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Dive team keeps cruiseship on schedule

Shiprepair & Conversion Technology: 4th Quarter 2016Trident diving

Established in 1993, Terneuzen-based Trident Diving specialises in providing innovative underwater repair and maintenance solutions for the shipping and offshore markets. The company can undertake projects worldwide, supported by a network which includes facilities in Livorno, Italy; Cadiz, Spain; and, most recently opened, in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands. The latter investment was made to better service cruiseship clients, as well as operators in the oil and gas sector.

A challenging recent project highlighted by the company involved a cruiseship stern thruster exchange while the vessel was afloat. William Winters, general manager, says: “We have done this type of work before, but in this case the cruiseship had to stick to a very tight schedule and there was no scope for any delays.”

The assignment was divided into stages, with work carried out partly in Civitavechhia, Italy, and then in Marseille, France, while the vessel was on its normal operating schedule. To carry out this work, Trident built a temporary blank inside the ship that allowed the company to remove the unit without water entering the thruster housing or engine room. Once the new thruster was installed, Trident fitted and welded the stay plate using its in-house developed wet welding procedures. Winters adds: “For this project planning was crucial and our team had to perform to the tight schedule imposed by the limited port stays. We were able to successfully complete the exchange, allowing the vessel to sail on schedule to its next destination.”

Recent months have seen the company’s divers carry out a wide range of assignments in different parts of the world. These include an emergency rudder crack repair on a container vessel in Europe; propeller polishing on a LNG carrier in Las Palmas; an emergency propeller cropping on a bulk carrier in the Middle East; and a thruster exchange programme on a semi-submersible drilling rig off Walvis Bay in southern Africa. In addition, Trident’s team in Italy has supervised hull cleaning for an FPSO and undertook an emergency hyperbaric shaft seal renewal on a cruiseship in the Mediterranean.

Further afield, a Trident dive team was deployed from both The Netherlands and Canary Islands to attend a container vessel in Singapore for an emergency bow thruster inspection and repair this July. Together with local resources, the Trident divers attended the vessel and presented the customer with a solution to the problem.

Trident diver engineers have also carried out underwater modifications to a series of 18 container vessels to reduce the incidence of ‘singing’, an unpleasant noise emanating from the ship’s propeller. The company has considerable experience addressing this problem on cruiseships, but for the larger propellers on these container vessels new specialist tooling was developed in-house to make the solution viable and acceptable for the client. Winters says: “With the old generation tools, carrying out this work would have taken probably 14 days to complete, time which clearly these ships did not have. So we developed new tools which can carry out this work inside 24 hours.” As well as container vessels, Trident continues to carry out ‘anti-singing’ work for cruiseships, where this can adversely affect passenger enjoyment.

Winters adds: “One of our strengths is our flexibility and ability to manage several projects simultaneously through our well trained, full time employed staff. We also have the technical expertise and ability to develop new, case specific, tools and equipment in-house.”

As well as the new tools developed to allow large propeller edge modifications, Trident Diving recently acquired a new, fully independent, IMCA-compliant Nitrox dive container. This unit, which contains both an engineering room including compressors and a dive control station, was specifically built to support Trident Diving’s teams working underwater, and can be quickly and easily moved anywhere in the world.

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