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HANSA 04-2021

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Ruderpropeller & Pods · Arktische Schifffahrt · Deutsche Flotte · Containersicherheit · Scrapping und IHM · Scrubber-Bilanz · Neue Feeder aus Hamburg · »Ships made in Germany 2020«


SHIPS MADE IN GERMANY »Challenges to which we have adapted« Harald Fassmer, managing director of the Fr. Fassmer Shipyard in Berne, talks about the challenges of the construction of an all-aluminum sea rescue cruiser – and about the rewarding experience of building these ships for the DGzRS In the Corona year 2020, you have delivered one rescue cruiser and layed the keel for another one, while since the start of 2021 the next is already delivered. What does that mean for you under the current conditions? A reason to be proud? Harald Fassmer: Certainly it is a reason to be proud. The DGzRS orders mean a lot to us. This is all the more true at a time when we are also affected by the impact of the pandemic. What makes the »Hamburg« and the 28-meter class of the DGzRS special for you as a shipbuilder? Fassmer: We have already developed the 28-meter class together with the DGzRS from 2014. These newbuildings will replace the 27.5-meter units of the »Berlin« class. Extensive deliberations with the DGzRS inspection and the experienced foremen of the corresponding stations had preceded this. Among the most obvious innovations are the fully enclosed deckhouse (lookout positions for search operations are provided at the aft edge of the superstructure) and a multi-purpose room with on-board hospital, separate from the mess. The stern hull, typical of marine rescue cruisers, houses an eight-meter daughter boat in these rescue units, which has also been further developed based on the forebodies. Were there any challenges from a technical point of view, things that didn’t yet exist in this way on other sea rescue cruisers? Fassmer: One particular challenge for us as a shipyard, for example, is the very complex hull construction made entirely of seawater-resistant aluminum. With a tight network of longitudinal and transverse frames, we can achieve high strength on the one hand and low weight on the other. The double, and in the area of the tanks and Harald Fassmer empty cells even triple outer skin, in conjunction with the self-righting property of these vessels, ensures maximum safety even under extreme operating conditions. The compact design and the very high safety and quality requirements are further challenges to which we have adapted during the many years of cooperation with the DGzRS. With SK 42, number six of the 28-meter class is currently under construction. Is the project on schedule, or has the Corona situation already had an impact? Fassmer: We are on schedule with this newbuilding despite the many Corona-related restrictions. Delivery is scheduled for the fall of this year after completion and successful extensive tests and trials. Nevertheless, we © Fassmer 34 HANSA – International Maritime Journal 04 | 2021

SHIPS MADE IN GERMANY have had to adapt our processes and workflows to the Corona-related protection and hygiene measures. However, we have so far been able to compensate for the construction delays this entailed. What characterizes the relationship between your shipyard and the DGzRS? Fassmer: Trust, admiration, pride and passion: In the many years of our cooperation, we have jointly developed a standard that meets the high requirements of the DGzRS in terms of quality, safety and reliability. This has resulted in a special relationship of trust, which suits the unbureaucratic and leanly structured, purely donationfinanced DGzRS. We observe with admiration the courageous sea rescuers who set sail and save lives under the most adverse operating conditions. We feel proud when we see one of the rescue cruisers we built on the coasts of the North Sea and the Baltic Sea again or when we can show it to our children. And passion with which we build these ships, already in the fifth generation. Is LNG or other alternative fuels an option for future newbuild sea rescue cruisers? What is your assessment? Fassmer: LNG is certainly not a suitable fuel for sea rescue cruisers. The significantly larger ship dimensions required by the LNG tank do not allow for the operational requirements of the DGzRS. If the sea rescue cruiser were built larger, this would also drive up consumption accordingly. The rescue units have long been running on lowsulfur or sulfur-free diesel. In the future, however, e-fuels produced on the basis of green electricity, methanol or even ammonia could be used as an alternative to marine diesel. The starting point is always the generation of hydrogen. We are already working on a new research vessel for the Alfred Wegener Institute that will be equipped with an innovative methanol propulsion system. For the rescue units of the DGzRS, however, alternative fuels will only come into question once there is a nationwide bunker network. Unlike ferries, for example, the rescue cruisers do not always cover the same distance, but must be able to bunker everywhere in order to remain ready for action at all times. Interview: Felix Selzer HANSA – International Maritime Journal 04 | 2021 35

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