Estonia’s Baltic Workboats has announced that construction and sea trials have now been completed for the first of its new 15-metre aluminium wave-piercing pilot boat, with excellent results being reported by those involved.
Named AHTO-14 and already in the hands of her new owner, the latest in Baltic’s wave-piercing series has an overall length of 14.95 metres, with maximum beam of 4.50 metres and claims to deliver ‘top-of-the-segment seakeeping capability and ride comfort’.
AHTO-14 features a complete propulsion system from CJR Propulsion, who analysed the projected performance using lifting surface methods and quasi-steady state analysis of the propeller blades. During the design process, CJR investigated over 20 possible propeller iterations using existing CFD analysis of similar hull forms before the final fully optimised set-up was chosen.
“As with all pilot boat projects, ensuring the propeller and stern gear is designed to withstand the harshest operating conditions is vital. With Baltic, we were asked to ensure maximum propeller efficiency, minimum noise, vibration and cavitation, whilst also meeting the vessel’s design speed. The finished result met or exceeded all our expectations, so we are delighted to have another satisfied customer,” commented Simon Lewis, Head of CFD and Propeller Design.
AHTO-14 also has a number of additional bespoke features, developed specifically for her owner, including a hydraulic rescue platform at the aft of the vessel. In light of this and other special requirements, particular attention was paid to keeping her draft to a minimum, with the finished vessel coming in at only 0.85 metres.
Another focus for the owner was pilot safety due to the dangerous working environments that the pilots are subjected to. In response, the wheelhouse windshield was completely redesigned to maximise visibility and safety.
AHTO-14 is powered by twin Volvo Penta D13MH marine diesel engines, each producing 368 kW @ 1800 rpm, using ZF marine transmissions through CJR’s fixed pitch MRKPilot propellers to propel her to above 27 knots.