More than 900 years after the Norman conquest of England, another Norman has reached the English Channel in conquest of the port of Dover. There were no harmful intentions this time.
The Norman Arrow is a brand new Incat 112 m wave-piercing catamaran by U.K.-based LD (Louis Dreyfus) Lines for the ferry cross channel routes between England and France. The fast vessel, designed by Revolutionary Design and built by Incat in Tasmania, has been classified by Det Norske Veritas. It is able to reach a speed of approximately 39 knots at 600 DWT.
The design is composed of two slender hulls connected by a bridging section with center bow structure at forward end. Each hull is divided into 10 vented, watertight compartments divided by transverse bulkheads. Two compartments in each hull are prepared as fuel tanks with additional strengthening.
Propulsion power is ensured by four resiliently mounted MAN 28/33 D
diesel engines, each rated 9000 kW. The catamaran also features four
Wärtsilä LJX 1500SR waterjets, configured for steering and reverse. Power transmission is performed by four ZF NR2H 60000 gearboxes with reduction ratio suited for optimum jet shaft speed. Electricity is provided by four MAN marine brushless, self-excited alternators, with nominal 320 kW electric power. The alternators are arranged for automatic start-up and paralleling, while the automation maintains one
alternator as a standby set.
Norman Arrow also counts on three hydraulic power packs — one forward and two aft. All are alarmed for low level, high temperature, filter clog and low pressure. The catamaran has a passenger capacity of 1200 people including crew. As for motorized traffic, the capacity is 30 freight vehicles plus 195 cars, for a total of 417 cars.
LD Lines explained that at almost 11 000 gross tons, the new craft is one of the largest vessels built by Incat and the first-ever freight-carrying highspeed vessel to operate across the Dover Strait.
Norman Arrow is now in daily service between Dover, U.K., and Boulogne, France, as well as being the first Incat 112 m to operate in Europe. The ship arrived at the port of Dover at the end of May 2009 after a threeweek delivery voyage from Hobart, Tasmania. The journey included calls into Fremantle, South West Australia, Port Victoria in the Seychelles, a transit through the Suez Canal and a final call into Valletta, Malta. Captain Nick Dunn, master for the voyage from Hobart, said that the vessel performed admirably throughout the voyage.
LD Lines expects to enhance the new Dover-Boulogne service with its new fast ferry, as the frequency has already increased from two to six return sailings daily.
The modern Norman conqueror carries all types of tourist traffic in addition to freight, including cars, caravans, motor homes, motorcycles, coaches and foot passengers.