MAN Diesel & Turbo has won the order for 3 × MAN 6L21/31 gensets to power a wellboat newbuilding for Patagonia Wellboat, the Chilean fish-farming operator. The order is the latest in a long history of wellboat references for MAN Diesel & Turbo in Chile’s important, domestic fish-farming industry.
The new wellboat will be built at Asenav Chile’s largest, private shipbuilder in Valdivia, Chile. It will be the first vessel in a new generation of wellboats designed and developed by Asenav in cooperation with Patagonia Wellboat.
Engine delivery is scheduled for Q4 2015 with vessel delivery expected May 2016. The new order includes an option for an extra, identical wellboat.
A significant reference
The order for the gensets is the latest in a long line of Chilean fishing and fish-farm orders for medium-speed MAN engines, where especially the 23/30 model has been popular.
The MAN 21/31 engine has already established a solid foothold in other, major South American fishing markets such as the recent three trawlers ordered by Norwegian-based fishing concern, Copeinca (Corporacion Pesquera Inca S.A.), built at Peru’s SIMA Callao shipyard (Servicios Industriales de la Marina S.A.) and equipped with 6L21/31 main propulsion engines.
The MAN 21/31 engine
The L21/31 engine (mandieselturbo.com) has a 1,290-1,935 kW output range and, besides applications such as large fishing vessels, is also commonly employed by small to medium-sized tankers, cargo vessels, ferries, Ro-Ro vessels, coasters, tugs, workboats and supply vessels.
The Republic of Chile has a very-well-developed fish-farming industry that frequently uses wellboats to transport the harvest from deepwater cages to holding areas near onshore processing facilities. For MAN Diesel & Turbo, this offered an opportunity to re-establish links with the local shipbuilding industry.
Flanked by the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Andes to the east, Chile’s coastline is almost 6,500 kilometres long and reaches all the way south to the Antarctic Ocean. Carved up by fjords and dotted with islands in sparsely-populated areas, southern Chile is an ideal location for intensive fish production. Forecasts indicate that farmed produce here will provide 40% of the total output by global fisheries in 2015.
Wellboat design and functions
Patagonia Wellboats is a pioneer in transporting live fish and has a fleet of wellboats for the transportation of salmon and trout, the latest generation of which have all been built by Asenav.
The wellboat concept originates from a desire for a better product. Traditionally, the aquatic culture approach has involved catching fish, processing them in situ and preserving them with ice until the market can be reached.
Wellboats are a unique kind of fishing-vessel-cum-housing-facility where fish are collected from where they are bred and transported live to processing facilities near the market. Huge pipelines transfer the fish from their breeding enclosures at sea to the wellboat’s storage tanks whose water closely replicates that of the fish-farm with no disadvantage to the fish.
Indeed, wellboats carefully control all conditions in their storage tanks such as water temperature, CO2 levels and water quality to help the fish settle and stay calm, minimising the stress factors that inevitably affect fish quality. There are also cameras in each tank to monitor movement.
Though storage capacity differs, a wellboat typically holds about 1,400 cubic metres of water and houses up to 180 tonnes of fish.
About ASENAV and Patagonia Wellboat
Asenav was established in 1973. Its ship yard in Valdivia builds tugs, wellboats, motor yachts, fishing vessels, offshore ships, small cruisers, and RoPax and naval vessels for the Chilean Government, as well as customers within and without South America. Some of the high technology and designs developed by the company are licensed to foreign concerns, and Asenav continues to develop its own range in accordance with customer requirements.
Patagonia Wellboat was founded in 1991 in Puerto Montt, Chile and offers shuttle services for smolts using large-capacity vessels especially equipped for the loading, transportation and unloading of juvenile fish.