MV Spirit, shown in foreground.

Flinders Port Holdings welcomes PV Spirit to its fleet, manufactured in Australia by Hart Marine

South Australian ports operator Flinders Port Holdings (FPH) has inaugurated the PV Spirit, welcoming the first of three pilot boats commissioned and built in conjunction with Hart Marine to its fleet at an event at the South Australian Yacht Squadron.

The vessel Spirit is a state-of-the-art pilot boat that features the Volvo Penta Inboard Propulsion System (IPS), which will enhance fuel efficiency, reduce environmental footprint and improve sustainability.

The new vessel Spirit features advanced composite hull technology, including a lightweight and corrosion-resistant structure that is durable in the harshest marine conditions. Its bow design facilitates smooth navigation in turbulent waters and improves self-righting capabilities.

The vessel features improved safety measures such as continuous railing, and a change in Pilot Vessel size provides FPH pilots and crew with additional room on the outer deck for pilot transfer and coxswain activities. “We’re also proud of the introduction of Dynamic Positioning into our fleet to improve the manoeuvring of the vessel in adverse weather conditions,” General Manager Carl Kavina said.

Further innovations include the ability to access data to optimise the operation of the engine and driveline. This feature allows for real-time exchange of vessel performance and consumption data, allowing FPH to assist in further reduction of emissions.

Kavina said FPH appreciated working alongside Hart Marine to build its fleet of energy-efficient and technologically advanced pilot vessels.

“These cutting-edge vessels are introducing innovative technologies and supporting us to meet our sustainability targets with a tangible focus on reducing fuel emissions now and into the future,” Kavina said.

“Working with Hart Marine, which aligns with our vision for greater sustainability, improved safety and the ability to harness the latest technological features, is very important to us and we appreciate the relationship we’re building.”

Hart Marine is committed to sustainable practices, investment and exploration.

“We are thrilled that Flinders Ports has chosen to partner with Hart on this innovative pilot build and we’re excited to deliver a vessel that incorporates the pinnacle of sustainability innovation,” a Hart Marine spokesperson said.

“Spirit embodies our dedication to a better tomorrow, and we eagerly anticipate seeing her in action, serving Flinders Ports for many years to come.”

Hart Marine is due to deliver FPH’s second and third pilot boats later in 2024.

Flinders Port Holdings owns and operates Flinders Adelaide Container Terminal as well as the port of Port Adelaide and the six key regional ports of Port Giles, Port Lincoln, Wallaroo, Port Pirie, Klein Point and Thevenard.

Flinders Port Holdings is ranked as one of South Australia’s top ten companies, with an annual turnover of more than $200m. They also employ 700 people and indirectly support 6,000 jobs in South Australia.

Their operations facilitate over $25bn in international trade annually and are the key platform for South Australian two-way trade in goods.