At a recent event at its headquarters in Gorinchem, the Netherlands, Damen Shipyards demonstrated its next generation composite “Water Bus,” the 2407, to a private international audience. As part of the event, guests were invited to experience the water bus and its features firsthand with a short trip on the Boven-Merwede waterway on the Rhine. Damen reports that guests were impressed with the Water Bus’ construction, speed and aesthetics.
The hull and the superstructure of the water bus are made from vacuum infused GFRP, which Damen says provides operators with durability, reduced fuel consumption, less maintenance, and no corrosion or fatigue problems. The bus has a slender hull and carries less weight than a traditional aluminum vessel.
Damen says the Water Bus series is ideal for regular, intensive commuting operations on busy waterways. The company adds that the vessel can be easily adapted to specific customer requirements and a wide range of configurations are available, from commuting and shuttle to sightseeing and dinner cruising.
Passengers will enjoy journeys at speeds of up to 21 knots that are safe, quiet and with minimal vibration. The Water Bus design is available in versions from 16-24 meters, and is capable of carrying from 20 to 120 passengers.
The Water Bus series will be built at Damen’s specialist composite facility in Antalya, Turkey. The company believes fast delivery times will be possible due to the bus’ construction methods and composite materials.
“The seasonal impact on demand for passenger transport by water is well known, and with the summer ahead of us our first Water Bus 2407 is already getting plenty of interest,” said Jelle Meindertsma, Damen’s sales manager. “Meanwhile a second unit is under construction in Antalya.”