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Giant boat docks in harbour to be fitted with robotic technology

PUBLISHED: 19:04 26 March 2018 | UPDATED: 09:11 27 March 2018

The Ievoli Ivory docked in Lowestoft harbour on Sunday afternoon. PICTURE: Debbie Girling

The Ievoli Ivory docked in Lowestoft harbour on Sunday afternoon. PICTURE: Debbie Girling

Archant

An impressive offshore support ship from Italy is docked in a Suffolk harbour to be fitted with state of the art robotic underwater technology.

The ship sailed in from the Italian port of Ravenna. PICTURE: Debbie GirlingThe ship sailed in from the Italian port of Ravenna. PICTURE: Debbie Girling

The Ievoli Ivory, owned by Marnavi SpA, an Italian shipping company, sailed into Lowestoft from the Italian port of Ravenna at 3.30pm on Sunday and includes a helipad as part of its arsenal of functions.

The ship is in Lowestoft due to a new partnership between James Fisher Marine Services (JFMS) and Next Geosolutions, companies which specialise in working with subsea (underwater) services and engineering.

The boat, built in 2015, is due to be fitted with specialist ROVs (remotely operated underwater vehicle) giving the ship more capacity to do underwater jobs while offshore.

The companies said the boat would be fitted with technology including the Triton XLX work-class ROV, and other integrated subsea, survey and positioning technology which are able to cope with even the most difficult offshore operation.

The Ievoli Ivory docked in Lowestoft on Sunday. PICTURE: Next UKCSThe Ievoli Ivory docked in Lowestoft on Sunday. PICTURE: Next UKCS

The multi-purpose supply ship sails under the Italian flag, and was built in the Selah shipyard in Turkey.

It is 90 metres long and 18 metres wide, and weighs approximately 4,300 tonnes as dead weight and can travel at 14 knots at full speed.

The ship also has room for 87 sailors on board, although only nine get the luxury of their own bedroom.

Not just for working under the waves, the boat boasts a day room lounge, a smoking room, and a gym as well as being fitted with satellite TV.

Perry Balls, director at Next Geosolutions, the parent company, said: “The partnership with James Fisher Marine Services is another example of the local supply chain working together and, in turn, supporting the prosperity of the local community with one of our key group assets arriving in the region.”

Ian Hughes, managing director of JFMS subsea division, said: “We’re delighted to form this partnership and are very excited to be working with Next Geosolutions. We’ve already had a huge amount of interest from clients and the Ievoli Ivory will not only increase our capabilities across the subsea inspection, repair and maintenance field, but also adds to our safety-first ethos.”

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