Production begins on Matson

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   Shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO has begun construction of two new combination container and roll-on/roll-off (con-ro) vessels for the Hawaii fleet of Honolulu-based Pacific cargo carrier Matson that are scheduled for delivery in the fourth quarter of 2019 and second quarter of 2020, respectively, Matson said in a statement.
   After a small Nov. 29 ceremony at General Dynamics NASSCO’s San Diego shipyard, the cutting of steel plates began, which officially initiated the production work to build both ships.
   Matson said it will call the vessels the “Kanaloa Class” in honor of the ocean deity revered in the native Hawaiian culture, and that both are being named after predecessor ships from the company’s 135-year history.
   The first vessel will be named Lurline — the sixth Matson vessel to carry that name — while the second vessel will be the fifth to bear the name Matsonia.
   “The Kanaloa Class is designed specifically to meet Hawaii’s freight demands while reducing our environmental impact and improving our efficiency for decades to come,” Matson President Ron Forest said.
   The vessels are being built on a 3,500 TEU vessel platform, 870 feet long, with a 114 feet wide beam, a deep draft of 38 feet and enclosed garage space for up to 800 vehicles or breakbulk cargo.
   The new vessels’ design, which NASSCO partnered on with Daewoo Ship Engineering, also includes state-of-the-art green technology features, including a fuel efficient hull design, environmentally safe double hull fuel tanks, fresh water ballast systems and dual-fuel engines, so that they’ll be able to operate at speeds up to 23 knots on either conventional fuel oils or liquefied natural gas (LNG).
   “We’re honored to advance the Matson fleet with two large, modern vessels,” NASSCO President Kevin Graney said.

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