Bollinger Builds Next Generation Liftboat

The evolution of liftboats took a giant leap forward when Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., delivered L/B Myrtle, a 137.5-ft.

(41.9-m) liftboat to Montco Offshore, Inc., Golden Meadow, La. Equipped with 245-ft. (74.6-m) legs, the self-propelled floating platform has the ability to work in water depths to 180 ft. with a 15-ft. air gap while lifting a total of 850 kips of variable load.

What sets L/B Myrtle apart from other liftboats is that it is equipped with a bow thruster and controllable pitch (CP) propellers for greater maneuverability and pinpoint positioning of the huge legs with oversized pads on the ocean bottom.

The vessel's namesake is in honor of Myrtle Orgeron, mother of Lee Orgeron, and is equipped with 40 x 16-ft. pads (12.1 x 4.8-m), much larger than those on other liftboats, to provide for greater bottom stability and greater deck loads. The L/B Myrtle can also jack with a full pre-load and its pre-load system has quick acting stainless steel dump valves.

It is equipped with three Nautilus cranes with 150, 50 and 25- ton capacities in an innovative configuration. The smaller crane is positioned on the starboard stern so that support vessels can tie-up to the liftboat and offload personnel, cargo, and/or fluids without hindering other work being done by the liftboat. The 150-ton crane has a 110-ft. boom and is equipped with VHF radio, loudhailer, load indicator and boom-mounted video camera with monitor to assist when load hook-ups are out of the normal view of the operator.

With regulatory classifications consisting of ABS loadline, SOLAS/MARPOL, USCG Subchapter L, L/B Myrtle measures 137.5 ft. (41.9-m) with a 92-ft. (28-m) beam and hull depth of 13-ft. (3.9-m). Open deck area is 6,000 sq. ft., and its three legs are 72 in., in diameter and constructed of 1.5-in., wall thickness high strength steel. Power is supplied by two Caterpillar 3512 diesels developing a total of 3,000 bhp, driving Berg controllable pitch propellers through Reintjes reduc- tion gears. Electrical power is produced by two 190 KW generators driven by Caterpillar 3306 diesels. A 350-bhp hydraulic motor drives the bow thruster.

The Hydraquip jacking system is designed using the latest hydraulic and computer technology to accurately control the leg position. The programmable logic controller provides all jacking system logic, safety interlocks, leg position and alarm monitoring. The hydraulic system incorporates a three speed jacking system that allows leg tagging at 10 ft./min, normal jacking at 4 ft./min and preload jacking at 2 ft./min. The jacking system has counterbalance (holding) valves at each motor for pinion isolation. All jacking system pressures, system status, temperatures, alarms, and operation manual are displayed on a liquid crystal plasma touch screen.

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 21,  Sep 2002

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First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.