Updates and announcements from land, sea and air – warehousing & logistics, aviation, maritime, storage, transportation and more

Filling a gap
In response to calls from the scientific community, ports and industrial surveyors, Chartwell Marine has launched its Scanwell shallow draft survey vessel, providing unparalleled standards of versatility and safety in 1.5m waters.

The Scanwell range is available in multiple hull sizes – 10m, 12m, 15m and 19m – enabling use in a wide variety of applications, such as offshore energy, port infrastructure and scientific expeditions.

The Scanwell’s larger size enables an additional level of versatility, allowing the vessel to be effective in both shallow draught situations and further out to sea. In the offshore energy sector, wind farms need surveying throughout their entire lifecycles, from the initial preparations to lay cables, maintenance checks on sub-sea infrastructure and final decommissioning. The same goes for oil & gas – with the additional need to ensure safe decommissioning of oil pipelines.

Additionally, a hybrid version of the vessel has been used as a teaching/education vessel, a task to which the vessel is particularly suited, owing to its quiet and comfortable operations. Loud engines make teaching challenging, while potentially disturbing marine life. With options to equip seabed mapping, electronic scanning and launch sampling tools, the vessel also has space built in for diver equipment, enabling operations that encompass biomarine and geological surveying.

Sophisticated shift system
Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Motors Corporation have developed the world’s first predictive Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Connected Shift System, enabling the vehicle to automatically shift to the optimal gear after identifying the road and traffic conditions ahead. Hyundai and Kia plan to apply the technology on future vehicles. During system development, the companies filed about 40 major patents in South Korea and abroad.

ICT Connected Shift System uses intelligent software in the Transmission Control Unit (TCU) that collects and interprets real-time input from underlying technologies, including 3D navigation equipped with a precise map of the road as well as cameras and radar for smart cruise control. The 3D navigation input includes elevation, gradient, curvature and a variety of road events as well as current traffic conditions. Radar detects the speed and distance between the vehicle and others, and a forward-looking camera provides lane information.

Using all of these inputs, the TCU predicts the optimal shift scenario for real-time driving situations through an artificial intelligence algorithm and shifts the gears accordingly.

Increasing regional connectivity
TrueNoord, the specialist regional aircraft lessor, has delivered the second of two new Dash 8-400 aircraft, which it has placed on long term operating lease agreements with Philippine Airlines (PAL). These aircraft (MSN 4610/4612) are the first Dash 8-400 aircraft manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (De Havilland Canada) to enter service in TrueNoord’s portfolio.

“The Dash 8-400 aircraft enter PAL’s commercial service at a time when the airline is seeing burgeoning demand for affordable flights,” says Carst Lindeboom, Sales Director Asia Pacific for TrueNoord. “Its short take-off and landing capabilities support efficient regional operations, so it is the perfect choice for Philippine Airlines to service their domestic and cross-border route network and meet increasing passenger demand for regional connectivity.

“The Dash 8-400 offers range and speed, extra seat capacity, flexible legroom, and excellent cargo capabilities so we know that in addition to Philippine Airlines, other airlines in the region will benefit from the greater flexibility that this new aircraft can deliver. We are willing to support other airlines to introduce the Dash 8-400 to their fleets.”

Lindeboom heads up TrueNoord’s expanding Singapore office and he confirms the rapid growth of regional flight capability across the region.

Expanding inventory
Specialist aircraft component support provider Bii.aero has purchased a B737-800 airframe for teardown. The 20-year-old aircraft (MSN28381) was previously owned by lessor Aircastle and operated by Indonesian carrier, Sriwijaya.

This aircraft is the first asset acquired by Bii in a pro-active programme that will see the company use in-house expertise and market valuations to rapidly expand its teardown operations throughout 2020. Bii’s CEO, Francis Cradock, and his team have been engineering a dynamic growth strategy to incorporate one aircraft a month which will sustain Bii’s high-quality inventory of commercial parts to meet burgeoning global requirements.

“We are ready to source aircraft to fulfil our plan and this is the first of several,” says Francis. “As a business, we have historically specialised in Boeing spare components so we have a particular affinity with the type, however our teardown strategy encompasses both Airbus and Boeing wide and narrow body aircraft as we have an expanding inventory of spares for leading airline customers.”

Warehouse warning
The UK Warehousing Association (UKWA) has warned that the logistics industry is likely to face a shortage of vital workers following the Government’s announcement of its new points-based immigration system that will limit the number of low-skilled workers entering the UK.

Peter Ward, the Association’s CEO, commented: “Companies operating in the logistics and warehousing industry need access to low-skilled, low-cost labour and with low youth unemployment figures in the UK, the sector has traditionally looked to the EU to supplement its workforce.”

He continued: “While it is hoped that the majority of EU citizens currently working in UK warehouses and distribution centres will choose to stay in Britain by applying for EU settlement scheme status, it is clear that the inability to recruit shop-floor operations staff from other countries will add to the recruitment pressure that the logistics industry is already under.”

Peter also questioned the Government’s suggestion that businesses will be able to reduce their reliance on foreign workers by increasing levels of pay and investing in automation.

Scrubbed up
Wärtsilä is going to supply a customised Hybrid Scrubber solution to two Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) ships, to enable them to be in compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) sulphur restriction legislation while operating on heavy fuel oil (HFO). The legislation became effective in January 2020.

The Wärtsilä hybrid solution allows flexibility in the cleaning of sulphur from the exhaust gases. When operating in closed-loop mode, the wash water circulates from the scrubber unit to a process tank, with seawater being used as make-up replenishment water as needed.

“Not all installations are the same and there is no single system that fits all applications. Having the flexibility to adjust the design to meet the customer’s specific needs is an important value-adding feature of our offering,” Sigurd Jenssen, Director, Exhaust Gas Cleaning, Wärtsilä Marine commented.

“We previously worked with Wärtsilä and are familiar with the quality and reliability of the group’s solutions,” added Giovanni Canu, VP, Special Projects and Operational Support at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. “We were confident, therefore, that the team there could design and engineer a sulphur emissions abatement system that could be successfully integrated into our two vessels.”

Working on the highways
Dyer & Butler has won a place on a framework with Leicester City Council to deliver highway maintenance in the city over the next two years. The agreement covers work from slabbed footpaths to junction improvements and is for a two-year period with the option of a further two-year extension. The anticipated spend across the framework is £4m per annum.

Commenting on the deal, Dyer and Butler Regional Director Craig Watt said: “We are extremely pleased to be awarded a place on this framework as part of our transport sector strategic growth and look forward to a strong relationship with Leicester City Council.”

The works form part of a wider project, ‘Connecting Leicester’, a series of developments focusing on highway and transport improvements, to improve connections between public realm schemes, supporting shopping, leisure, heritage and housing facilities.

Dyer & Butler will focus on planned maintenance and small to medium sized civil engineering/highways schemes for Leicester City Council, through a variety of direct award and competitive tenders.

New addition
Pall-Ex (UK) Limited’s subsidiary company Cranleigh Distribution Services Limited has acquired the goodwill of the UK pallet operation from Cranleigh Freight Services Limited. This is the first purchase by the new Pall-Ex company, which comprises of their UK senior management team and shareholder members. The new business will share premises with the founder-member at Dunsfold Park.

Cranleigh Freight Services Limited was established by Colin and Pauline Young in 1977 with a single leased truck to provide logistics services to Europe. It later added pallet distribution joining Pall-Ex in 1996 to offer customer next day pallet deliveries to every postcode every day before commencing its two-man home delivery operation in 1999.

Going forward, Cranleigh Freight Services Limited will continue to concentrate and develop its European just-in-time operation and two-man home delivery throughout the UK.

Kevin Buchanan, Group CEO of Pall-Ex, comments: “Our shared values of quality customer service and innovation have made Cranleigh a valuable addition to the Pall-Ex network and have demonstrated to other members what can be achieved.”

Software benefits
AVEVA, global leader in engineering and industrial software, has announced an important update to its AVEVA E3D™ design software that addresses the specific needs of the marine sector.

Designed with the most up-to-date user interface principles and best practices, intuitive and easy to use AVEVA E3D™ Design software combines the latest three-dimensional graphics and user interface technologies with state-of-the-art data management.

“With this latest software release, AVEVA is responding to the ever-growing and changing needs of ship owners and shipyards the world over,” said Ravi Gopinath, COO, AVEVA. “Meeting sustainability goals, maximising business agility and improving operational performance calls for integrated design and engineering tools that can streamline the process, improve speed and remove cost and complexity to rapidly address these market imperatives. Using our new software, marine operators will now be able to realise up to 40 per cent gains in engineering efficiency while moving to operating paradigms that will ultimately help protect the environment.”