Factors at Play in RoRo Vessels Selling

RoRo vessels are ships that are used to carry wheeled cargo like automobiles, trucks, trains etc. An acronym for Roll on and Roll off, the RoRo vehicles are named thus as the cargos here are loaded and unloaded by way of rolling on and rolling off through built in ramps.

Kinds of RoRO vessels generally found are day and night ferries, pure trailer vessels and trailer ferries with accommodation for drivers. For the RoRo vessels that cross the oceans exclusively carrying cars and trucks are known as Pure Car Carriers (PCC) and Pure Truck & Car Carriers (PCTC) respectively.

roro vessels for sale

Unlike other cargos, the cargos of RoRo vessels are measured in lanes in metres (LM). With a slight variation to RoRo vessels Ropax vessels are made. Here passenger accommodation is added.

Due to its easier loading and unloading process and better integration capacity with other transport development the RoRO vehicles are normally speedier.

The RoRo industry has shown balanced responses to market demands inspite of the demands of quality service at right frequency and degree of capacity. The global RoRO market has become more fragmented with more number of small capacity of exporters coming in.

From various worldwide surveys done on the demand of RoRo shipping services, the decision making factors can be categorized as the following:

Quantitative factors:

  • related to route ( frequency, transit time, capacity, number of calls)
  • factors related to costs (freight rates, insurance, etc.)
  • service factors (reliability and delays, risk of damages and losses, emergency handling capabilities, documents and ability of tracing etc.).

Qualitative factors:

  • tradition
  • flexibility
  • measure of responsiveness to flaws
  • information available during transport
  • cooperation and personal contact
  • ease of administration

The specific choice factors that work in the shipping services, as per data gathered from large number of shipping services companies are, long terms commitment in the specific market, willingness of carriers for long-term contract, technical characteristics of the vessel, reputation regarding damage to cargo, service frequency, agreeability to negotiate flexible contracts for variable circumstances, freight rate, reputation of punctuality, transit time, marketing activities and problem responsiveness.

As port plays a big role in shipping services the following attributes of ports control demand of services: proximity of port to the point of production or delivery, costs of port, reputation for strike record, cargo facilities, traditional links with the shipping line and its promotional activities, speed of port operations, port accessibility.

Their exists a dilemma in prioritizing the port or the vessel when choosing a RoRo vessel service. Some believe that the port is the chief deciding factor and some think it is the carrier. Apart from that, individual perception of shipping managers and buyers has a big role in final decision making of buying a service. It has been generally noted that shipping managers have a conservative approach and only take calculated risk and that too occasionally. In selection of carriers and ports they tend to go for personal contacts and perception formed according to their experience in the sector and abilities. Actual data of performance generally has a secondary influence in the decision making.

As RoRo vessels market comprise of a big chunk of the shipping business, the decision making process here is based more on individual perception and conservative risk averse behaviour pattern than on actual findings.

Reasons to Invest In The Norwegian ROPAX and RORO Vessels

The Norwegian Maritime Industry has been ruling one of the world’s biggest merchant fleets for a period of more than 150 years. This is quite unbelievable and unacceptable given that, the country has a population of fewer than 6 million people according to the 2016 statistics. And what’s more? The Norwegian Government aims to turn it into the world’s Maritime capital as well as the most environment-friendly solutions provider of this century. Now, how is that possible? Well, the following points will give you a brief idea regarding the influence of this particular industry on the economic growth of the nation besides delineating the reasons why you it is recommendable to invest in this large-scale business.

Ropax Vessels For Sale

Availability of Experienced Ship Brokers

You will find a plethora of ship broker companies in Norway that are always on their toes to give you the best deals for advanced vessels. Instead of searching for fine cruises and ferries for sale in the market, you can always contact a ship brokering agency and let them do all the research. You can rest assured they will keep a tab on lucrative deals in the market and provide you with the details so you can pick one according to your budget and preferences.

Fleet of Technologically Advanced Vessels

The 1970’s marked the beginning of the Norwegian Offshore Fleet. It started with the petroleum operations on the continental shelf even during adverse climatic conditions and poor working environment. However, hard work never goes in vain and today, the country possesses one of the largest and most technologically advanced offshore fleets in the world. In fact, the domestic market has laid the foundation for companies to take their business beyond the Norwegian continental shelf. Today, about half of the industry’s revenue comes from outside operations. This trend will sprout better results in future when the companies start exploring the challenges beyond the safe limits of the continental shelf.

The Maritime Industry influences economic growth to a great extent

Large-scale shipping companies, equipment manufacturers, shipbuilding yards, universities, Research and Development centres and regulatory bodies comprise the Maritime Industry of Norway. It accounted for 5.5% of the nation’s GDP in 2009 and it is also ranked second in the nation’s export industry, the oil and gas sector being the first ones. Therefore, it is needless to say that this particular industry is growing by leaps and bounds and this is just the right time to invest in this profitable business.

Beneficial to the environment

The sea is one of the most environment-friendly modes of transport and Norway leads in this particular sector. About 90% of world trade is conducted via sea transport and it accounts for a little more than 2% of greenhouse gas emissions. A single ship has can replace about a hundred trucks thus reducing traffic congestion, accidents and greenhouse gas emissions to large degrees. Therefore the Norwegian Government is betting on the Maritime industry to take this small nation at the top of global charts with respect to environment-friendliness.

Smart Ships with all Modern Amenities

It is needless to say here that the Norwegian fleet is one of the most advanced in the whole world. The shipping companies are engaged in several seagoing activities like the transportation of chemicals, gas, petroleum products, rolling stock, vehicles and so on. You will come across advertisements of ROPAX and RORO vessels for sale every now and then. And, those ships are quite advanced in terms of technology. For example, they are leading in the aspect of gas-powered vessels and utilisation of alternative energies on board.

If you are a possible investor in this industry, it is advisable not to waste more time in indecisiveness. Contact a reliable as well as experienced ship brokering company and start investing in water transport. Let your ship raise a storm in the Norwegian or international waters.

Take a Look at the Safety Norms of Ro-Ro Ferries

The roll-on/ roll-off aka Ro-Ro ships are one the successful kinds operating today. These ships are extremely popular on many shipping routes, courtesy its flexibility and capability to integrate with other transport systems. Ro-Ro ships play a crucial role as a car/passenger ferry, especially on the short-sea routes.

However, despite its commercial success and enormous popularity, there have been a few fatal accidents involving several Ro-Ro ships. To put an end to these unfortunate occurrences IMO has deployed a set of amendments on Ro-Ro ships. These amendments keep eyes on the safety of Ro-RO ships in order to stop re-occurrences of such mishaps. These are as follows-



The Development of Ro-Ro:

The concept of the modern ro-ro ship has been borrowed from the steam train that was invented around 100 years back. Ships were built for taking trains across rivers that were too wide for bridges. The traditional ships were equipped with rails that allowed trains to move straight into the ships.

For people who are into export/import business, ro-ro ferry offers several advantages when compared with traditional ships. The ro-ro ship has appreciable speed. Lorries or cars can drive straight onto to a ro-ro ship at one port and come out at other port within a few minutes after the ship has been docked.

Ro-ro ships can be well integrated with other transport systems like containers. The transportation time is lesser than traditional ships. This way the efficiency of a shipper has increased.

ISM Code:

IMO at its 16th assembly adopted the resolution called A.647 (16) in October 1989. The resolution offers guidelines on the conduction safe operations and preventing pollution on ships.

The aim of these guidelines was to offer those responsible for the operation of ships with a framework for proper implementation, development and analysis of safety and pollution prevention management as per good practice.

The objective of the 16th assembly was for ensuring safety, preventing human injury, loss of life and avoiding damage to the environment. The guidelines were based on general objectives and principles for promoting the evolution of sound management and operation practices within the industry as a whole.

The guidelines figured out the importance of existing international instruments as crucial mediums to prevent pollution and maritime casualties. The guidelines include sections safety and environmental policy.

SOLAS Conference:

The SOLAS conference took place in November 1995 where a series of amendments took place regarding safety norms for ro-ro ships. The conference was organized following the mishap of a ro-ro ferry Estonia.

The important changes related to the stability of the ro-ro ship were made in Chapter II-1. The SOLAS 90 damage stability standard was applied to ships that were built in 1990. The stability standard was implemented to existing ships as per the agreed phase-in programme.

The conference also adopted a new regulation called 8-2. This regulation comprises of special requirements for ro-ro ships that carry more than 400 passengers. The regulation is intended to phase out ships that have one compartment standard.

These are some of the safety norms for ro-ro ferries. When ships operate, the concerned navigation department has to keep a copy of ISM code on board.

International Maritime Organization & Ro-Ro Safety

The Roll-on/ Roll-off ship is one of the successful kinds operating today. Apart from its flexibility, its capability to integrate with other transport systems and speed of operation has turned it hugely popular on many shopping routes. One of the substantial roles of Ro-Ro ships is to act as a passenger ferry, especially on the short-sea routes. The Ro-Ro safety and security have been empowered by IMO for ensuring shield-protection of the sea passengers. Take a look at following to know more with the same:

Ro-ro ship safety

The Development of Ro-Ro Ships

The development of Ro-Ro ship can be traced some one hundred years back. Those ships were built for transporting trains across rivers. The ships were fitted with rails. The trains rolled straight on to the ship. The ship sailed across the river and reached another rail berth where the train rolled off again.

During the World War II, Ro-Ro ships were built for carrying tanks and other military equipments to battlefields. The Ro-Ro principle was applied on merchant ships during 1940s. The principle became popular on short sea ferry routes.

Ro-Ro ship offers a few advantages over traditional ship. The prime advantage, which a ship gets from the Ro-Ro ship, is the speed. Cars and heavy moving vehicles can drive straight on to this ship and can roll off easily at other port.

Detection of the Problem Areas

Ro-Ro ships have become successful at carrying various loads. However, some experts have expressed their concerns regarding safety.

In case of traditional ship, the hull is divided with transverse bulkheads, which are watertight. If the hull is damaged in an accident, the bulkheads will prevent or slowdown the inrush of water. The Ro-Ro ship has unpierced transverse bulkheads that offer obstacle.

The cargo access at the bow and stern of the Ro-Ro ship has a potential weak spot. With the passage of time, the side doors may get twisted or damaged when the doors serves the function of a ramp.

The movement of cargo on the deck can affect the stability of the ship. If the hull is damaged, water can rush inside rapidly causing major damage. The large superstructure can be affected by bad weather or wind easily.

IMO’s Activities in the Areas of Ro-Ro Safety

IMO was formed in 1959. Since its formation, IMO has held various conventions for addressing the safety issues of vessels including Ro-Ro ships.

In 1972, IMO framed the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea. The regulation suggests some steps, which a Ro-Ro owner should take for enhancing safety when the ship travels through narrow channels, straits, etc.

The measures explained in the 1972 regulation have become successful in reducing the chances of head-on collisions. During the 1960s, the number of collisions went down drastically when ships operated in the English Channel.

Other conventions that speak about safety norms are the International Convention on Load Lines of 1966, the International Convention for Safe Containers of 1972, etc.

Ro-Ro ships have helped ship owners to transport people and goods from one place to another place at short time. Some safety issues exist with the design. IMO has framed a few regulations that have reduced the chances of head-on collisions.

Diesel Engines and their Usage in the Marine Vessels

The inventor of diesel engine is Rudolf Diesel. Although, he invented the engine, but to keep it functioning on board vessels, marine engineers work hard. The uses of diesel engines are many and they vary from ships to ships. Diesel engines are also technically known as compression ignition in the shipping industry.

fast ferries are for sale

To operate and maintain a diesel engine, it is required to understand how it works. Diesel engines basically work on simple principle and prove to be reliable if maintained properly.

Ways to classify diesel engines

  • Speed – Classifications are made on slow/ medium and high speed
  • Usage – Locomotive engines, automotive engines, marine engines
  • Operation – 2-stroke engine, 4-stroke engine, double acting, single acting
  • Cylinder Arrangements – vertical, horizontal, vee, radial

It can be observed from the classification that marine engines are used in ships, boats, submarines and so on. In the marine industry, both 2 and 4 stroke engines are used. The low speed two-stroke engines are generally used for the key propulsion or for turning the propeller of the ships. The 4-stroke high speed diesel engines are used for providing auxiliary power.

2-Stroke and 4-Stroke Engines

Let’s get an overview on the 2 stroke engine first. There are a variety of 2-stroke engines. The popular example is uniflow type where air is introduced inside the cylinder through the ports and the valve used for exhaust.

The working cycle of 2-stroke engine:

  • Exhaust and Inlet
  • Compression and Power

Parts of a 2-stroke diesel engine are:inside of ferries

  • Inlet ports
  • Piston ring locating pin
  • Exhaust ports or exhaust valves
  • Scavenge blower

Now, let us understand the basics of a 4 stroke engine. The operating cycle of a 4-stroke diesel engine is:

  • Induction – The exhaust valve gets closed, the inlet valve gets opened. The first downward pressure of the piston pulls fresh air into the cylinder.
  • Compression – The inlet and exhaust valves, both are closed. On the 1st upward pressure of the piston, the air is compressed by heating the air. The fuel is instilled just prior to the piston arrive at Top Dead Centre (TDC).
  • Power – The exhaust valves and inlet; both remain closed. The piston is forced downward when the fuel ignites in the cylinder
  • Exhaust – The exhaust valve is open and the inlet valve is closed. The piston reaches the cylinder pushing out the exhaust gases out of the cylinder.

Each engine has a particular valve opening and closing time based on the operating requirements of the engine. The timing for valve opening and closing also depends on whether it is naturally aspirated or turbocharged. In 4 stroke cycle, there is 1 power stroke for each 2 revolutions of the crankshaft. To turn the propeller, the power stroke is used.

Marine Engine Components

Diesel engines include many components and systems. All these parts serve specific functions. These components and systems range from small nuts to comprehensive cooling or fuel systems. Some of the basic engine components are Cylinder head, Block, Inlet valve/s, Fuel lift pump, Camshaft, Flywheel, Turbo charger, Crankshaft, Air cleaner, Cylinder liners, Lubricating oil pump, Alternator and more.

All marine vessels such as fast ferries, cruises, RoRo vessels, etc. are equipped with diesel engines. A good number of fast ferries are for sale in Norway. Rely on a professional ship broker to purchase.

Design and Feasibility of Modern of RoRo and Ropax Vessels

Decades ago, a few dedicated RoRo vessels were operated along with multi-purpose ferry services to reduce the on-road traffic. By the end of 90’s, the difference between these two segments blurred as new vessels were invented. These new, bigger and faster ships, called as RoPax vessels offer more space, comfy accommodation, separate vehicle terminals, easy loading unloading and better features as compared to previous generation ships.

RoRo vessels

Contemporary RoRo and RoPax Vessels

Roll on/ Roll off vessels have continuously evolved from the older generation ferries. Passengers and vehicles have different requirements and individual demands on ship space and access. Thus, the architectures and engineering of these ships go through continuous changes.

Depending on the route the ship is plying and the market it is serving, the two RoRo concepts came into existence:

  • The RoPax vessels are ships that are basically designed to load trailers and where there are accommodations for the drivers and sometimes have additional spaces for some passengers.
  • The cruise ferry is a ship that possesses the features of Ro-Pax vessel and cruise liner. Many passengers travel for the pleasure voyage, not leaving the ship and staying at the destination port only for a few hours, whereas others travel for the sake of transportation.

RoRo/ RoPax, prevailing sea states and distances

Despite the availability of low fare air travels and low-cost car rentals, the seasonal demand for RoPax vessels have not demeaned. On short distances, which can be covered within a couple of hours, cabin accommodation for passengers is normally limited and aircraft style seating is more popular. Based on the routes, sailing times vary.

These ships can swiftly travel through unprotected waters and can also overcome severe climate and rough sea conditions. When the ships cover medium distances, the travel time is more than 6 hours and night stay on the ship may be involved. During such trips, cabin accommodation facility for passengers is essential.

Some of the technologies applied to perk up competitiveness of RoPax and RoRo vessels for sales are as follows:

  • Quantification of target market
  • Auto preparation of ship pre-loading plans
  • Installation of an information management system
  • Application of an e-book system
  • Technologies to assist speedy ship turnaround in Port
  • Integrated trailers management on terminals

Factors to be examined

The factors to be examined include ramps; quays; access bridges for RoRo and passenger traffic. One must also investigate land installations which include passenger facilities, space for loading and unloading of vehicles, effects of future climate changes, technical design, security and safety requirements. Requirements for upgrading existing terminals and new terminals should also be taken into consideration.

In order to meet the needs of RoRo market, vessels are designed with contemporary features, greater capacity, upgraded berths, terminals and ramps. The final production of the vessel is based on the guidelines and recommendations for the design and operation of both RoPax and RoRo terminals

Functionality and Uses of RoRo and RoPax Vessels

Whether you have passengers on the ship for leisure or a combo of passengers and vehicles, comfortable features and top-notch facilities are essential to stay ahead of the competition in today’s market. Fast loading and unloading; flexible cargo solutions and separate as well as safe zones for passengers and cargo are important.

RoPax and RoRo ships sail on every ocean and their uses are extensive. Despite the fact that these vessels come in many shapes and sizes, the trend goes on for larger ships with better options for quick loading and unloading.

Ropax Vessels

RoPax is a short form used to illustrate ships with roll-on and roll-off features for the carriage of commercial vehicles and private cars with the provision to accommodate large numbers of passengers separately, for shorter voyages. In this regard, the word “RoPax” means “passenger RoRo vessel.

As these ships contain features that are a mix of both passenger and cargo, changes in concept and size may lead to new challenges for terminal designs. When the size of the ship increases, the stress increases on both quay equipment and quays, as well as sea floor corrosion because of strong thrusters. The RoPax and RoRo vessels are predicted to flourish even more in the upcoming years.

Especially in Europe, the huge potential for this booming usage of RoPax and RoRo vessels is mainly to reduce the traffic on roads. ‘Highway at Sea’ is the only ‘highway’ in the world which has no traffic jams. Most likely, marketers are trying to give it a try in a better way.

Objectives of the Operational Team

Today’s RoRo terminals contain large spaces dedicated for storage of trailers and cars, exclusively. RoPax ships comprise both stern quarter ramps and stern ramps. For better capacity of loading an unloading vehicles, these new RoRo and RoPax vessels can also have bow and side ramps.

New terminal layouts and facilities will be needed with combined RoPax ships. In some instances, the terminal locations can also be changed to provide safety to the passengers, both for driving and walking. A big challenge for combined terminals is that they require more space.

With the increasing focus over the usage of RoPax and RoRo for numerous purposes, both on domestic and international routes will fetch new requirements for these features and facilities, with new risks. Therefore, risk assessment on the combined terminals is the prime need of the hour.

When it comes to providing safe, well-organized and cost-effective operations of the vessels, the designers, operators and owners of RoPax and RoRo terminals and infrastructure follow a set of operational rules globally. The guidance contains topics and information in addition to the existing standards. The topics covered are of great help to engineers, designers as well as operators.