ONE OF ICELAND’S TOP DEMERSAL TRAWLERS IS THE 80M SOLBERG AND SCANMAR’S ICELANDIC AGENT THORIR MATTHÍASSON JOINED THE VESSEL FOR A TRIP AT SEA TO GIVE THE VESSEL’S SKIPPER AND CREW
Built at the Thersan shipyard in Turkey and delivered to the owners RAMMI hf. in Siglufjördur, Iceland in April 2017, the impressive Solberg has an overall length of 80m and is powered by a Wartsila 6.310 kW main engine. Working four-week trips with its 32-man crew, Solberg operates various types of fishing including single and twin rig (double) trawling using mainly trawl gear from Hampidjan in Iceland, combined with trawl doors from Denmark’s Thyboron Trawldoors – Type 12 bottom trawl doors with specification of 5.6t each and 13m2 in area. Operating in the main fishing areas of the waters of north west Iceland, between Greenland and Iceland, the main target species are cod, haddock, redfish and saithe.
With all their seafood products for export and the main market being the UK, Solberg must operate not only economically but also be as sustainable as possible, the vessel is therefore fitted out with a full processing filleting factory system that extends to include a state-of-the-art fishmeal facility and fish oil factory – meaning that all fish offal and waste is used for the fishmeal and fish oil and nothing is thrown away back to sea after processing. The vessel’s processing and production capacity is approximately 50 tonnes per day, plus the additional resulting fishmeal and fish oil.
THE SCANMAR ANGLE
“During the five days I spend last autumn on board Solberg my focus was on teaching the skipper, Sigurbjörn Kjartansson on the operation of the new SB365 system, and instructing the deck crew on the importance of the location of the sensors on the trawl for best results,” explains Thorir Matthíasson.
Solberg is certainly geared up with the latest technology in trawl science with installation of a full Scanbas 365 system with SS4 double distance door and clump sensors with all functions, including angle of the doors, depth, temperature, distance, Trawleyes, SS4 Catch sensors with angle functions and Flow sensors.
Thorir Matthíasson’s work, and the performance by the suite of Scanmar systems, resulted in some very positive feedback from those on Solberg: “Having seen the system work fantastically well at sea, skipper Kjartansson says that he very much likes how user-friendly the operation is – particularly with the function that allows him to create his own preferred screen layout and settings which he can then save to his own private log-in, meaning that if someone changes the layout, he can return to his preferences with a single click of a button. “My focus was also the teach the deck crew about the sensors and how to work on them through the QBC-X1 programming and charger unit,” Thorir explained, adding that this simple intuition includes knowing about the easy-to -change FID code and how to adjust the power settings to get always the longest battery capacity for each sensor.
The deck crew were impressed that the battery lifetime on the SS4 sensors is very long and, in a trip of four weeks, they never needed to recharge the SS4 catch sensor once – and that the door sensors needed to be charged only one single time during the entire long trip – and, while remaining on the doors, only took one hour to fully charge to 100%.
“We spend also a good time on using the Flow sensors,” Thorir commented. “When double trawling, we used Flow sensors on both trawl headlines and it was very interesting to clearly see the flow speed and flow angle into the trawl.
“What was also very interesting was to observe and monitor how easy it was to keep good and direct flow straight into the trawls by adjusting the wire length on the port or starboard side, or the clump. “By adjusting the wire, sometimes by just by few metres or fathoms, you could see the difference immediately on the Flow sensor box — probably the most underestimated sensor on the market, transmitting such important information as Flow speed and Flow angle into the trawl.”