September 19, 2014

In the offshore world, AHTS (Anchor Handling Tug Supply) vessels have a special status due to their versatility, but also and especially their ability to perform operations that can be highly complex. Explanations:

With its fleet of more than 100 AHTS vessels, including 72 Bourbon Liberty 200 and 300 class vessels, BOURBON can claim proven expertise in towing, anchor-handling, and positioning operations involving offshore facilities, anywhere in the world. Zainuri Halid is Senior Operations Manager for Bourbon Offshore Asia, in Singapore. He knows how demanding these tasks can be for vessels and their crews: « Anchors are very different, but the biggest can reach 8 meters in length and weigh about 10 tons... Depending on the area of operation, handling them can be very tricky. Lifting them in shallow water, like in Thailand, for example, will require great power and special skills. »

In some operations requiring extreme precision, a ROV intervention can be decisive.« These ROVs serve as a guide to perfectly positioning the equipment to be deployed» , said Gontran de la Souchère, Operations Manager, Bourbon Offshore Surf. « They are a real guarantee of safety, quality, and efficiency. »

" Lifting anchors in shallow water will require great power and special skills"
Zainuri HalidSenior Operations Manager, Bourbon Offshore Asia


A different type of service with a similar issue: transporting heavy parcels. It requires vessels equipped with dynamic positioning system in order to secure the approach phases near the platforms, as well as the use of satellite navigation. The Bourbon Liberty series, with 30% more upper deck space than traditional vessels, here again make the difference in supply operations to oil and gas infrastructures.

Powerful winches, optimized deck space, dynamic positioning systems... AHTS vessels are able to deliver a wide range of services and to ensure the safety of personnel and equipment.

Emblematic operations

Multipurpose vessels, AHTS are able to perform many operations, these are the most common:

  • anchor handling for deep water drilling platforms
  • pre-lay: installing anchors and connecting platforms to the anchors
  • hop around: moving barges
  • barge handling: supplying a barge through another, smaller one, and tender rig support
  • jackup towing and positioning (a platform with 3 legs) for continental offshore operations
Bourbon behind the scenes