14 May 2013

Aranda in Helsinki, 9 May 2013


IMO 8802076
Built 1989, Wärtsilä Marine Helsinki shipyard, Finland
Tonnage 1 734 GT
Length 59,20 m
Width 13,80 m
Draugth 5,00 m
12-13 crew
27 passengers (researchers)
2 Wärtsilä Vasa diesels, combined 3 000 kW
1 propeller
1 bow thruster
1 stern thuster
Speed 13,5 knots (maximum), 10,5 knots (service)

The Aranda is an ice-reinforced research vessel owned by the Finnish Environmental Institute (Suomen ympäristökeskus, SYKE for short). She is the third Finnish research vessel with the name; the first was a former passenger steamer that only carried out one research voyage before the breakout of World War II. The second was completed by the Valmet shipyard in Helsinki in 1953. She was upgraded several times and withdrawn from research use when the third Aranda was completed in 1989. The second Aranda still exists as the Finnish training vessel Katarina.

The current Aranda was completed by Wärtsilä's Helsinki shipyard in 1989, very shortly before Wärtsiläs's shipbuilding division went bankrupt. She was delivered to the Finnish Institute of Marine Research, for whom she sailed until the FIMR was merged into the Finnish Environmental Institute and the Finnish Meteorological Institute in 2009.

The Aranda was originally built for use within the Baltic Sea, but she has sailed further than just the Baltic Sea, including the Atlantic and the Arctic. In 1995 the Aranda sailed as far as the Weddell Sea on the Antarctica; she was not the firsy Finnish vessel to sail to the Antarctica. The first was the aptly named Finnpolaris, a Thomesto-owned but Finnlines-operated cargo ship that made four expeditions to the Antarctica for the Indian and Italian governments between 1983 and 1988.

The photographs below show the Aranda arriving in Helsinki West Harbour on the afternoon of 9 May 2013 after a short test voyage on the Gulf of Finland. Photographed from the Hernesaari cruise quay. Click on the images to see them in larger size.

Not the best weather to photograph a ship with a grey superstructure I admit. But chances to photograph the Aranda on the move are rare.
The Aranda's livery seems to be adopted version of the Finnish coast guard's colours (don't ask me why). Notice the SYKE logo on the side, with colours that don't really match the rest of the livery.
According to a rumour the Aranda was originally planned to be ten matres longer, which would have allowed for more researchers to be carried but also would have required more crew. Hence the result was this short stubby thing.
With the midships bridge and low stern, the ship is actually shaped quite similarly to a stereotypical superyacht of today. Less streamlined of course, but the size and overall shape are similar.
I've taken many photos of the Superstar sailing past a much-larger cruise ship. Here, for once, the Superstar is the big ship in background. Notice, by the way, how the Superstar is need of a new layer of paint for her sides.
Next time: Delphin.

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