3. Metal Shark to build a pilot boat for Pascagoula
Metal Shark to build a pilot boat for Pascagoula

Metal Shark to build a pilot boat for Pascagoula

Shipbuilder Metal Shark announced it is constructing a 55 'x 17' welded aluminum pilot boat for the Mississippi Pascagoula Bar Pilots Association, scheduled to be shipped later this year.


Designed in-house, the new 55 Defiant Pilot being designed for Pascagoula Pilots utilizes the "mounted hull" concept originally developed for the United States by Metal Shark. Navy 40 PB system, which features an improved version of "pillarless glass" by Metal Shark in a two-tiered, reverse-racked design.

As a further development of this concept, the new Defiant 55 pilothouse features a second glass deck, which increases visibility of the downward angle during man overboard rescue, or when working alongside another vessel. Meanwhile, during pilot transition manoeuvres, wide overhead spotter windows provide unimpeded upward visibility.

Although its Defiant-class vessels are available to a wide variety of operators, Metal Shark said it has built a specifically pilot-optimized arrangement that features smooth, non-skid decks running from bow to stern, safety rails and grab handles, and operator-configured pilot boarding platforms.

For Pascagoula, the launch was fitted with a foredeck transition zone with integrated stairways enabling port, starboard or forward access to two deployable platforms with integrated safety rails that allow pilots to board ships from either side of the vessel.

A full electronics package includes a multifunction display system Furuno TZtouch2 with integrated GPS, radar, depth sounder and a premium thermal imaging system FLIR M-series 364C for night time operations. Five closed-circuit cameras allow the operator of the vessel to track, at a glance, the engine room and aft deck from various angles while maintaining watch.

The boat will be powered by twin Cat C18 engines rated at 803 horsepower each, turning Nibral four-blade Michigan Wheel 34 "diameter propellers through Twin Disc MGX5146A 1.961 gears. This combination will produce an estimated cruise speed in the range of 25 knots, and a top speed of 30 knots. A fuel capacity of 800 gallons makes a cruise speed range of approximately 280 nautical miles.

Maritime Business World 

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