SeaRoad Mersey on its way to Tasmania

Chas Kelly says everything on the ship can be remotely monitored and measured

SeaRoad Mersey on its way to Tasmania
Searoad Mersey II


SeaRoad Shipping’s Searoad Mersey II has begun its maiden delivery voyage to Davenport, Tasmania.

The ship left the builder’s yard in Flensburg, Germany on Saturday before passing through the Kiel Canal to the North Sea and then the English Channel during its journey to Australia.

SeaRoad Shipping’s Captain Lloyd Cahill is in charge of the ship, which currently includes a crew of 14.

Last month, the vessel successfully completed sea trials in the Baltic Sea off the coasts of Germany and Norway.

"This is an incredibly sophisticated vessel," SeaRoad Group chairman Chas Kelly says.

"Our current ships were built 25 years ago and the improvements in technology since then are mind-boggling.

"It’s like comparing an old ‘brick’ to an iPhone 7.

"It is amazing to discover that virtually everything on the ship can be remotely monitored and measured.

"Even the ballast valves have their own IP [internet protocol] addresses."

The ship will service Bass Strait and is the first in Australia to use liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel-and-power technology.

It is the first pure dry cargo ship globally to use a roll-on roll-off LNG supply system.

The company states that the new $110 million ship will enter service on Bass Strait using marine diesel oil (MDO) but will fully convert to LNG fuel in the first quarter of 2017, following which it will use LNG for ship operations 99 per cent of the time.

In mid-September Searoad Mersey II made its first voyage under its own power, sailing from Flensburg in northern Germany to a drydock at Odense in neighbouring Denmark for the application and curing of silicon underwater coatings.

During that time the gas system that will provide the ship’s environmentally-friendly LNG (liquefied natural gas) power to the main and auxiliary engines was commissioned, with the first gas trial undertaken successfully on October 4.

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