Damen Shiprepair Brest completes refit of Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth
Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth has left DAMEN Shiprepair Brest (DSBr) following a 12-day repair and refit programme. She is the most recent addition to the Cunard fleet, having been delivered in 2010.
The programme was highly intensive with a series of major systems being overhauled or installed. On arrival the ship was placed in DAMEN Shiprepair Brest’s drydock number 3, one of the largest in Europe at 420 metres, and the relevant manufacturers began immediately on maintenance to her stabilisers, ABB Azipods, bow thrusters and water intakes.
Meanwhile, above the waterline work was going on to install twin exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) which, along with all the pipe and ducting work, involved the removal of two cabins to accommodate the additional equipment. Inside the vessel, the refurbishment included a series of cabins and corridors, along with the ship’s spa and part of the retail provision. Ashore, DSBr performed routine maintenance to Queen Elizabeth’s lifeboats, liferafts and tenders, and the yard also cleaned and repainted the hull and topsides of the ship.
The project represented a major logistical operation, with multiple third-party teams working alongside the DSBr personnel and each other. In total, around 250 people were at work on the project. Large quantities of materials flowed on board the vessel while substantial amounts of waste came ashore for disposal as the cabins were refurbished. DSBr’s experienced project management team ensured that everything went smoothly and that a series of large temporary shelters were available for the contractors’ use.
In the event, the programme was completed a day early, with Queen Elizabeth back at her home port of Southampton on the morning of 27th November.
Damen Shiprepair Brest is exceptionally convenient for cruise ship operators that use Southampton. The two locations are just 10-12 hours steaming time apart and have excellent ferry and air links. With its drydocks capable of holding the very largest vessels and a spacious, unconstricted site, it has plenty of room for contractors to store and access their materials and equipment, an important requirement for large-scale projects on a tight deadline. With its physical advantages plus an experienced workforce, it is no surprise that DSBr has cruise ship repair and maintenance bookings up to five years ahead.
Damen Shipyards Group
Damen Shipyards Group operates 35 shipbuilding and repair yards, employing 12,000 people worldwide. DAMEN has delivered more than 6,000 vessels in more than 100 countries and delivers some 160 vessels annually to customers worldwide. Based on its unique, standardised ship-design concept DAMEN is able to guarantee consistent quality.
Damen’s focus on standardisation, modular construction and keeping vessels in stock leads to short delivery times, low ‘total cost of ownership’, high resale values and reliable performance. Furthermore, DAMEN vessels are based on thorough R&D and proven technology.
Damen offers a wide range of products, including tugs, workboats, naval and patrol vessels, high speed craft, cargo vessels, dredgers, vessels for the offshore industry, ferries, pontoons and superyachts.
For nearly all vessel types DAMEN offers a broad range of services, including maintenance, spare parts delivery, training and the transfer of (shipbuilding) know-how. DAMEN also offers a variety of marine components, such as nozzles, rudders, winches, anchors, anchor chains and steel works.
Damen Shiprepair & Conversion (DSC) has a worldwide network of eighteen repair and conversion yards of which twelve are located in North West Europe. Facilities at the yards include more than 50 floating and (covered) drydocks, the largest of which is 420 x 90 metres, as well as slopes, ship lifts and indoor halls. Projects range from the smallest simple repairs through Class’ maintenance to complex refits and the complete conversion of large offshore structures. DSC completes around 1,300 repair and maintenance jobs annually, both at yards as well as in ports and during voyage.