The Port of London Authority (PLA) has sealed a deal to put a new purpose-built survey catamaran on the River Thames. The CTruk MPC19 is set to replace the PLA's long-serving Yantlet as it reaches the end of its service life. The new boat is due to enter service later this year and will continue the PLA Hydrography team's survey work which facilitates safe navigation on the tidal Thames.
The CTruk MPC19 is a hydrodynamically optimised twin-hull design that boosts smooth passage through the water. It also has a low draught for shallow water access and a low air draught so it can get under Thames bridges with ease. The boat, which can accommodate up to 12 personnel, benefits from water-jet propulsion (for a high manoeuvrability); a multi-beam sonar platform; a 4m survey-capable RIB; and top-of-the-range echo sounding systems and ancillary survey equipment. It has a cruise speed of 18kts and survey speed of 2kts.
This type of boat is popular with offshore wind farm support work. Essex-based supplier CTruk will build the FRP composite vessel using a vacuum resin-infusion technique, giving a smooth hull shape and lean body frame, enhancing fuel efficiency.
Captain John Pinder, port hydrographer, said: "This boat should be an excellent addition to our fleet. It offers more space to our busy crew and its fuel efficiency is a bonus that will help us keep costs down. We very much look forward to taking delivery of the craft."
CTruk has built 18 of these multi-purpose catamarans to date, with the popular design racking up thousands of service hours in 24/7 operations in the UK and across Europe.