(Livorno, IT) Herbert Engineering served as a consultant to the salvage refloating operation of the drydock Meditteraneo and the research vessel Urania lying inside. A full article describing the operation can be found here. During the lifting operation a year earlier the vessel listed to the portside and fell from the keel blocks. In the subsequent response a leak caused the pump rooms to flood which put all drydock pumping and control systems out of service.

An Italian naval architect, Alessio Gnecco, of Stige Maritime was hired by the dock manager to prepare the refloating operation, with the Urania to be kept stable on the dock floor in the position she originally fell in. To assist in this task he obtained the cooperation of Herbert Engineering, to develop a refloating sequence and the design of the stabilizing devices.

On September 15, 2016 the refloating operation was kicked off with HEE managing director Luca Letizia attending to monitor stability, trim, list and stresses with HECSalv and to suggest corrective actions should they be found advisable. The refloating operation was a complete success, with the dock safely floating about 12 hours after pumps were first started. The photo shows the assembled team for the refloating operation, including HEC’s Luca Letizia. A video showing the full operation can be found here.


(Alameda, CA)  HEC has carried out innovative work across the broad range of issues involved with adopting the use of LNG fuel in ships.  Concept and bidding designs with specifications have been prepared for several LNG fueled vessel designs.  We assisted ABS with the preparation of their Technical Advisory on LNG Bunkering.  HEC has provide plan approval and technical assistance to owners building LNG ready vessels.  HEC has analyzed the design and cost issues related to fuel selection in the new ECA era including fuel choices MGO, HFO with scrubbers and LNG fuel.  Our white paper presenting the results of this analysis is available here. As the cost of fuel has been changing the lowest cost fuel choice has been changing, pointing to the fact that careful engineering and cost analysis should be carried out before any owner makes a fuel choice commitment as the cost differences can be significant and vary by vessel type and service. HEC has made several presentations to technical and shipping conferences on the impacts of LNG fuel on ship design. The impacts may be more than some owners expect.


(Annapolis, MD)  HEC has completed the concept design of the new National Security Multi-mission Vessel (NSMV) for the U.S. Maritime Administration. The vessel is intended to be the common design for the new training ships for the five state maritime academies in the US to replace the existing older vessels. It will have state of the art diesel electric propulsion, twin engine rooms for safety and for teaching purposes (one engine room running and the other for teaching), accommodations for up to 600 cadets and 100 operating crew, faculty and support staff. Extensive classrooms, training workshops and lab space is provided to give cadets the latest in teaching tools and technology. The vessels are also outfitted to act as command and support vessels for emergency response and humanitarian assistance, like what was done by the existing training vessels for hurricanes Katrina and Sandy and for the Haiti earthquake. For this purpose the vessels can expand the number of persons accommodated onboard and is provided with RoRo cargo space, cargo crane and deck space for containers and special modules.


(Philadelphia, PA)  HEC has opened an office at Philly Shipyard (formerly APSI) to provide the owner’s supervision staff for the (4) tankers under construction for the Kinder Morgan subsidiary American Petroleum Tankers (APT-KM).  The HEC office will provide all the inspectors including steel, coating and machinery for the project, which will last until the end of 2017.  HEC will also be providing technical support to APT-KM throughout the duration of the project for design and construction issues that arise.  This work follows on HEC’s previous site office at NASSCO shipyard for the (5) State Class tankers now operated by APT-KM.