorporate a twin-screw arrangement, with each engine generating between 224kW and 373kW. The main propulsive choice would be waterjets though, of course, customers may decide to opt for an alternative option. With such a set-up in place, AMD recommends a cruising speed of between 20-25knots, with top speed maxing out at approximately 45knots.