ArcelorMittal Galati, Romania, has supplied steel for an Antarctic Supply Research Vessel (ASRV) with icebreaking capabilities commissioned by the Australian government to broaden the country’s exploration of the Southern Ocean and Antarctica.
The 156m-long vessel is currently being constructed at Damen Shipyards in Galati, Romania.
ArcelorMittal supplied heavy plates in grades ranging from AH36 to EH36. The marine steels are built strong (up to 620Mpa) with a low carbon content, ideal for tackling the challenging conditions of the polar waters.
Designed to carry out both research and supply functions in Antarctic waters, the vessel will be designed for breaking up to 1.65m-thick ice at speeds of 3 knots and will supply Australia’s permanent research stations in the area with cargo, equipment and personnel. She will feature science laboratories and offices spread across an area of 500m².
Smooth sailing with Damen
ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products and Damen Shipyards Group have a longstanding working relationship, reinforced by yet another high-profile project.
One of the main challenges ArcelorMittal successfully met, was to deliver the plates to Damen in the required dimensions – a third of them was to be thin and wide, in 6-8mm thickness and 3,000mm width. The thinner plates are used for the deck of the vessel, while the thicker ones are usually used to form the hull. Additionally, the extra wide plates significantly reduce the number of welds required.
ArcelorMittal Galati’s proximity to Damen’s shipyard minimised the chance of transport delays. It also allowed ArcelorMittal’s experts to provide a swift answer to any technical questions the client might have.
Previously, ArcelorMittal supplied steel and collaborated with Damen on their new class of service operation vessels (SOVs).
Symbolic coin for the keel laying ceremony
To formally recognise the start of the construction, the official keel laying ceremony took place at the shipyard in Galati. Several coins were placed under the keel in accordance with tradition, including a Dutch silver coin dated 1642, the year that Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to reach Tasmania. Tasmania is not only where the offices of the Australian Antarctic Division are located, but the island's capital, Hobart, will serve as the vessel's home port.
Delivery of the ASRV is scheduled for April 2020.