The latest ship in the fleet of Alaskan Leader Fisheries will be one of the biggest longliners plying Alaska waters once it’s launched early next spring, and it will be making Kodiak its homeport.
But even before it hits the water, the fishing vessel “Northern Leader” is being lauded as a significant advancement in long-lining and sustainability.
Jensen Maritime, the company which designed the 184-foot ship, was given the “New Wave Award” by National Fishermen and Workboat magazines during the Pacific Marine Expo in Seattle last month. The award recognizes the energy efficient design of the Northern Leader’s diesel-electric propulsion, and the first-ever use of a “Z-Drive” on a Bering Sea longliner. A Z-Drive mounts the propeller on a nacelle under the boat, which can swivel in any direction and acts as the ship’s rudder.
The crew can fish up to 76,000 hooks at the same time, and has a freezer capacity of 1.9-million pounds.
The 184-foot Northern Leader is currently under construction at J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding in Tacoma. It will be instantly recognizable as one of Alaskan Leader’s ships, painted in bright blue with an aft house. It joins the 167-foot Bristol Leader, the 150-foot Alaskan Leader, and the 124-foot Bering Leader.
Northern Leader Design Recognized for Efficiency