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During ship to ship transfer for Liquefied Natural Gases (LNG), ships are often docked very close to one another. As such there is often a large risk involved when engaging in such operations since the ships wold have a risk of colliding into one another. As such to minimize the risk involved, it is imperative that managers understand the best practices and procedures involved in the process of ship to ship transfers for LNG. In this post, we’ll cover the 3 key categorisation of marine fenders, which are crucial logistical tools involved in the ship to ship transfer process.
Marine fenders are a type of marine equipment that are used to prevent boats, ships and other naval vessels from colliding against each other or against docks, wharves and piers. These are also referred as marine bumpers.
In today’s times, these fenders are usually kept on the hull or the head of a boat or a ship in order to prevent casualty to the hull or the head of the naval vessel if there is any collision happening between boats. However, at the same time, marine fenders are also employed in piers, docks, wharves and other regular boat entrance and exit points on a permanent basis.
There are various types of marine fenders which have emerged over the years and which provide excellent utility in the area of water transportation. The wide variety of marine fenders ensures that sufficient options are provided so as to enable the authority to choose the best possible fender system or marine fender.
The following lists the 3 main categorisation of fenders which are available in the market
- Rubber Fenders
- Foam Fenders
- Composite Fenders
Rubber fenders are developed in wide range of variations to serve different applications. These fenders are developed complying with PIANC guiding principles. Rubber Fenders decrease the input reaction force and provide requisite angular guidance to the hull pressure. These are the fenders which have highest market demand. These fenders also have a positive impact on rubber industries round the globe. There noticed a great advancement and growth of rubber industry due to marine application of rubber in last ten years. Here are 2 common types of rubber fenders which are usually manufactured by different shipping accessory companies
Arch Fenders: This type of marine equipment is used in order to provide aid and assistance to a type of marine fender known as the cylindrical fender. Since the maintenance aspect in arch fenders is absolutely zero, it is one of the best marine equipment and the best fender system.
Arch fenders can be used for small and mid-ranged ships and boats and provide excellent quality service to the same. These fenders are favoured when there is a need of rough marine fender system. These are most reliable fenders which serve their purpose victoriously even in severe most conditions. These allow easy installation. These fenders are also excellent in wear resistance and shear resistance.
- Cylindrical Fenders: They are the most basic and common fender systems used in today’s times. They can be used for all types of marine boats and ships. These fenders are also easy to install hence it is the most widely used fenders in the market. They can serve to both large as well as small vessels. As per the requirement of cylindrical fenders, these are available in three size categories: Small Cylindrical Fenders, Intermediate Cylindrical Fenders and Large Cylindrical Fenders. These fenders are economical and have thick walls which can efficiently resist wear, abrasion and higher loads.
The structure of these fenders is a dual-layered closed cell structure. The inner core of foam fenders is made up of polyethylene foam and reinforced polyurethane elastomer is used as covering to the core. The water penetration in these types of fenders is approximately zero. As such, these fenders can serve continuously throughout their life, even when damaged. Here are 2 main types of foam fenders.
- Sea-Guard fenders: These can serve equally well in floated as well as suspended conditions. These fenders are available for both ship as well as harbour and have easy maintenance works. These fenders are mostly employed in ship-to-ship operation and cannot be destroyed or destructed. These fenders are unsinkable and deflation-free. Most of the foam fenders are manufactured on the guidelines of US navy stipulations.
- Sea-cushion fenders: These are rough and tough fenders. These are floating fenders to be employed in roughest situation and the core used in their manufacturing is of superior grade then in sea-guard fenders. It contains a network of chain tires with a hard core which serves as an unsinkable sea-cushion. These are most reliable and efficient sort of foam fenders used for LNG vessels which require least maintenance. As such these fenders are mostly applied on LNG ships because they cannot burst.
These are the fenders which can be made up of any sort of composite materials. These fenders usually consist of a rubber profile with a wear resistant UHMW-PE coating with a low coefficient of friction. All sorts of Tug Fenders are considered in this category
- Tug Fenders: These are only vessel fenders and installed on a tug vessel. These fenders are exposed to maximum wear and abrasion, so these are made up of toughest materials which can bear greater degree of wear and abrasion, to which a ship is exposed due to water currents and other ship. So that the fenders can serve longer life with maximum efficiency. These can be cylindrical, tapered, keyhole, M- and W-tug fenders based on geometrical features. These all are ship fenders and somehow like one another with only difference in geometric design. All these tugboat fenders are made up of extremely tough materials so as to resist wearing and shearing offered to the ship by other ship and the water current. All these fenders are heavy duty fenders and different design enable efficient working in different condition.
To read more about the topic on ship to ship transfers for LNG, so read our other blogs below or visit our courses below!
Ship to Ship Transfer for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is a 3-day online training course. Designed to teach delegates how to best prepare, operate, control and safely execute and complete complex Off Shore STS Operations, this training program was created based on the 2013 OCIMF, CDI, SIGTTO and the International Chamber of Shipping publication: Ship to Ship Transfer Guide. The knowledge obtained can be used to verify that STS operations and systems are comprehensive and promote safety and environmental excellence, with the intention of minimizing risk in the execution of their operations and providing the ability to measure and continuously improve their management systems.
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