By: Johnray Strickland
HOUSTON – Thrustmaster brings water jet manufacturing to the U.S. and becomes the leading manufacturer of commercial water jet propulsion in the nation.
Thrustmaster is one of only five marine waterjet manufacturers in the world building water jets up to 5,500 hp (4,000 kW).
As offshore oil and gas exploration continues to move into deeper waters, drilling deeper wells, the demands on fast supply vessels has advanced the need for equipment that will meet the requirements of dynamic positioning and station keeping.
To meet the demands of large scale, commercial vessel applications Thrustmaster has introduced two new models to the waterjet product lineup. The new 400 / 450 series Thrustmaster water jets extend the power range to 8,500 hp (6,400kW) accommodating vessels of over 230 ft. (70 m) in length.
The new models stay true to the exclusive stainless steel jet pump configuration using Thrustmaster’s proven axial flow design. The stainless steel casting impeller configuration results in higher thrust throughout the speed range and unrivalled cavitation resistance.
A fast supply vessel can now be equipped with Thrustmaster’s water jets and Thrustmaster’s retractable steerable thrusters in the bow of the vessel for a complete propulsion package from one supplier.
The retractable tunnel thrusters , available in hydraulic or mechanically driven options, inherit all the benefits of a typical tunnel thruster application such as docking, slow speed maneuvering, emergency steering and station keeping at zero or slow forward speed with the added ability of extending down past the bottom of the vessel to assist in controlled, azimuth propulsion to assist in station keeping.
The manufacturing of the Thrustmaster waterjet product range in Houston, TX is a significant extension of Thrustmaster’s existing portfolio of commercial thruster models. Thrustmaster’s continued growth has fostered a boost in the job market for the U.S. marine manufacturing industry.
Thrustmaster’s 2009 investment of $40 million in a new state-of-the-art 200,000 sq ft thruster manufacturing facility laid the groundwork for this latest chapter in Thrustmaster’s quest to become the leading supplier of marine propulsion and maneuvering equipment, which now includes the ability to produce large orders of water jets.
As Joe Bekker, President of Thrustmaster, explained during the opening ceremony of the facility, “What you are looking at is a large plant to build large thrusters. We are in the thruster business and we mean to stay here in the thruster business for the long haul.”
Thrustmaster’s water jets to be sold in Europe, North America and South America.
Each water jet benefits from the support of Thrustmaster’s established global network of sales, spare parts, service and support that includes Thrustmaster operated service locations in Houston, Louisiana, Brazil, Europe, Dubai, and Singapore.
For over 30 years, Thrustmaster has been providing heavy duty thru-hull azimuthing thrusters, deck-mounted propulsion units for barges, retractable thrusters, tunnel thrusters, and the patented Portable Dynamic Positioning System to the offshore, and marine markets.
The entire product lineup is designed and manufactured in-house by a complete engineering department for mechanical, hydraulic, and electrical design.
The Thrustmaster waterjet lineup includes:
- 100 Series Water jets are available in seven model sizes ranging from 134 hp to 900 hp (100kW to 670kW) to accommodate vessels from 6m up to 20m. Supported by simple mechanical and electronic control system options.
- 200 Series Water jets are available in four model sizes ranging from 536 hp to 3,352 hp (400kW to 2500kW) to accommodate vessels from 15m up to 45m with stainless steel jets supported by a complete range of electronic controls with joystick docking.
- 300 Series Water jets are available in two model sizes ranging from 1,743 hp to 5,364 hp (1300kW to 4000kW) to accommodate vessels from 30m up to 60m with stainless steel jets supported by a complete range of electronic controls with joystick docking.
- NEW 400/450 Series Water jets are available in two model sizes up to 8,582 hp (6,400kW) to accommodate large vessels with a complete range of electronic controls with joystick docking.