Built by the Aluminium Marine shipyard in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Coolgaree Cat, is a versatile 32-meter Incat Crowther catamaran ferry developed specifically for operator Sealink Travel Group’s Palm Island and Magnetic Island runs from Townsville in northern Queensland.
The vessel is optimized for through-life efficiency on the offshore Palm Island route. According to Incat Crowther, long-term value is enhanced through a clear focus on operational features including cargo handling, passenger vision, and maintenance. Operational costs are reduced with a lower fuel burn being seen during sea trials, despite Coolgaree Cat being a larger, heavier-duty vessel than those it is replacing.
Boarding is via stern side gates or a port side midship boarding door. The main deck features 206 seats in a mix of booth and forward-facing, with deep windows giving the cabin a light and airy feel. There is a large kiosk aft, in addition to multiple storage areas.
The upper deck seats 86 passengers in a mix of lounges and regular seats. 26 exterior seats are available on the upper aft deck. The bulk of the aft deck is dedicated to containerized freight stowage, with space for 12 luggage trolleys and a cool room for a further three. The aft end coamings of this deck have been reinforced to cope with the impact of the trolleys whilst loading gates are specifically located o work with existing infrastructure.
The vessel is fitted with twin Caterpillar C32 engines, delivering 970 kW each. Propulsion is via fixed-pitch propellers.
Capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots, the vessel has a fuel-efficient fully loaded operational speed of 26 knots at 60% MCR offering increased time between main engine overhauls.
Incat Crowther Technical Director Dr. Andrew Tuite said, “In partnership with the operations team at SeaLink in Townsville, Incat Crowther developed a functional robust ferry for unique operating conditions experienced to Palm Island. Incat Crowther is proud of the technically advanced Coolgaree Cat, designed specifically for the Queensland environment and built in Queensland using world’s best shipbuilding processes.”
Chris Briggs, general manager of Sealink North Queensland, said “Coolgaree Cat has achieved the performance envelope we were aiming for and has actually exceeded our performance expectations in some areas. This result has been achieved through Incat Crowther’s willingness to combine SeaLink’s operational knowledge and experience with their expertise and industry-leading approach to designing aluminium passenger ferries.”
Design No: IC17244
Vessel Name: Coolgaree Cat
Length Overall: 32.0m
Length Waterline: 31.5m
Beam: 10.0 m
Draft Hull: 1.2 m
Draft Max: 1.8 m
Depth: 3.0 m
Fuel: 5,000 liters
Fresh Water: 2,000 liters
Sullage: 3,000 liters
Service Speed: 25 knots
Maximum Speed: 30
Main Engines: 2 x CAT C32 B rating
Installed Power: 2 x 970 kW @ 2,100rpm
Propulsion: 2 x fixed-pitch propellers
Construction Material: Marine grade aluminum
Class: NSCV 1C/1D