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Offshore Milestones for HamiltonJet

4th May 2010

Milestones for HamiltonJet in Offshore Industry

The use of HamiltonJet waterjet propulsion units in crew boats and fast supply vessels has increased markedly in recent years as crew boat builders and operators recognise the many advantages of the propulsion system.  This year HamiltonJet reaches some significant milestones for the use of its waterjet products in the offshore industry.

Currently boatbuilder Gulf Craft in Louisianna, USA, is installing the 100th HamiltonJet HM811 waterjet to be used in a crew/supply vessel.  The vessel is one of three 58m monohull with five waterjets and 1300kW engines.  And with more recent orders HamiltonJet will have over 120 HM811 waterjets in service with the offshore industry by the end of the year - mainly in the Gulf of Mexico and West Africa.

The first crew/supply boat with HamiltonJet HM811 jets was the original Keith G McCall, launched by Gulf Craft in 2000.  Since then the company has supplied it largest HM series model to a wide variety of crew boat builders and operators, including Midship Marine, Piriou, Horizon, Island Boats, Seacor, Bourbon/Surf, Fymac, Rigdon and McCall.

In total, the HamiltonJet factory in New Zealand has manufactured over 220 HM811 waterjets since the first were installed in Canadian passenger ferry Famille Dufour II in 1997.  The majority have been quad installations, with a number of twins and triples as well as these new quin installations.

In the smaller HJ range of waterjets, the HamiltonJet HJ403 has become the workhorse in crewboats for the Bourbon Offshore Group.  Bourbon has purchased over 250 HJ403 waterjets for use in its international fleets of Surfer crewboats.  Built in France and Vietnam, the company produces several types of crewboats up to 28m long and with either twin, triple or quad HJ403 waterjets.  Most of these enter operation in the oil industries of Indonesia, Nigeria or Angola.

The HJ403 waterjet was introduced in 2003 to replace the HJ391, which was also used extensively by Bourbon Offshore.  Since then it has become one of HamiltonJet’s most popular models, with over 450 units manufactured and installed in a wide variety of work boats and pleasure craft.

The advantages of HamiltonJet waterjets in the crew boat and fast supply vessel sector are many.  Compared to conventional propeller systems waterjets provide greater reliability and reduced maintenance requirements by virtue of having no exposed parts to be damaged by debris and jets never overloading the engines, all of which results in higher vessel availability.  The high speed efficiency advantages and ability to travel at higher speeds when lightly laden reduces round trip duration and provides greater operational flexibility.

The exceptional manoeuvrability achieved with a HamiltonJet propelled vessel is a result of the highly effective steering and reverse systems integrated into the waterjet design, together with the rapid speed of control response.  These assist in providing a more stable platform during crew and cargo transfer, greater precision when manoeuvring close to rigs and reduced workload on engines and gearboxes when operating in DP mode.

Another major reason HamiltonJet is the preferred waterjet supplier to the offshore industry is the company’s extensive sales and support network, and specialist waterjet knowledge, which includes three regional offices and over 50 distributors globally.  This ensures HamiltonJet provides the best support for the duration of any project, from design and build, to commissioning, and throughout the vessel’s operating life – wherever it may be in the world.

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