Oct. 28 - The world's first single hull, floating accommodation vessel that uses its own waves for stability is being prepared for launch in 2015. Designed by Norwegian company, Salt Ship Design for Hyundai Heavy Industries, the vessel will be the largest ship of its kind ever built, providing 800 oil rig workers with a stable, temporary home in rough seas. Jim Drury reports.
Norwegian company, Salt Ship Design say their new monohull vessel is the future of offshore accommodation for oil rig workers. The 500-foot ship generates its own waves, counteracting those of the sea, to keep the vessel stable. Oil rig employees usually stay in cabins located on floating platforms adjacent to the rig itself, because stationary ships are too rocky while mid-ocean. The solution offered by Salt Ship Design and shipowner Ostensjo is water-filled tanks built into a vessel's sides and bottom. Air valves at the top of each tank control the direction and rate at which the water flows back and forth. Tests on small models suggest the full-size vessel will counteract waves of up to five metres. Six pod-like propellers rotate independently under the hull, helping the ship maintain its distance from the attached oil rig. Ostensjo say offshore accommodation vessels are a relatively inexpensive alternative to current oil rig housing. Their ship will be the largest of its kind ever built. Accommodating 800 people it will contain a gym, sauna, swimming pools, conference rooms, and an amphitheatre. With all hands on deck, the company says it expects the vessel to be ready for launch by June, 2015.