Lamor and Nordic Seahunter have entered a worldwide exclusive relationship for sales and customization of the modular work platforms for shoreline and harbor operations. The Lamor Seahunter is a unique and robust platform that has been fully tested in various weather and environmental conditions in Norway. The platform is powered by an outboard engine.
“We are very proud to have become a partner with Lamor, thus creating the Lamor Seahunter. We feel that the exclusive worldwide agreement is an exceptional opportunity for the Nordic Seahunter concept with a globally recognized oils spill recovery and response company like Lamor,” says Rune Rørstad, Department Manager, Nordic Seahunter, Bodø Industri AS.
“This agreement and product line is a perfect niche fit for our product portfolio. The synergies between both companies are unique and the new Lamor Seahunter is a working platform with flexible configurations and easily transported, something I believe our customers will truly benefit from in the various oil spill clean-up operations. The Lamor Seahunter is a very carefully designed concept that will exceed customer expectations,” says Lamor’s Product Group Manager Krister Rask.
“Each hull is rotomolded thermo plastic (PE) which ensures a durable and conform surface. The hulls are catamaran shaped which gives the most stable work platform for these kinds of operations. Moreover, two or more hulls may be connected, side by side, or in length to perform an even longer and wider platform,” says Rørstad.
Each hull can carry 1500 kg (3300 lbs) which is more than three times its own weight. “The Lamor Seahunter hulls may be stored in stock, and are easily transported on trailers, trucks, containers, helicopters etc.,” concludes Rask.
The groundbreaking Sternmax is a high capacity advancing Arctic skimmer designed to separate oil from the drifting ice with a high recovery rate of…
For the second year in a row, Alaska Clean Seas (ACS) has conducted an Advanced Oil Spill Response in Ice Course at the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) in Hanover, New Hampshire. In January and February this year, two separate week-long courses were held, training approximately 55 spill response personnel representing oil companies and agencies working on Alaska’s North Slope.
This course was held at CRREL’s 60 x 25 x 8 outdoor saline test basin. Approximately 18-20” of sea ice is grown using the tank’s chilling system, completely covering the tank’s surface. “North Slope crude oil is injected under the ice prior to the start of training. Our training covers a wide range of topics, including: ice safety, detection and delineation of an oil spill under ice, containment and recovery tactics in ice, deployment of skimmers and recovery systems, and oil spill in-situ burning,” says Alaska Clean Seas, Chris Hall, Training Specialist and Oil Spill Responder.
“We select topics that provide the responder with diverse, realistic training but the focus is to use CRREL to do what we cannot do on the North Slope. CRREL allows us the opportunity to train with real oil in real ice. It is a safe and contained environment. That said, all of the unknowns and unique winter operational challenges that can happen in a real spill can happen at CRREL,” Hall highlights. “Our students have knowledge and proficiency in site safety, equipment operations, and other spill response topics from their weekly training on the North Slope. CRREL enables us to ‘put it all together’ in a realistic yet simulated training environment. We build confidence in our students that they can effectively respond during an Arctic oil spill event,” notes Hall.
Vendor support has been critical to the success of this training. “Our vendors provide equipment that is geared to a winter Arctic spill response scenario. Very few of our students have ever attended an oil spill trade show or conference, so they are not familiar with individual company representatives. These are true frontline end-users, deploying the equipment without the controls that might be present in a vendor demonstration,” Hall outlines.
“Lamor brings great spill response equipment and a wide range of Arctic response expertise. Lamor representatives have been active participants in ACS training events for years, both at CRREL and Ohmsett in New Jersey. Each year sees a new piece of skimming equipment brought to the training and each class gets the opportunity to put the equipment through its paces. We are highly appreciative for the assistance provided by the Lamor team,” says Hall.
Unique oil spill cooperative
ACS is a non-profit, incorporated oil spill response cooperative whose current membership includes oil and pipeline companies that engage in or intend to undertake oil and gas exploration, development, production and/or pipeline transport activities on the North Slope of Alaska.
“We are a unique oil spill cooperative in that ACS provides its member companies with extensive oil spill management and response training, oil spill research and development, and day-to-day field environmental and spill response support,” says Hall.
“Our operations are focused on Alaska’s North Slope and selected areas of the Alaskan Outer Continental Shelf and adjacent shorelines coupled with the Trans-Alaska Pipeline from Pump Station One to Milepost 167,” Hall concludes.
Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement is the principal US federal agency that funds research in oil spill technologies through the Oil Spill Response Research (OSRR) program. For BSEE, Ohmsett is the cornerstone of its OSRR program. The OSRR programhas partnered with state and federal government agencies, academia, private industry and other countries who share similar interests in Arctic oil spill response research.
In March, BSEE and the United States Coast Guard (USCG) invited several OSR equipment manufacturers under the theme “BSEE Ice Month Testing at Ohmsett” to evaluate different types of skimmers used by the USCG. The testing conditions simulated the Alaska North Slope crude (ANS) in two different ice conditions with 30% and 70% ice concentration.
“We tested our Lamor Multimax 50 (LAM 50) and our proven oil recovery bucket skimmer (LRB), which has been used in numerous oil spills since the early 1990s,” says Lamor’s COO Rune Högström, who was at Ohmsett to supervise the testing of Lamor’s equipment.
All tests were performed with Hydrocal, a standard Ohmsett test oil. “Hydrocal, a lubricant oil, was selected rather than a crude oil because, as a refined product, it provides a more stable test fluid and produce less of a breathing hazard over the four-week test period. At a nominal test temperature of 32F (0C), Hydrocal has a density of 0.90 g/mL and a viscosity of 1000 cP,” says Lamor’s Vince Mitchell, VP Special Projects.
“We had utilized our latest brush technology for the LRB and the test results exceeded our expectations markedly. Large amounts of oil were recovered with minimal water intake, “Högström highlights.
“The most significant outcome of the test was that it made no difference if there was 30% or 70% or any ice at all for that matter with respect to the recovery capacities, due to its easy maneuverability and ice-handling features,” he notes.
Engaging a world-class facility
Government agencies including the USCG and the Navy as well as private industry and oil spill response organizations train their emergency response personnel with real oil and their own full-scale equipment. Some of the testing activities have included remote sensing tests, wave energy conversion device tests, skimmer and boom tests, dispersant tests, alternative fuel recovery tests, and industry oil spill response training classes.
The research and training facility centers on an approx. 10 million liter (2.6 million gallon) salt water tank. Government and the private sector train with oil under realistic oil spill conditions and increase their proficiency using actual oil spill recovery equipment by collecting and recovering oil. Ohmsett creates oil spills in a safe environment. Without this facility, experiments would have to be conducted in the open ocean, which have significant environmental implications.
“The Ohmsett facilities have a full-scale oil spill response equipment testing, research and training can be conducted in a marine environment with oil under controlled environmental conditions i.e. waves and oil types,” says Högström.
“The opportunity to test our skimmers at Ohmsett was once again remarkable and a fantastic experience since its facilities offers a realistic simulated controlled marine environment for oil spill equipment e.g. the use of real oil in a wave/tow tank. Based on the outstanding offering of services coupled with the great cooperation and flexibility of its staff, Ohmsett is already an integral part of our testing and vetting process,” concludes Högström.
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Lamor is offering, in Spanish, an IMO level 1 training course in Panama City, Panama February 18 – 20, 2014…
Environmental responsibility incorporates being professionally prepared through training and having the necessary equipment for rapid intervention during oil spill accidents. Lamor offers these opportunities to take advantage of learning by implementing effective and efficient operations worldwide, on every terrain and in any climatic condition.
Lamor offers customers and governmental agencies that are responsible for oil spill response, monitoring, and control, a three-level fully accredited training program mandated by the UN’s International Maritime Organization (IMO). Lamor’s training program, which is offered locally or on-site at the customer’s location, is certified by the UK Nautical Institute; an important achievement for Lamor considering the Institute’s strict accreditation policies and procedures.
Dario Miranda is an experienced Spanish speaking OSR instructor, who is certified by the Nautical Institute and he has given numerous IMO courses.
IMO level 1 training course in Panama City (Downloadable PDF)
In late May Estonia and Finland conducted a joint oil spill prevention exercise off the Port of Paldiski, Estonia. The exercise is held annually under bilateral agreements between the countries bordering the Baltic Sea.
EPBG’s Senior Logistics Officer, Police Lieutenant Tõnis Trubetski said: “The Lamor OSR equipment increases our capabilities to successfully respond to oil spill emergencies.” In late May Estonia and Finland conducted a joint oil spill prevention exercise off the Port of Paldiski, Estonia. The exercise is held annually under bilateral agreements between the countries bordering the Baltic Sea.
Commissioned by the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), the €48 million MS Louhi is based at the Port of Upinniemi approx. 40 kms west of Helsinki in the archipelago. The vessel will be operated by the Finnish Navy. Louhi is equipped to sail in the Baltic Sea all year round and it can reach a speed of 15 knots and even through a 50 cm (20 in) thick ice sheet, it can travel at 7.5 knots.
Nystedt explains: “Although Louhi did not participate in this exercise, the multipurpose vessel has been fitted with several of our newest technologies that none of the other 14 Finnish oil response ships have, although they also are equipped with our efficient OSR technology. For example, Louhi, with our in-built skimmers, is capable of collecting 1,200 tons of spilled oil during just one trip,” he says.
Lamor Corporation launched its next generation smart eco Lamor Power Pack (eLPP 55-80) at Spillcon in Cairns, Australia in early April. The eLPP is one unit with multiple functions to operate several oil spill response units i.e. skimmers, pumps and boom reels simultaneously, as well as other hydraulically driven equipment with green technology.
In staying ahead of new and stricter legislation, Lamor eLPP series has direct intelligent communications between the diesel engine and hydraulic system synchronizing all functions and reducing emissions utilizing the highly advanced Lamor Monitoring Control System (LMC).
The remote monitoring function provides instant feedback, alerts, service updates and diagnostics. The global positioning system (GPS) coupled with the animated display has automatic reporting features such as location, data log and service intervals to a remote command center.
The eLPP has a 55-80 kW capacity and is a robust and user-friendly unit with fewer emissions and reduced noise levels. The new technology features pre-adjusted hydraulic flow and pressure for Lamor pumps and skimmers and customized adjustable hydraulic flow and pressure for other equipment. The eLPP has automatic sleep and idle modes.
“At Lamor we continuously invest in bringing new and innovative products and upgrades that are ahead of legislation. Moreover, our latest series of power-packs, specifically the eLPP is one of several products that will come on-stream in the near future. In line with our strategy, we intend to continue to bring the best available green technology and solutions to market which exceed our customer demands, ” says COO Rune Högström, Lamor Corporation.
The Arctic seaways are beginning to be busier with the culmination of rapid climate change due to global warming coupled with an estimated 25 percent of the world oil and gas reserves. Moreover, the Northwest Passage unites the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and shortens transit routes saving time and money in commercial trade. The melting Arctic will reduce dependency of the Panama and Suez Canals.
In recent years, according to polar climate scientists and researchers, the shrinking Arctic sea ice will become passable without the assistance of icebreakers for a greater period each summer. In 2009, the German-based Beluga Group in Bremen was the first western company to attempt and succeed in the crossing without icebreaker support from Ulsan, South Korea to Rotterdam, the Netherlands, thus cutting approx. 4,000 nautical miles off the journey.
By linking the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans greatly reduces transit times for ships that have relied on the southern route through the Panama Canal. Temperatures in the Arctic are rising faster than anywhere else in the world, making the Arctic region easier to navigate. For shipping companies hoping to shorten trade routes through the Arctic Ocean it provides them quicker access to economic dynamos such as China and India.
A new geopolitical battleground
In early 2011, at an Arctic conference held in Tromsö, Norway, U.S. Rear Admiral Dave Titley stated: “We believe that sometime in the next few decades there is a good chance that the Arctic Ocean will be essentially ice-free for extended periods.”
These longer intervals of ice-free waters will likely mean more vessels trying to navigate the narrow straits and channels of the Northwest Passage, a series of waterways along the US coast that wind through Canada’s Arctic archipelago of 36,000 islands, including commercial shippers looking for shortened trade routes.
Canada, for example, has claimed it has full rights over the parts of the passage that pass its territory. While the US and EU counter by stating the passage is in international waters. Countries that border the Arctic region are Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Iceland, Norway, Russia and the US. That said, the Arctic Ocean continues to cause more diplomatic riffs pursuant to the usage of waterways. All countries in the region regard parts of the Arctic seas as “national waters” i.e. territorial waters out to 12 nautical miles. There also are disputes regarding what passages constitute “international seaways” and rights to passage along them e.g. the Northern Passage.
Energy sources under ice
As the need for energy continues to rise and while onshore oil reserves dwindle, the search for oil offshore continues to surge. This increases the risks for accidents. The harsh climatic conditions in the Arctic Ocean make the exploration and extrapolation very dangerous. The waters of the Arctic are particularly extreme for drilling because of the punishing cold, long periods of darkness, dense fogs, and hurricane-strength winds.
Lamor’s knowledge, expertise and commitment in providing the most advanced oil spill clean-up solutions with equipment, training, and a dedicated response team known as the Lamor Response Team (LRT), is unparalleled with a global reach in any climatic condition and region. “We have expertise and equipment for tackling hazardous accidents such as oil spills caused by collisions, groundings etc. in all terrains and climates,” says Fred Larsen, CEO of Lamor Corporation.
The Arctic Ocean’s ecosystem is considered to be one of the most vulnerable to oil spills in comparison to other regions. “The cold weather, the thick ice cover together with slow turnover of ecosystems mean that toxic oil spills last longer and expose multiple generations of organisms to contamination,” says Larsen.
“An Arctic oil spill could set off irreversible chain-reactions of contamination. The lack of sunlight also impacts the breakdown of spilled oil and other chemicals. Therefore, it is essential for both corporations and governments to be responsible and take the necessary steps by investing in training and equipment to reduce a catastrophic environmental disaster in a proactive way. This is where Lamor can help,” Larsen says categorically.
Increased activities, increased needs
“The Arctic seaways will increasingly become busier in coming years due to climate change and the surge in exploration of natural resources. This sea change will create major opportunities for Finnish ice-breaking expertise,” says Tero Vauraste, CEO of Arctia Shipping.
As the climate becomes warmer, the three Arctic seaways, the Northeast Passage north of Russia, the Northwest Passage north of Canada and the so-called Polar Route, will cut shipping distances by as much as 20 to 40% compared with the routes through the Panama and Suez Canals.
“The Northeast Passage is spearheading this development with its nuclearpowered icebreaker service,” Vauraste highlights. “In 2012, approximately 1.4 million tons of cargo aboard 43 vessels passed along this route. Russia aims to have some 20 million tons of cargo go through by 2020 and the reported capacity is up to 50 million tons,” he says. Knowledge and potential According to Vauraste, Finland is a world class leader with expertise in designing, building and operating icebreakers and other vessel types suitable for Arctic conditions. There will be no lack of opportunities due to the fact that the current global fleet of around 100 ageing icebreakers hardly meets even today’s needs.
“At least 20—40 new icebreakers will be required within the next 10—20 years to replace old ones and to meet new needs, and this includes proficient crews for operating them as well,” says Vauraste.
Environmental issues pose a particular challenge for future development because increasing activity also increases risks. “Icebreakers should be multipurpose vessels with oil spill recovery equipment onboard coupled with search and rescue capabilities,” he states emphatically.
Additional factors that affect Finland’s position in terms of maritime logistics are the EU’s imminent sulfur emissions directive and Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) which will both cut back emissions and increase shipping costs. “Arctia has used Wärtsilä’s technology for converting its multipurpose icebreakers Fennica and Nordica to comply with the new environmental regulations. The conversion reduces the ships’ SOx emissions by more than 99 percent, NOx emissions by approximately 90 percent and particulate emissions by around 50 percent,” Vauraste points out.
Equipped and ready
In March 2012, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) in accordance with its operational plan for the EMSA network of Standby Oil Spill Recovery Vessels (SOSRV) in the Baltic Sea conducted its quarterly drill in the Gulf of Bothnia. In conjunction with the OSR drills, the giant Finnish icebreaker Kontio was deployed.
“Kontio is equipped with a Lamor Free Floating (LFF 100) skimmer, stiff sweep with brush and weir modules, heavy duty oil booms as well as oil transfer pumps. With the use of traditional open water containment booms, of which 500 m can be found on the deck of the vessel, oil is contained by deploying the boom in a U or a J configuration in front of the approaching oil and collected with brush module skimmers on stiff sweeps,” says Vauraste.
Kontio is one of three EMSA stand-by SOSRV’s in the northern Baltic Sea, with a total net storage capacity of 2033m³. Its crew is fully trained in accordance with IMO (International Maritime Organization) OPRC (Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation) level 1 and 2. “These quarterly drills are an important aspect of maintaining skills, readiness and equipment in the event of an OSR operation,” concludes Vauraste.
The Swedish Coast Guard (SCG) and Lamor have long-term relations and the good cooperation has resulted in the joint development of several oil spill response products. SCG had a clear vision and focus about how to ramp up their operational needs and made the strategic decision to invest in large, high-capacity multipurpose oil spill response vessels. A public tender went out with a detailed and highly technical specifications request.
”We were very impressed with Lamor’s response to this tender and our relationship has developed over the years,” says Jan Fälteke, Coordinator Response from SCG’s headquarters Response and Law Enforcement Department, and continues factually: “Lamor stated that they have the solution to our requirements, but that the product was not available yet. For example we then developed the in-built oil recovery system for one of our more recent new-build vessels, which turned out to be the perfect solution. Only a few minor adjustments have been made to the final product. The 90m long umbilical hose is also a result of our good cooperation that completely fulfilled our strict technical requirements.”
“I am very pleased with Lamor’s flexibility and customer service. Moreover, I or any of my colleagues can call or visit Porvoo since the Lamor team is always ready and available, even in challenging scenarios such as requests for adjustments and continuous testing to resolve any technical issues,” says Fälteke.
Fälteke and his colleague Bruno Axelsson (SCG Chief Engineer, Response Department) visited Lamor in February to inspect the testing of Lamor’s side cassettes in heavy viscous oil. “We tested the side cassettes in the early 1990s in Horten, Norway and hence an upgraded version of the side cassettes with more efficient capacities and capabilities that meet todays’ demands,” stated Fälteke.
In-built oil recovery system
Axelsson explains that all equipment is thoroughly tested and commissioned prior to procurement and acceptance. “Usually we test the brush cassettes and pumps separately, but this test at Lamor was one of the largest, most extensive so far. We shipped the entire piping system to Lamor, and tested all equipment involved from recovery through the piping system to finally the storage tanks onboard the vessel.”
SCG wants to improve its vessels with the latest state-of-the art oil spill response equipment. “The risk of an oil spill occurring in the Baltic Sea is increasing, due to the growing traffic, especially the tankers in the Gulf of Finland. A collision or grounding involving one of the large oil tankers would be disastrous in our waters. Our recovery capacity has since last year doubled from 5000 to 10000 tons to meet the threat of the worst case scenario involving a tanker of the magnitude of 200,000 tons, of which we foresee that only one tank is damaged or demolished.”
Lamor’s Rune Högström, COO has worked closely with SCG over the years. “We have cooperated for many years on various projects. That said, I do want to highlight that there is a certain thrill since the demands or requests are always a challenge. Members from SCG work professionally and collegially and are always willing to listen and then experiment with alternative configuration solutions. We share a common goal in having the best available and technologically most advanced OSR equipment.”
“The most recent simulated tests in February in Porvoo were the collection of oil from the water surface pumped into an onboard cargo storage hold, basically a complete onboard system. We used light oil and a bitumen product of up to 1 million cP viscosity,” Högström explains.
SCG – ready and prepared
In addition to oil spill response, SCG also carries out traffic monitoring, 24/7 air surveillance, emergency towing, search, rescue and fire-fighting operations and emergency lightering, e.g. emptying tanks of grounded vessels etc. SCG has 26 coast guard stations, including one flight division. The stations come under the supervision of two regional command centers situated in Stockholm and Gothenburg whilst SCG headquarters are in Karlskrona.
“Being ready and prepared is essential for us at SCG. Currently two new multipurpose vessels are being built to complete the investment in all together four new-builds of which two have been delivered, KBV 031 and KBV032 while KBV 033 and 034 are still under construction. That said one recent newbuild from 2009, specifically KBV 003 has chemical spill capabilities, moreover, all of the vessels have Lamor oil spill recovery LORS systems onboard,” Axelsson explains.
“We aim to increase our capacities in oil recovery operations at night,” Axelsson continues. “Another important area that we are focusing on is improving the response methods and capabilities of oil spill response operations near-shore and inshore. In line with this, we want to simplify the systems used to make them more user-friendly for example through automation in which one person can operate the entire near-shore equipment solo whilst other responders can focus on other issues during an incident,” notes Axelsson.
SCG’s sustainable maritime environment
One of SCG’s primary duties is to work towards achieving a sustainable maritime environment. “We do this on several different levels. First and foremost, we work preventively on reducing oil spill and hazardous substances at sea. But if an accident were to happen, it is our job to ensure that the damage is minimized to safeguard the environment,” says Fälteke.
Traffic across the Baltic Sea has increased along with the volumes of oil being transported. This puts high demands on levels of preparedness for environmental protection. SCG therefore work in partnerships with other countries to develop the ability to handle large volumes of oil spill, tow distressed ships and fight on-board fires. We also work against the spread of contaminated materials, toxic chemicals and radioactive substances, and carry out rescue and response efforts.
“Our aircraft conduct continuous monitoring and are among the world’s most sophisticated surveillance aircraft, and with the help of satellite images we can detect oil spill at an early stage and the oil can be absorbed before it reaches land. With specific operational forecasting software, we can predict when and where a spill will reach the shore and thereby deploy the resources where they are needed,” he says.
Through continuous surveillance using vessels and aircraft SCG works preventively to tackle environmental crimes at sea. We ensure that legislation prohibiting water pollution and dumping is complied with, and we monitor the bird protection areas and seal sanctuaries that are established in Sweden.
Cooperation across borders
Working towards ensuring cleaner and safer seas is an immense task that requires collaboration between multiple players. The sea is a prime concern for everyone, and SCG works very closely with other authorities, organizations and countries.
“We work closely with the Police, Customs and the Swedish Transport Agency. Internationally we work with other countries and international organizations for the development of border protection, crime combating and environmental protection. Extensive work on the marine environment is performed in cooperation with the Baltic countries in the Helsinki Commission, with the North Sea countries in the Bonn Agreement and with the Nordic countries in the Copenhagen Agreement,” Fälteke highlights.
“To promote operational cooperation beyond the EU’s external boarders we participate regularly in international border control operations within Frontex,” he says.
Fälteke continues: “Some other international programs SCG is committed to is the Baltic Sea Region Border Control Cooperation (BSRBCC) which is a partnership between the countries of the Baltic Sea, Norway and Iceland, which aims to simplify procedures for cooperation in border control between the countries. The North Atlantic Coast Guard Forum (NACGF) is a partnership between 18 coast guard organizations from countries around the North Atlantic and Baltic Sea which is working to create effective cross-border cooperation in areas such as drug trafficking, illegal migration, environmental protection, fisheries monitoring, maritime safety and search and rescue.
The vessels and their equipment are important tools for SCG. “Our vessels and boats are being continuously developed with modern technology to ensure the best possible operational capacity for maritime surveillance and environmental protection at sea. We therefore need partners like Lamor to work closely with us,” concludes Axelsson.