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Markey Wins Contract with Bollinger for Winch Work Aboard NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown

Bollinger Mississippi Shipyards recently awarded Markey Machine a major contract for winch refurbishment aboard NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown.

Markey’s three oceanographic winches have been aboard for 27 years; they will receive varied upgrades.

Perhaps the most significant of these is an alteration of the level wind on the DESH-5 Deep Sea Winch. The three-sheave original configuration, with manual control, will be simplified in the upgrade, to a Two-Sheave level wind, to extend cable life.

“NOAA is working to maximize the service life of each of its vessels, in part by investing in mid-life repairs,” said Jamie LeCompte, NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown project manager.

“Upgrading and refurbishing these winches is an important part of making the Brown more efficient, and cleaner for the environment, and safer to operate, and will keep the ship meeting the needs of the nation well into the next decade.”

Indeed, it is noteworthy that three other government research vessel operators recently ordered similar upgrades of long-serving Markey winches aboard.

“No single action could more clearly indicate NOAA’s confidence in our product than this order. Ours is a long-running relationship, and we are most fortunate to have a customer like NOAA.”

J. Davis, Oceanographic Sales, Markey

As on other Markey winches, the DESH-5 Two-Sheave level wind is the single most engineered subassembly on the winch, engineered to 6 figures. The Two-Sheave unit simplified varied processes at work in earlier three-sheave units, while enhancing safety features. For example, the unit has no reverse bends in the cable path, thereby lengthening cable service life. In addition, the need for a winch turntable (platform) is eliminated by the use of rotating flagging sheaves. Mechanical actuation, by use of a hand wheel directly coupled to the diamond screw, significantly reduces overall level-wind cost, as well as complexity, in the absence of extra sensors, motors, and VFDs.

“NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown is a global class vessel supporting scientific research to increase our understanding of climate and the ocean,” said NOAA Commissioned Corps Capt. Amanda Goeller, commanding officer of NOAA Marine Operations Center — Atlantic. “These repairs, system overhauls and modernization will allow the ship to continue operating for many years to come.”

Amanda Goeller

Markey will complete work in 2024.

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