The hugely successful art gallery MONA and ferry operators Navigators have taken delivery of their state of the art new catamaran ferry ‘MR-1’ (MONA ROMA 1). Built by Incat Tasmania and designed by Chamberlin Marine, MR-1 will transit the route along the Derwent River, between Brooke St Pier in downtown Hobart and the MONA site in Berriedale.
At 33.7m overall (111ft), with unusual lines and a number of very distinctive features, even the full ‘camouflage’ style paint job won’t allow her to go unnoticed. Internally MR-1 continues to impress with three separate bars (including a swanky VIP bar), extra height ceilings, expansive windows that frame the beautiful scenery of the Derwent River and a number of art installations that really are a must see.
MR-1 is constructed in aluminium and runs two resiliently mounted Caterpillar C32 ACERT engines, each producing 1300BHP and spinning a Mikado five bladed propeller via an island mounted Twin Disk MGX 6620 SC gearbox. She holds 7600L of diesel, 1900L of fresh water and 1900L of sullage and will carry 240 passengers in style at a service speed of 24.9 knots.
The innovations delivered by MR-1 emanate from a range of sources, firstly the requirements of a vessel associated with Museum of Old and New Art and the desire for a new, fresh and ‘out of the box’ approach. MONA is not well known for following convention and your standard ferry would not have been a suitable solution.
Key to the final design was the ideas and input of operators Navigators, who sought a vessel designed specifically to meet their needs and used their significant experience to drive the project and ensure they achieved this goal. This included appointing a lesser known designer in Chamberlin Marine who have gained a reputation for innovative thinking and who were willing to dedicate the time and effort required to develop a new concept completely from scratch, in order to meet their needs.
Finally, the wealth of knowledge and experience within Incat Tasmania who were able to deliver a level of craftsmanship and quality not often found on a vessel of this size. The quality of construction on board MR-1 is world class and Incat were able to utilise ideas and innovations developed over decades at the forefront of the high speed ferry industry.
Principle designers Chamberlin Marine teamed up with Revolution Design who completed the construction drawings and a range of detailed design work. “We commenced design work in late May knowing that a vessel delivery date early in the New Year was essential, under such tight time scales teaming up with someone with that level of expertise and a working relationship with the yard was an easy decision.” says Chamberlin Marine Managing Director Kim Chamberlin. “Within only weeks of us delivering the initial design, the team at Revolution had the first drawings issued to the yard and the vessel was taking shape, they did a fantastic job”.
Chamberlin Marines innovative new hull design underwent model testing at the Australian Maritime College facilities in Launceston prior to construction and has demonstrated significant advantages over those conventionally utilised on similar vessels as well as low wash characteristics. The hull form was optimised for load carrying capability in order to efficiently transport the vessels impressive fit out which includes three separate bar and function areas, four open air viewing decks, extensive use of glass, a large and well appointed galley, bespoke furniture, a number of art displays and a grand wheelhouse that will be the envy of skippers everywhere.
MR-1 is a completely unique vessel that sets a new standard in the passenger ferry industry and is sure to become one of the key attractions for visitors to MONA and Hobart.