Strong expertise

Established in 1989 with a focus on specialist subsea vessel design and shipyard supervision, marine engineering company MAATS Tech has developed over the last 25 years to become a major player in the offshore engineering industry. Specialising in turnkey, ship-based carousel systems, the company acts as main contractor for the design, build and installation of both on-deck and under deck carousels as well as any associated loading and unloading equipment. With its extensive experience in carousel systems, having supplied approximately 50 carousels to around 30 different vessels over the years, the company has become the trusted supplier to many of the major offshore contractors; this includes Subsea 7, Technip, Aker, J Ray McDermott and SBM. In addition to these close working relationships with major blue chip organisations, the company has also developed strong relationships with world renowned shipyards such as IHC in the Netherlands, Vard and Kleven in Norway and DSME and HHI in South Korea.

An expert in ship-based carousel systems, the company has earned world leader status in the supply of carousels that are installed below deck. Using this experience, the company made the strategic decision to change direction for pipe lay vessel requirements to cable lay vessels following a shift of emphasis to the new cable lay business in support of cabling to offshore platforms and wind farms in the shipbuilding sector.

Since previously being featured in Shipping & Marine magazine in March 2015, the company has continued its focus on working through its healthy order book while also taking on major new projects, as Managing Director at MAATS Tech John Holt comments: “MAATS have completed carousel systems on vessels with Subsea 7, two in The Netherlands and one in South Korea, and carousel systems for Sapura in The Netherlands. The majority of these vessels will be working in Brazilian waters with some already in operation. Work has also started on the equipment for the ABB cable lay vessel Victoria which is being built at the Kleven shipyard in Norway. MAATS’ contract is with Kleven.”

Indeed, in October 2015 MAATS Tech announced it was to deliver cable lay equipment for the new state-of-the-art ABB Cable Lay vessel, which is to be built at Kleven shipyard in Norway and is due for delivery in 2017. Since then, MAATS Tech has been working closely with ABB, Kleven and ship designers Salt Ship to develop a fit for purpose, highly specialised vessel; MAATS Tech’s scope of work for this project is to deliver and integrate cable lay mission equipment through engineering and delivering a 7000 tonne on deck carousel with loading arm, a 4500 tonne underdeck carousel with spooling arm, two 45 tonne tensioners, three three tonne tensioners and on deck product pathways together with the lay spread control system.

In addition to this new project, the company has also begun delivering equipment for its contract with Spanish shipyard LaNaval, which is building a new multi-purpose vessel for the marine construction company DEME. Known as Living Stone, the cutting edge vessel will be capable of performing cable, umbilical and rock installation, trenching, offshore transport and installation works and, upon its completion, it will be the most advanced subsea cable laying vessel in the world.

The vessel will feature two cable carousels from MAATS Tech, as John comments: “MAATS Tech is currently preparing to deliver the fabricated carousel equipment to the LaNaval yard for installation, which is due to commence in October. The vessel will not only be used for cable laying, but also as a rock dumper; it is also equipped accordingly with deck mounted coffer dams and over boarding grabs.”

As demand continues to grow in the DC cable lay business, the company has expanded into the cable lay/cable handling business with relative ease thanks to its transferable equipment that can be used in both flex pipe operations and large DC cable products. However, in preparation of future contracts in areas such as the North Sea and Baltic, John says the company is keen to continue extending its product line: “MAATS Tech has designed and is currently building a new concept four jaw tensioner aimed specifically at the cable market. The unit has jaws arranged in a cross of St Andrew rather than the usual arrangement of St George, which allows easy access from above for transfer of repeaters or joints, while the frame design allows passage of a second cable to enable twin cable lay when laying DC cable. The tensioner is 45 tonnes in capacity with possible 60 tonne capacity if used in the flex pipe market; two of these units will be going on the ABB Vessel mentioned earlier.”

While the changing market remains extremely challenging for many companies operating within it, John believes the cyclical oil and gas market will recover but may be slower than in previous years. “The recipe is different and companies will and are having to adapt to these changes; this can be seen with the acquisition, mergers and joint venture agreements that are happening between organisations in order to weather the current storm. It will be these companies that will emerge in a stronger position going forward and MAATS Tech intends to be one of these companies,” he concludes.

MAATS Tech Limited

• Marine engineering consultancy for specialist ship design
• Successfully expanded into bespoke equipment for cable laying vessels
• Two major contracts in progress