Austal Wins Two Contracts

Australian shipbuilder Austal Ships and its U.S. subsidiary, Austal USA, have each secured contracts for new vessels.

Austal USA - which was the creation of a new shipyard in conjunction with Bender Shipbuilding in Mobile.

Ala. - has signed a contract for a 1 12-ft.

(34 m) dinner cruise vessel with Island Queen Cruises of Miami, Fla. The yard has already enjoyed considerable success, and is counting on it's innovative high-speed craft to catch on for U.S.

military work. The new order increases Austal USA's production to four vessels, adding to the two 150 ft. (45.7 m) crew-supply vessels and the 82 ft.(24.9 m) passenger catamaran currently under construction. Due for delivery in November 2002. the dinner cruise catamaran will operate in the Miami and Biscayne Bay area, offering a variety of charter options appealing to corporate and large private groups.

The vessel design centers on a Main Deck dining area for up to 200 seats and will also feature a large Upper Deck with bar and dance area and an open Sun Deck. Finishes such as stainless steel railings throughout, coupled with Austal's flair for interior design will significantly enhance the overall experience on-board. The hulls will be fitted out for a galley, a wash-up space and bathrooms. The catamaran will be powered by two Caterpillar 3406C diesel engines, each rated at 310 bhp, driving FP propellers through Twin Disc Marine gears. Financing for the project was provided by Caterpillar Finance of Nashville, Tenn.

Austal Ships' new contracts comprise an order for three 156 ft. (47.5 m) passenger catamarans for New World First Ferry of Hong Kong, with an option for a further four vessels on completion of the first three.

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 20,  Nov 2001

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