The company Nautilus Minerals Canada signed an agreement for the rental of a ship that will be the floating base for the development of the Solwara 1project, finalized to the extraction and the transport of copper and gold in the Bismark Sea, in Papua New Guinea. Marine Assets Corporation (MAC), a company specialized in marine solutions based in Dubai that focus its activity in the delivery of new support ships for the offshore industry, will own and will manage the first ship mining gold, while its design and construction will be entrusted by the Fujian Mawei China Ltd shipyard.
The concept design drawn up by Nautilus provides a ship 227m long and 40m wide. It will accommodate up to 180 people and generate about 31MW of power. All the equipment used for mining underlying the platform will be installed on the ship during the construction, and then will be completed after the delivery that is expected by the end of 2017.
Nautilus, the first but not the only one to explore the ocean floor for massive sulphide deposits, expects Solwara to become the first commercial mining project on the high seas around the world.