N o r w e g i a n Firm To Buy Jetfoils For Offshore Use From Boeing M a r i ne
Braathens S.A.F.E., a Scandinavian d o m e s t i c a i r l i n e headquartered in Oslo, Norway, has reached agreement with Boeing Marine Systems of Seattle, Wash , toward the purchase of two Boeing Jetfoil hydrofoils for use in o f f s h o r e oil c r e w and supply transfer.
Bjoern G. Braathen, Braathens' president, made the announcement recently f r om Seattle where he and a group of Norwegian Government, union, and company representatives were visiting the hydrofoil facility.
The purchase, which through the Department of Commerce has Norwegian Government approval, is a three-phase agreement culminating in delivery of the two Jetfoils in 1982. A joint Braath- ens-Boeing study will determine the best configuration of the Jetfoil model 929-115 for safe and comfortable t r a n s p o r t a t i o n of crews to offshore platforms in the North Sea. The Jetfoils will also be employed in the transfer of high-priority cargo to the rigs. Following the definition of the configuration, Boeing will provide a specific proposal, and upon approval will begin construction of the Jetfoils in time for 1982 delivery. Braathens is presently working with Coast Center Base and West Engineering and Research Company of Norway to establish a transport company to offer a complete offshore transport service based on the Jetfoil. Braathens plans to f o rm a separate company to purchase and operate the Jetfoils, while Coast Center Base will operate the terminal facilities. The Jetfoils will operate in conjunction with a new system to transfer crews to and from oil rigs, one of which is now under development by Kongsberg Engineering A.S. of Norway.
Boeing has already delivered a special performance Jetfoil derivative to the British Royal Navy, which will begin operation in April f o r protection of oil and gas installations in the North Sea. Commercial operations began in 1975, and currently there are 11 Jetfoils in operation with announced orders for six more for 1980-81 delivery.