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The photo below shows Neptune, a survey vessel doing wind farm related work.  It was first posted here in late July 2019.

As of Monday morning, this vessel has been anchored in Gravesend for over 24 hours.  Previously she was Neptune with that wilder paint job.  EGS loosely expands to “earth sciences & surveying” and a little bit of Latin will get you to ventus as wind, a fitting name for this heavily equipped and much renamed vessel that started out as an ice class fishing trawler way back in 1977.   From what I can tell, she fished until 2008.  Now she’s contributing to the most thorough surveying of the New York Bight and surrounding waters to the east that has ever been done.  I’d love to see some of the bathymetric images she and other exotics have generated in the past few years.

Fleetmate RV Ridley Scott sailed into the sixth boro a bit less than a year ago.

 

All photos, WVD.

 

What’s this?

I’m just trying to figure this out.  My best guess is that suspended from a 20-ton capacity A-frame is a set of underwater hands, a sampling device, a seafloor-drill, all tallied 14 tons of instruments  and tools in a seafloor frame. 

I can’t tell you the division of labor between the equipment lowered/raised through an approximately 10′ x 10′ moon pool by the 90′ derrick and the seafloor drill.  My guess is the the seafloor drill can function at great depth.   Note the Panamanian registry.

All those portlights . . .   relate to the 50+ crew the vessel can accommodate. 

The helideck . . . 62′ diameter, can accommodate helicopters of the Bell 412 type, i.e., up to about 3.5 tons. 

If you didn’t click on the equipment and specifications link earlier, my source for all I pretend to know here, you can click here now.  Since she was anchored in Gravesend Bay yesterday, the tide pushing her stern toward shore, I managed to get my first photos of her stern.   I have seen the vessel, working to amass wind farm bottom terrain data, several times since January 2018.   With the green light to transform South Brooklyn Marine Terminal into a dedicated wind farm construction hub, I suspect some interesting and exotic vessels will be transiting the Narrows in the next few years.

All photos and attempted interpretation, WVD.

Maybe a reader out there can explain how this equipment really works and what super-detailed examples of bathymetric chart of the New York Bight look like.

Wind farm surveys have brought a number of unusual vessels to resupply periodically in areas of the sixth boro.  Ocean Endeavour is a science ship that fits into this set that I’m calling exotics.

Saturday I caught Ocean Endeavour taking her crew of scientists and technicians back out to sea, to their survey work.

Her sheer made me think she was once a whaling harpoon vessel;  the shape of bow and stern made me think she might have been a cable ship.

But in fact, she started life in the British navy as an auxilliary vessel specializing

in moorings and salvage, with such duties as laying and maintenance of underwater targets, navigation marks, moorings and raising sunken vessels.  Click on the next two photos for their sources.  USNS operates similarly tasked vessels, Grasp and Grapple.

From launch in 1986 until 2001, it was RMAS Salmaster (A186).

She’s been working in the New York Bight and as far east as the Vineyard Sound for at least the past six months.

Her sister Gardline vessel is Ocean Researcher.

All photos, WVD, who was happy to finally lay eyes on her.

As she leaves for the North Sea port of Hull, finally .  .

I caught Ocean Researcher.  She’s spent much of the summer and fall until now doing survey work in advance of wind farm leasing and development in the New York Bight.

Seeing the vessel confirmed that she’s not a new vessel . . .  built in Devon, SW England, in 1985.

Her original name was RRS Charles Darwin.

RRS expands to Royal Research Ship.  The first vessel of that organization, built in 1901, was RRS Discovery, carrying among others Robert F. Scott and Ernest Shackleton.

The Gardline Group operates several dozen vessels around the world.

After a final salute from the Statue,

Ocean Researcher heads across the big pond.  Next stop Hull, East Yorkshire, England.  ETA . . . Boxing Day.   Bon voyage.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

For starters, yes I do feel I’ve dropped the ball and missed taking and publishing fotos of such sixth boro events as the final move of the Willis Avenue Bridge and City of Water Day.  If anyone has fotos to share, I’d love to see them.

The North Country here means the St. Lawrence and beyond.  The white-helmeted gent does seem to be leading and gentle giant on a leash, not even having to

tug as BBC Rio Grande (ex-Beluga Gravitation, 2008) traverses the Iroquois Lock.  All the Wisconsin-built Staten Island ferries had to make their way through this lock.  Anyone have a foto of a big orange ferry passing here?  I previously wrote about these locks here and here.

It hardly seems possible their beam would squeeze through.

William Darrell ferries loads of improbable size across the international border between Cape Vincent and Wolfe Island, Ontario.  86 windmills now churn in the breezes near this northeast tip of Lake Ontario, not without controversy.

The “H” on the stack stands for Horne, the family that has operated this ferry since 1861.  This particular vessel entered service in 1953.

Bowditch (ex-Hot Dog, 1954) works out of Clayton, NY; as do

Maple Grove (left) and the unidentified “landing craft/freight ship” on the right.

More upcountry workboats tomorrow.  All fotos here by Will Van Dorp.

For now, some announcements:

Kudos to the ArtemisOceanRowing (scroll way down) crew who left New York in mid-June;  they broke a 114-year-old  record when they arrived at Isles of Scilly this weekend.

And finally, I’ve started a new blog called My Babylonian Captivity.  Exactly 20 years ago today, Iraqi forces invaded Kuwait, the US entered the current era, and I became trapped and remained so for over four months.  It’s a different kind of blog–all text– but I plan to chunk it out day by day or week by week until December.  Please send the link along to folks who you think will enjoy it.  It’s all nonfiction, the experience as filtered by me.

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Graves of Arthur Kill

Click on image below to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

Seth Tane American Painting

Read my Iraq Hostage memoir online.

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.

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