; VOX XIMA at work on Maasvlakte Cutter suction dredgers for
Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out
Your Federal Quarterly Tax Payments are due April 15th Get Help Now >>

VOX XIMA at work on Maasvlakte Cutter suction dredgers for

VIEWS: 765 PAGES: 39

  • pg 1
									                                                        Ports	and	Dredging
	   Main	contents

	 	 OX	MÁXIMA	at	work	on	
   Maasvlakte	2
	 	 utter	suction	dredgers	for	rock	
   cutting                                                             Summer	2010	|	e	175

	 I
   	 HC	Offshore	&	Marine	builds	
   unique	Diving	Support	Vessel	(DSV)
	 I
   	 HC	Parts	&	Services	Europe	
   renovates	severely	damaged	
   Beaver	dredger
	 IHC	8527MP®	goes	into	service
	 ver	20	years’	experience	with	

IHC	Merwede	is	focussed	on	the	continuous	
development	of	design	and	construction	activities	
for	the	specialist	maritime	sector.	It	is	the	global	
market	leader	for	efficient	dredging	and	mining	
vessels	and	equipment	–	with	vast	experience	
accumulated	over	decades	–	and	a	reliable	
supplier	of	custom-built	ships	and	supplies	for	
offshore	construction.	
IHC	Merwede	has	in-house	expertise	for	
engineering	and	manufacturing	innovative	vessels	
and	advanced	equipment,	as	well	as	providing	
life-cycle	support.	Its	integrated	systematic	
approach	has	helped	to	develop	optimum	product	
performance	and	long-term	business	partnerships.	
The	company’s	broad	customer	base	includes	
dredging	operators,	oil	and	gas	corporations,	
offshore	contractors	and	government	authorities.	

IHC	Merwede

P.O. Box 204
3360 AE Sliedrecht
The Netherlands

T +31 184 41 15 55
F +31 184 41 18 84

Ports	and	Dredging
Dear reader,

This issue of Ports and Dredging will be distributed at the
WODCON XIX conference on 8-12 September in Beijing and the
SMM exhibition on 7-10 September in Hamburg.
In the past six months, we have completed many projects at
IHC Merwede and this issue reports on new ships, the
upgrading and refurbishment of existing ships, plus other
exciting developments.                                                                                     59° 19’ 44.90” N               Page
The VOX MÁXIMA is an extraordinary dredger in every respect.                                               0° 22’ 39.96” E                20
While she was being launched by HRH Princess Máxima of
                                                                                                           SEVEN	ATLANTIC	commissioned
The Netherlands, Ports and Dredging had the opportunity to
observe the dredger and her crew at work. We hope that you                                                                               Page
will be equally impressed when you read the feature on page 10.
IHC Merwede has built a wealth of cutter suction dredgers
(CSD) of all types and sizes. The second feature on page 16
explains the special design requirements of rock cutting                                                    39° 26’ 18.22” N              Page
applications. As a reliable source said, “A CSD doesn’t become                                              0° 18’ 51.50” W               34
a rock CSD by equipping the cutter head with pick points, or by
                                                                                                            In	close	collaboration...
overpowering it.”
The diving support/offshore working vessel, SEVEN ATLANTIC,
left our yard in early springtime and is another extraordinary
ship due to the level of advanced equipment on board.
Find out the customer’s appreciation on page 20.
The fourth feature on page 26 explains how an IHC Beaver®
was damaged when she collided with a World War II mine in
Wilhelmshaven harbour. Our RIO Europe successfully
recovered the dredger and handed her over ‘as good as new’
to owner Möbius Bau-Aktiengesellschaft in Hamburg.
Following the success of the IHC 7025MP® CSDs in the Chinese
dredging market, the first two examples of their bigger sister,
the IHC 8527MP® were introduced (see page 30). They proved
to be extremely versatile dredgers, even for the most
challenging soils. We congratulate G&H Shunhang, the owner
of the first two IHC 8527MP®s and soon to take delivery of
another four.
Finally, the laws of Moore, Microsoft and Intel affect our highly
automated workhorses as much as our professional and
personal lives: computers must be routinely changed every
three to five years. DEME took this step for three of its trailing
hopper suction dredgers, dating back to the beginning of the
century. On page 34 we demonstrate how design choices
and excellent cooperation between the contractor and                     	     	   Further	in	this	edition
IHC Merwede considerably improve this anticipated schedule,              	    4	   Newsflash	from	the	group
and help to prepare the vessels for the challenges of tomorrow.          	   16	   Power	girls
                                                                         	   26	   Fixing	up	a	casualty	of	war
We wish you a successful visit to WODCON or SMM, and we                  	   38	   On	order	&	Recently	delivered
hope you enjoy this issue.

Kind regards,
Raymond Hendriks

                                                                     2   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
51° 58’ 12.24” N
4° 01’ 19.20” E

A	sight	for	sore	eyes

                                                     Page     38° 54’ 45.46” N
                                                     30       121° 41’ 55.51” E

                                                            	 	 owerful	Chinese	CSDs	working	

                        Ports	and	Dredging                        Cover: VOX MÁXIMA, Maasvlakte 2
                   	    K. Jansen                                 Ports and Dredging is published by
                        Corporate Communication IHC Merwede       IHC Merwede.

                        Production:                               The articles appearing in this journal
                        Die Haghe/AM&S, The Hague,                may be reproduced in whole or in part
                        The Netherlands                           on the condition that the source is
                        Editorial board:
                        M.O. Boor, H.J. Cornegé, R. Hendriks,     Editorial and correspondence address:
                        A. Kik, L.A. Klootwijk, A. Korevaar,      IHC Merwede, PO Box 204,
                        S.G. Mensonides, H. van Muijen, E. Put    3360 AE Sliedrecht, The Netherlands.

                        The articles were published with          Copyright: IHC Merwede
                        the cooperation of:                       ISDN: 0166-5766
                        Ms P. van der Haar (PUMA)
                        Ms G. Brinkers (Van Oord)                 For	more	information	about	any	
                        Mr J. Lefever (DEME)                      article,	please	contact	IHC	Merwede.

                                        3    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
from	the	group	
March 2010
	      	 ew	Government	financing	facility	for	capital	goods	exporters	explored	by	IHC	Merwede	
       On Tuesday 16 March 2010 the first working capital financing facility was officially signed and
       presented at a special meeting between IHC Merwede, Atradius Dutch State Business and a
       consortium of banks. The facility is backed by the Dutch Government’s new working capital
       guarantee. IHC Merwede is the first capital goods exporter to use this new financing
       opportunity. The facility has been set up to stimulate Dutch exports and to support credit
       facilities for Dutch capital goods exporters.
       The financing facility was established in close cooperation between IHC Merwede, its bank
       consortium – of Rabobank, Commerzbank, Royal Bank of Scotland and ING Finance – and
       Atradius Dutch State Business NV. The bank consortium will arrange the facility with the
       backing of the Ministry of Finance. This is a good example of the export stimulating measures,
       which the banks have taken with the Dutch Government – even in the present economic
       circumstances – to support the Dutch exporters in the field of credit supply. First working
       capital facility handed over Atradius Dutch State Business NV, the executor of the Dutch
       Government’s Export Credit Insurance facilities, has handed out the first working capital
       financing facililty to Rabobank, which acts as agent and coordinator of this new financing
       agreement on behalf of IHC Merwede’s banking consortium. 1

	       Successful	naming	and	launch	ceremony	for	SEVEN	PACIFIC
        The SEVEN PACIFIC, built for Subsea 7, was successfully named and launched on Saturday
        20 March 2010 at Krimpen aan den IJssel, The Netherlands. The ceremony was conducted at
        the IHC Offshore & Marine division’s shipyard by Ann Clarkson, the wife of BP’s Senior Vice
        President, E&P Projects Execution, David Clarkson. The SEVEN PACIFIC is a state-of-the-art
        pipelaying and construction ice-class vessel, which is suitable for unrestricted operation
        worldwide. It is capable of installing flexible pipes and umbilicals in water up to 3,000 metres
        deep. The construction work has since been carried out at the IHC Offshore & Marine
        division’s facilities at Krimpen aan den IJssel. This is the fourth vessel contracted by Subsea 7
        to the IHC Offshore & Marine division, the others being: the SEVEN OCEANS (pipelaying);
        the SEVEN SEAS (pipelaying and construction); and the SEVEN ATLANTIC (diving support). 2

	       IHC	Merwede	launches	Chinese	cutter	suction	dredgers	in	tandem
        IHC Merwede has simultaneously launched two IHC Beaver® 9029C cutter suction dredgers on
        Wednesday 24 March 2010. The vessels have been designed and built for one of the
        company’s large Chinese customers, Sinohydro, at Dutch shipyards by IHC Beaver Dredgers.
        ZHONG GUO SHUI DIAN J08 was named and launched at the Sliedrecht shipyard, while its
        sister ship, ZHONG GUO SHUI DIAN J09, was named and launched at the
        Hardinxveld-Giessendam shipyard. The ceremony signified IHC Merwede’s ability to supply
        these custom-built vessels to the Chinese market. It also exhibited the level of advanced
        technology at its disposal and the control it enjoys over the manufacturing and assembly
        processes at the locations of its various business units in The Netherlands. 3

                                                                  4   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010



    5   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    6   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

    April 2010
    	        Naming	and	launch	ceremony	for	ISANDLWANA
             Built for Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), based in South Africa, the naming and
             launch ceremony for the 4,200 cubic metres trailing suction hopper dredger ISANDLWANA
             took place on 14 April 2010 at the IHC Merwede shipyard, Verenigde Scheepswerf Heusden
             (VSH) in Heusden, The Netherlands. The ceremony was conducted by Mrs. Beatrice Nkayi,
             Executive Manager Ports & Corporate Affairs at TNPA. The construction of the ship will be
             completed at the IHC Merwede yard in Kinderdijk, The Netherlands. After the
             commissioning and dredging trials in The Netherlands, the ISANDLWANA will sail to her
             home port in Durban, South Africa to perform maintenance dredging works. 4

    	       IHC	Merwede	achieves	record	revenue	for	2009
            IHC Merwede’s revenue increased to €1.13 billion in 2009 (€1.09 billion in 2008), with a net
            profit of €57 million (€76 million in 2008) over the same period. This record turnover was
            backed by a €1.8 billion order book at the end of 2008. The reduced level of profit
            compared to last year is predominantly explained by operational issues during the
            construction of a large custom-built vessel. The overall picture is one of a company in good
            financial health.

    May 2010
    	      IHC	Merwede	makes	major	investment	in	new	sustainable	offshore	technology	
           IHC Hydrohammer®, market leader in the field of pile driving equipment, is continuing to
           make a major investment in sustainable and innovative solutions.
           It has invested a total of €37 million to expand its fleet of rental pile drivers as well as the
           further development and production of a revolutionary new design that will transform the
           market for ultra-deep water structures in the offshore oil and gas sectors:
           the IHC Waterhammer®, developed for use in deep water at depths up to 3,000 metres.
           It is controlled by a radically redesigned hydraulic system that uses sea water instead of oil.
           This addresses the practical issue of it being technically impossible to pump oil to and from
           such depths, while of course there is no shortage of sea water around the structure.
           There are also environmental benefits in that this solution removes the risk of accidental oil
           leaks. 5

                                   7   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
        	 HC	Merwede	strengthens	its	leading	position	with	                        The TT Pump Dredging Unit was specifically developed
        strategic	acquisition	of	MMP	in	South	Africa                               for use in small-scale dredging projects, including
        IHC Merwede has strengthened its position in the market                    maintenance activities, as well as environmental
        for deep-sea dredging and mining with the strategic                        projects, loading and unloading hopper barges and
        acquisition of MMP, which is based in Cape Town, South                     mining activities. The TT Pump Dredging Unit is provided
        Africa. The new name of the company will be IHC Marine                     as a complete package, allowing the user to start work
        and Mineral Projects (IHC MMP).                                            immediately. The main advantage of renting the
        With 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface consisting of                      comprehensive TT Pump Dredging Unit is that it does not
        water, it is logical to assume that the future lies                        require any large capital investment and therefore
        underwater. That’s why IHC Merwede has combined all                        spreads the financial risk for customers. Another
        of its activities in this sector to create a new business                  advantage is that there is no need to pay maintenance or
        unit, IHC Deep Sea Dredging & Mining.                                      repair costs. The compact TT Pump Dredging Unit is
        It will focus on excavation techniques in deep water                       available as a complete rental package and in four
        (up to 3,000 metres) as well as vertical transportation                    different configurations. Customers are offered the most
        from the sea bed to the surface. 6                                         suitable configuration for the scale of their dredging
	       IHC	Lagersmit	retrofits	AVRA	Shipping	Group	fleet                          The TT Pump has undergone a technical overhaul, and is
        IHC Lagersmit is appointed to retrofit the AVRA Shipping                   now more durable, maintenance-friendly and efficient in
        Group fleet of tug boats with a closed-oil, lubricated                     terms of mobility and operational use. 7
        stern tube system. The system features SUPREME® seals
        and white metal bearing bushes and replaces the                  June 2010
        previous open-water, lubricated stern tube system on             	       	 HC	Lagersmit’s	new	production	facility	opened	in	
        AVRA’s vessels. IHC Lagersmit will assist AVRA with                      Alblasserdam
        overhauling and equipping its complete fleet of four                     IHC Lagersmit has opened a new manufacturing plant on
        ocean-going tug boats with the new components in                         8 June in Alblasserdam, The Netherlands. The company
        2010. Two new vessels will also be fitted with SUPREME®                  has decided to invest in the latest high-tech production
        seals. The new system will be quipped with SUPREME®                      facility for rotating shaft seals in western Europe, despite
        forward and aft seals. The 190 aft seal is made of bronze,               the economically difficult times.
        is fitted with an extra sand barrier and runs on a regular,
        chrome steel liner.                                              	         	 HC	Merwede	secures	new	orders	worth	more	than	
                                                                                   half-a-billion	Euros
	       	 HC	Merwede	and	Wärtsilä	join	forces	to	extend	the	life	
        I                                                                          IHC Merwede is pleased to announce that it has recently
        of	ships	with	Bolnes	and	Smit	Bolnes	engines                               secured assignments for dredging and offshore vessels
        IHC Parts & Services, part of Wärtsilä Netherlands (WNL)                   and equipment to the value of more than €500 million.
        have teamed up to provide life-cycle support for ships                     This reinforces the group’s belief that there will be
        with Bolnes and Smit Bolnes engines. The companies will                    continued demand for its innovative vessels, advanced
        combine their industry knowledge, expertise and strength                   equipment and life-cycle support.
        to maintain these dredging and other vessels worldwide in                  The latest projects agreed and confirmed by IHC
        order to extend product life cycles, reduce owners’ costs                  Merwede include three trailing suction hopper dredgers
        and meet the latest environmental legislation. Ships fitted                (TSHD), one self-propelled cutter suction dredger and
        with Bolnes and Smit Bolnes engines are on average 30                      four IHC Beaver® cutter dredgers. Furthermore, orders
        years old and over. The plants where these engines were                    were received by: IHC Hydrohammer® for six large
        built closed years ago. Therefore it is increasingly difficult             Hydrohammers; IHC Handling Systems for various
        to find parts, yet there are still over 300 ships with (Smit)              Internal Lifting Tools and an external pile gripper tool;
        Bolnes engines in operation. The most valuable                             IHC Hytop for the supply of several hydraulic jacking
        components of a dredging vessel are those that are                         systems and system packages; and IHC Deep Sea
        specifically used for dredging and the systems for                         Dredging & Mining for a fall pipe.
        propulsion and energy supply. As part of its cooperation                   IHC Merwede’s President Govert Hamers says, “These
        with Wärtsilä and IHC Parts & Services as a full service                   valuable new projects are in line with IHC Merwede’s
        provider, offers the complete upgrade solution for the                     outlook for 2010. The market which we operate in is
        ship, including dredging components and ship service.                      showing clear signs of recovery. In such a climate, it is
        Wärtsilä ensures total maintenance and upgrade packages                    reassuring to know that IHC Merwede’s reputation as the
        for the complete propulsion, including every part of the                   technology innovator remains intact and our customers
        engine and automation up to the propeller.                                 recognise the reliability and efficiency of our products
                                                                                   and services. With these assignments, IHC Merwede has
        	 HC	Parts	&	Services	offers	rental	service	for	improved	TT	               a strong work occupancy until 2012 and our flexibility
        Pump	Dredging	Unit                                                         allows us to take on even more work during that period.”
        IHC Parts & Services now offers dredging operators and
        utility and infrastructure engineering companies all over
        the world the opportunity to rent its improved TT Pump
        Dredging Unit.

                                                                     8   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

    9   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
A	sight	for	sore	eyes
VOX	MÁXIMA	at	work	on	Maasvlakte	2

                        10   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
1 The VOX MÁXIMA at work

Introduction                                      So, when the new ship was tendered and
In January 2010, IHC Dredgers (based in           ordered from IHC Merwede, the staff
Kinderdijk) delivered the largest trailing        teamed up with the yard’s specialists and
suction hopper dredger (TSHD) ever built          set up the knowledge cluster needed for
in The Netherlands to Van Oord in                 the innovative design that Van Oord had
Rotterdam (figure 1). The 31,200 cubic            in mind. At that time, the sky seemed to
metre VOX MÁXIMA went straight to                 be the limit for the global economy.
work – and dealt with a few teething              Dubai was buzzing with reclamation
troubles – on what is currently Europe’s          activity and other dredging markets
largest land reclamation project, the             were demanding more and more sand,
Maasvlakte 2 expansion of the port of             which had to be picked up further
Rotterdam. Two established Dutch                  offshore and at greater depths.
dredging contractors, Van Oord and                This meant that the ship needed a large
Boskalis, have formed a joint venture             hopper, high-loaded speed and a large
under the name PUMA to complete the               suction depth capability, so that sand
project.                                          could be transported across large
                                                  distances at the lowest possible price.
Maasvlakte 2 is the largest ever
reclamation project in The Netherlands.           The deliberations resulted in a ship that
Three hundred and sixty-five million              would fit on IHC Dredger’s sheltered
cubic metres of sand will be used to              slipway. A diesel-electric dredging
create an area of about 1,000 hectares            installation was selected to maximise
for the expansion of the port and other           freedom of choice for the placement of
industrial activities. The first phase of the     the large dredge and jet pumps, with the
project runs until 2013. It includes              associated pipeline systems. To cope
reclaiming 700 hectares of land for               with the large suction depth and the
container storage and distribution sites,         huge amounts of sand, the suction pipe
building 3.5 kilometres of quay walls,            on the starboard side was equipped with
11 kilometres of sea defences, the                a single-walled IHC dredge pump, driven
infrastructure and deepening the port             by a 6,000kW controllable electromotor.
basins. The Port of Rotterdam Authority           This pump is used for loading the
is managing the project and it expects            hopper, with the advantage that
major economic benefits to be gained              production is virtually unaffected by the
from the expansion. Sustainability is also        vacuum in the suction line.
a major issue throughout the entire               For discharging, two double-walled
project. Maasvlakte 2 is expected to be           IHC dredge pumps work in series: one is
fully occupied by 2033. VOX MÁXIMA                mounted in the pump room below the
and about 20 other TSHDs belonging to             hopper level; and the other is positioned
the joint venture partners (figure 2) have        on the port side of the foredeck, where
brought large deposits of sand to the             it is easily accessible for maintenance
surface, including a world record of 3.8          and inspection. The 13,500 controllable
million cubic metres in the last week of          kilowatts of these pumps take the soil
April 2010 (figure 3).                            mixture to a rainbow pipe and/or shore
                                                  discharge coupling above the bows of
A	special	design                                  the ship. Of course, the ship can also
Throughout the company’s history, Van             discharge its load through two rows of
Oord’s technical team has built up                hydraulically operated bottom doors.
enormous resources in terms of                    The two six-metre controllable pitch
knowledge and experience relating to              propellers in fixed nozzles give the ship a
dredging and dredger operations.                  loaded speed of more than 17 knots. This
              11   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010


combination of main features matched          three metres. Would larger bows and            the next step was anything but routine.
the design requirements and ensured           gondolas break or collapse at the              The Kinderdijk shipyard is located
relatively low fuel consumption and           intended scale? Nobody knew the                alongside a traditional Dutch dike and it
emissions. There was also a strong focus      answer to that question.                       is adjacent to a UNESCO World Heritage
on the availability and safety of the ship.                                                  site of 19 windmills (figure 4) that were
The deck crane in particular, which can       Another example: the mass of the single        built in the 18th century and attract
travel from the stern to the forecastle,      suction pipe with an inlet diameter of         thousands of tourists. However, the
was designed for safe hoisting during         1,400 millimetres meant revolutionising        infrastructure is simply inadequate for
normal operations in swell, so that repair    the design of winches, gantries and            moving the 10,000 tonnes of steel – and
and maintenance can take place while          dynamic shock absorbers. And there was         more – required for this vessel in the
the ship is fully operational – without the   still no proof that the new designs would      required timeframe. So, the yard
need to return to harbour.                    work in practice. On top of that, the          developed a sophisticated approach to
                                              dynamic behaviour of a suction tube of         construction, with the emphasis on
This overall picture was familiar to the      this size required a comprehensive             moving steel across water, enhancing the
IHC Merwede and Van Oord engineers.           dynamic analysis – there was a serious         building speed, increasing the limited
The problem was the leap in scale             possibility that the dangling pipe could       capacity of cranes and spreading the
compared to earlier vessels, even in          severely damage the vessel’s hull.             risks.
comparison to Van Oord’s VOLVOX               And finally, IHC Merwede has produced
TERRANOVA, the largest Kinderdijk-built       innumerable bottom doors and keelson           The ship included more than 200
ship up to that point. For example,           boxes in the past. The challenge now           sections. Some of these were
IHC Dredgers had developed a special          was to keep them in line, flat and             outsourced to other shipyards and
bulbous bow and placed propellers in          watertight, even with these sizes and          assembled to form larger parts, known
gondolas before. This arrangement             unprecedented levels of hogging and            as ‘blocks’. These were then moved to
considerably improves the hydrodynamic        sagging.                                       heavy, remote-controlled trucks for
profile of the ship and can reduce fuel                                                      transportation to pontoons that were
costs and emissions by up to 30 per cent.     Unique	building	approach                       towed over the river to the door of IHC
These features were standard in the           All the design issues were solved by           Dredgers’ slipway hall. The trucks drove
successful PALLIETER range, but those         IHC Dredgers’ and Van Oord’s teams.            off the pontoon slowly, aligning the
TSHDs had a hopper capacity of 5,600          On 30 May 2008, the keel of the new            blocks precisely with their counterparts
cubic metres and propeller diameters of       ship was laid. So far, so good, however,       that were already on the slipway.

                                                                    12   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

                                                                                             2 PRINS DER NEDERLANDEN and VOX MÁXIMA

                                                                                             3 The JV’s TSHDs brought 3.8 million cubic meters
                                                                                               to the surface in only a week. The VOX MÁXIMA
                                                                                               did her bit (courtesy PUMA).

                                                                                             4 The IHC Dredgers shipyard adjoins a UNESCO
                                                                                               World Heritage site of 19 windmills (courtesy

  5                                                                                          5 The giant gantries take the suction tube to the
                                                                                               saddles safely

Then, the welding started. This approach      the hopper; the dredge pumps start             the skills of the large building team and
meant that just five weeks were needed        running; and the self-emptying valves          the professional production process. He
for the assembly of almost 130 metres of      are opened. On the bridge, we watch the        points to two remarkable things about
the ship [1]. After this rapid operation,     cross needle production indicator and          the ship. First of all, its mass and cruise
Her Royal Highness Princess Máxima of         see incredible values for mixture velocity     speed mean that a stop must be
The Netherlands named and launched            and density appear. We express disbelief,      anticipated at a distance of about two
the vessel on 24 April 2009. The process      but the pipe operator just shrugs. And         miles in advance. Reducing speed too
of completion at the yard’s quay, basin       indeed, in just one hour, 56,000 tonnes        late makes the VOX MÁXIMA virtually
trials, sea trials and the transfer of ‘our   of dry solid sand are transferred to the       uncontrollable. So, before operations
princess’ to the owner, then followed.        deposit site. The bow coupling is              started, the navigators went through
                                              disconnected and the ship sails back to        specific training on the simulator at the
Working	with	the	VOX	MÁXIMA                   the loading site.                              Maritime Institute Willem Barentsz on
How is she performing? For an answer to                                                      the Dutch island of Terschelling. Even so,
that question, Ports and Dredging visited     Captain Cor Schot (1958) joined the            in practice... Secondly, the vessel is
the VOX MÁXIMA after three months’            building team on the day the keel was          relatively insensitive to heavy swell
work on the Maasvlakte 2 project and          laid. He started his career as a cutter        because of its size. So, the crew has
watched a full dredging cycle. The giant      suction dredger (CSD) operator with            learnt that the temptation is to carry on
gantries release the suction tube to the      HAM, one of the companies that make            working for too long in severe
bottom of the North Sea and the               up what is now Van Oord. His natural           conditions. That can result in enormous
powerful submerged pump fills the             talent was spotted and he worked his           forces being exerted on the suction pipe.
hopper with medium-class sand. With           way up to Master of All Ships. He feels        Now the crew has seen what can
the same level of ease, the gantries          honoured to be the captain of Van              happen, they keep a much closer watch
move the suction tube to the saddles          Oord’s flagship vessel (figure 7). During      on the barometer and the anemometer.
safely after dredging (figure 5). Then the    the building stage, he worked closely as
ship sails to the discharge connection        a member of Van Oord’s building team           The captain told us that his work on the
and the crew connect the floating             with the IHC Merwede team, conducted           building team involved working closely
pipeline to the bow coupling quickly and      numerous inspections and monitored             with the IHC Merwede yard on the
skilfully (figure 6). Now the true            the commissioning process. He says that        accessibility and safety of the ship and its
spectacle begins: jet water nozzles           the relatively short time needed to iron       equipment. He guided us around the
prepare a boiling ‘soup’ of the mixture in    out the ship’s teething troubles is due to     ship to show us how every item of

                                                                    13   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

 7                                                                       8

equipment, grease nipple and dangerous      The bridge’s control consoles combine          simultaneously driving both the
place can be accessed from appropriate      IHC Systems’ IHCS dredge control system        propeller shafts at low speed and the
stairs (figure 8) or platforms surrounded   and Van Oord’s VODAS dredge                    main generators at high speed.
by solid railings. Another example is the   automation system. The joint venture
seamless transition from the rope ladder    has proved to be successful. It is easy to     A	sight	for	sore	eyes
to a fixed steel handrail. Cor Schot can    operate, comprehensive and presents            Wherever you are on the VOX MÁXIMA,
take the credit for details like this.      everything clearly (figure 9), giving the      the main impression is one of space. She
                                            pipe operator just what he needs.              is so large, and the diesel-electric design
Working	on	board                            Duplicate displays on the navigator’s          of the dredging installation saves so
Our guided tour started on the bridge,      stand and in the engine control room           much space, that there is plenty of room
where the results of the ergonomic          pass on the information to the                 everywhere. The portside gangway
study conducted by Van Oord in the          appropriate crew members.                      resembles a footpath, the engine room
pre-building stage can be seen at first                                                    looks like a ballroom, the workspace is
hand. The recessed window to the aft of     We can be brief about the remainder of         spacious, and the stores and distribution
the bridge gives the navigator an           our tour. Of course, we walk past large        rooms are the size of halls. And the crew
unimpeded view of the entire aft ship,      dredge and jet pumps, intricate gland          love their ship.
including the suction tube. The dredge      pump circuits and MAN/B&W main                 You can sense it from the way they talk
control stand, located opposite the         diesel engines. Calmly thumping away,          about it, but everything you see on the
suction tube on the port side, provides     they supply 28,000 kilowatts. There are        ship confirms this: from the gangways to
an excellent view of the gantries – the     also: squealing hydraulic pumps;               the stores, the engine room to the
most critical components when loading       impressive switchboards for the                forecastle, the accommodation to the
stops and starts. The navigator has a       respective 6.6kV and 490V power                tool boards in the workspace, cleanliness
compact stand that provides all the         generation and distribution; the battery       and order prevail (figure 10).
relevant navigational, nautical and         of uninterrupted power supplies for the        VOX MÁXIMA really is a sight for sore
power information.                          many computers on board; and the               eyes. And not just because she is only a
                                            ingenious and compact main gearboxes,          few months old… The day before our

                                                                  14   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

                                                                       6 The crew connects the floating pipeline to the
                                                                         bow coupling quickly and safely

                                                                       7 Captain Cor Schot feels honoured to be the
                                                                         captain of Van Oord’s flagship

                                                                       8 Superb accessibility to every item of equipment

                                                                       9 IHC Systems’ IHCS dredge control system and Van
                                                                         Oord’s VODAS dredge automation system: a
                                                                         successful ‘joint venture’

 10                                                                    10 Cleanliness and order show the love of the crew
                                                                          for their ‘princess’

visit, she had been rainbowing against
the wind. When we arrived, the crew                                     Principal	features	VOX	MÁXIMA
were hard at work cleaning her, and
                                                                                      Built IHC Dredgers, Kinderdijk 2009
when we left, she was gleaming!
                                                                                   Owner Van Oord NV
Finally...                                                       Length overall (hull) 203m
The VOX MÁXIMA is an appropriate,
                                                       Length between perpendiculars 198m
reliable, highly efficient and robust
addition to the Van Oord fleet. She is the                                       Breadth 31m
result of excellent teamwork between a                                  Moulded depth 17.5m
top-class Dutch contractor and a
                                                             Depth at maximum load 14.5m
top-class Dutch shipbuilder, a gleaming
asset in the spirit of that splendid Dutch                             Hopper capacity 31,200m3
tradition: a dredging industry, at the                     Maximum dredging depth 125m
cutting edge of its field.
                                                               Suction pipe diameter 1,300 and 1,400mm
References                                                           Total installed power 31,272kW
[1] Ports and Dredging 170. IHC Merwede,                                  Speed, loaded 17 knots
Sliedrecht, 2008. This article refers to the ship as
                                                                       Accommodation 46 persons
the Vox Dubai, the name that was originally
intended. The change was made after HRH
Princess Máxima agreed to launch her.

                                                                15     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
Power	girls
Cutter	suction	dredgers	for	rock	cutting


                            16   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    1	 	 audian Huta Marine Works recently added
       AL SAKAB to its fleet, a dredger specially
       designed for the dredging of rock

    2	 	 ollapse of tensile strength and breakdown of
       scales during rock dredging

    3	 	 isplay showing cutter load during rock dredging

    IHC Merwede has built numerous cutter                  So, it is not sheer strength that defines
    suction dredgers (CSD). Every vessel is a              rock. Unconfined compressive strength
    quality product in its own right, meeting              (UCS) and tensile strength are the main
    all of the rules for design and function as            parameters here, along with other
    set by the industry [1].                               factors like rock quality designation
                                                           (RQD), layering and origin.
    Cutter dredgers can be used for a wide                 Unfortunately, most rock samples are
    range of dredging projects. They reclaim               mainly assessed using UCS and the other
    land from the sea, dredge entrance                     parameters are often unavailable. The
    channels and create or extend harbours                 table shows the usual rock classification.
    by removing soil from land. They are also
    used to clean up pollution and silt from                   Rock	classification   UCS	[MPa]
    rivers, lakes and canals. So, CSDs are                             Very weak 1.25 or less
    found in a variety of shapes and sizes:
                                                                            Weak 1.25-5
    from small to large, standardised to
    custom-built, and stationary to                             Moderately weak 5-12.5
    self-propelled.                                            Moderately strong     12.5-50

                                                                           Strong    50-100
    Many dredgers are designed to maximise
    availability. However, it sometimes                               Very strong    100-200
    makes sense to specialise. In the heavy                     Extremely strong     200 or more
    mineral mining industry, for example,
    dredging conditions will not vary
    dramatically, because the operating area               Rock	cutting:	CSD	design	rules	and	
    will remain the same for many years.                   considerations
    Similarly, contractors who always                      On general-purpose CSDs, the relation
    operate in a limited geographical area                 between required power and defined
    will probably see less varied dredging                 production, as well as the ratio between
    conditions. Dredging in the Middle East,               pump and cutter power, are determined
    for instance, always means a high                      by the soil characteristics. In loosely
    proportion of dredging in rock and                     packed sand, pump power – rather than
    cemented soils. Dredging in rock is                    cutter power – determines production.
    probably the most demanding type of                    In hard-packed sand and stiff clay,
    dredging. This article examines how the                however, full cutting power may be
    design of CSDs for rock dredging involves              needed to achieve the desired level of
    much more than installing a cutter head                production. So, the pump power/cutter
    with pick points and high-installed                    power ratio is a measure for production
    power.                                                 performance in different soils, together
                                                           with the transportation distance.
    Cutting	rock
    Rock is a brittle material. So, the normal             By contrast, CSDs that cut rock
    physical design parameters for cutting                 repeatedly carve and break down rock
    tools working with ductile materials –                 scales, generating repeated peaks and
    like stiff clay – don’t apply. Cutting rock is         sharp falls in cutting forces. This results
    not cutting in the normal sense of the                 in a relatively low average cutter load.
    word; it is more like continuous carving.              The peaks in the forces must be
    When cutter teeth touch rock, they don’t               absorbed by the cutter drive, which
    penetrate as they would with sand or                   therefore needs a considerable torque
    clay. After repeated contact, tensile                  and power reserve above the nominal
    strength suddenly collapses and a small                design value (figure 3).
    or a large section breaks down (figure 2).

                    17    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
There are additional implications:              (ACC) results in considerable dampening                    L
                                                                                                        4	 	 adders for rock-cutting CSDs are carefully
                                                                                                           calculated with FEM
• More than when dredging sand or clay,         of cutter force peaks and overshoot.
  cutter power determines production.           The dredge pumps and associated                            A
                                                                                                        5	 	 LBZEM: note the relatively heavy, box-shaped
                                                                                                           cutter ladder and the long cutter shaft
  So, rock CSDs are usually equipped            gearboxes for the rock CSDs must be
  with high-powered cutters, both in            heavy-duty. This is a result of the                        T
                                                                                                        6	 	 he SAMSUNG NEW PIONEER, an example of a
                                                                                                           multi-purpose CSD
  absolute terms and in relation to the         intermittent variable loads linked to rock
  pump power, as the table in the ‘vessel       scales of different dimensions and
  overview’ section shows.                      quality. For the same reason, the sphere
• The cutter head must be electrically          passage in the dredge pump impellers
  driven because hydraulic cutter drives        needs to be as large as possible. The
  have no peak load reserves. If gear-          Cutter Special® pump was developed
  boxes are applied, they must be               specially for this purpose. It combines a
  heavy duty.                                   large sphere passage with good suction
• A long cutter shaft is required to            properties and high efficiency.
  ‘elasticise’ peaks using the natural
  torsion of the shaft.                         The spud and spud carrier mechanism
• The cutter bearing should not be a            must be sturdier than is usual on CSDs in
  roller or plain metal type, but a rubber      order to handle the large reaction forces
  bush bearing, flushed and ‘lubricated’        and force peaks generated by cutting
  with water to prevent damage and to           rock.
  dampen vibrations.
                                                Finally, the high level of vibration and
Of course, on general-purpose CSDs, the         variations in force mean that the
maximum vertical ladder reaction force          superstructure, accommodation and
needs to provide ample counterbalance           machinery on rock CSDs must be more
for nominal cutting forces, including           carefully designed to prevent vibration,
dynamic effects. For CSDs cutting rock,         noise and metal fatigue than on
this requirement is even more important         ‘standard’ CSDs. IHC Merwede’s
to cope with the large reaction forces that     experience and integrated design
can be directed upwards as a                    approach can help to attain these goals.
consequence of the repeated bouncing of
the cutter teeth against the rock material.     Vessel	overview
The cutter ladder also needs to be heavy        The table below compares the installed
and box-shaped, so that it presses the          pump power in a selection of CSDs built
cutter against the rock at all times.           over the past 15 years to the installed
Ladders for dredgers of this kind are           cutter power. It is then possible to make
carefully calculated using the finite           some broad conclusions.                                   5
element method (FEM) and, if necessary,
reinforced with thicker and/or high-                                                                   Pump	power	         Cutter	power	        Ratio	pump/	
                                                     Vessel          Owner               Year             [kW]                 [kW]             cutter	power
tensile steel (figure 4). The strength of the
ladder has of course to be mirrored by              ALBZEM          EDC, UAE             2007              1,825                1,100                1.66
the quality and strength of the ladder
trunnions, as well as by the construction          JFJ DE NUL       J De Nul             2003              15,800              6,000                 2.63

and execution of the spuds and spud
                                                  D’ARTAGNAN         DEME                2005              15,400              4,400                 3.50
carrier, which exert the huge forces to the
sea floor (figure 5).                               AL MIRFA         NMDC                2000              6,380                1,500                4.25

The swing winches on a CSD cutting rock             AL SADR          NMDC                1999             10,600                2,200                4.82
and the associated gearboxes differ from
general-purpose CSDs, because they have            MASSHOUR        SCA, Egypt            1996              13,200               2,400                5.50
to handle the variable cutting forces and
                                                 BEAVER 9029C      Sinohydro             2010              8,900                1,500                5,93
force peaks. So, they need almost the
same relative torque and power reserves             AL SAKAB      Huta Marine            2010              15,700               2,600                6.04
as the cutter drive, but in four-quadrant                           Works
operation. Ideally, they can be driven           SAMSUNG NEW      Samsung E&C            1996              8,910                1,050                8.49
using constant torque. This new feature in          PIONEER

the latest IHC Systems’ artificial                IHC 8527MP®    Chinese owners          2010              9,400                1,100                8.55
intelligence automatic cutter controller

                                                                      18     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
                   It is no surprise that CSDs designed for rock cutting,
                   particularly the ALBZEM and following vessels, have
                   a small pump-to-cutter power ratio.
                   It is equally unsurprising that these dredgers are
                   mainly operated by contractors working in the
                   Middle East, where rocky beds are the predominant
                   feature of their backyard. Of course, the Belgian
                   operators with the two most powerful players in the
                   game – JFJ DE NUL and D’ARTAGNAN – wanted to be
                   prepared for Middle East dredging and so they made
                   sure that they had excellent rock dredging
                   properties. This table shows that the two dredgers at
4                  the other end of the spectrum, the SAMSUNG NEW
                   PIONEER and the IHC 8527MP®, are more multi-
                   purpose CSDs, even though their cutter power is not
                   exactly low. However, it is clear that continuous
                   dredge rocking is not their forte.
                   Even so, even at Ports and Dredging, it is surprising
                   that the very last number in the table betrays the
                   design purpose of the IHC 8527MP® – transporting
                   large amounts of sand over long distances!

                   Each CSD leaving an IHC Merwede shipyard meets all
                   the design criteria in its own way, after careful
                   tailoring to the specific requirements of its new
                   owner. However, as we have seen, it takes more
                   than a cutter head with pick points and impressive
                   nominal power on the cutter to make a rock dredger
                   from a CSD. A number of possibilities, drive
                   alternatives and design standards have to be taken
                   into account to arrive at a carefully balanced design
                   that can manage the extreme conditions associated
                   with cutting rock.

                   IHC Merwede has acquired a treasure trove of
                   experience with these design criteria and the
                   practical and technical subtleties of building and
                   operating cutter dredgers. Roughly 50 per cent of
                   the cutter dredgers in the world come from
                   IHC Merwede. As you read this, more than ten CSDs
                   will be under construction or on order. Eight of them
                   will be general-purpose, high-production dredging
                   vessels. The other two are heavy self-propelled
                   cutter dredgers. The D’ARTAGNAN and the JFJ DE NUL
                   can look forward to some challenging company!

                   [1] ‘Functional requirements of cutter dredgers’. Ports and
                   Dredging 147. IHC Holland, Sliedrecht, 1996.


    19   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    SEVEN	ATLANTIC	commissioned
    IHC	Offshore	&	Marine	builds	unique	
    Diving	Support	Vessel	(DSV)

                              20   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
1 The SEVEN ATLANTIC during her sea trials

Customer                                            IHC Offshore & Marine focuses on large,
The SEVEN ATLANTIC (figure 1) recently              custom-built, specialised and high-end
went into service for Subsea7 in the                offshore vessels.
North Sea. Subsea7 is one of the world’s
leading subsea engineering and                      IHC Offshore & Marine places a strong
construction companies, servicing the oil           emphasis on its primary process. With
and gas industry. Its skilled and                   custom-built vessels for different niche
experienced international workforce, in             markets, the only repetitive factor is the
excess of 5,000 personnel, supports its             process itself. Building a complex
onshore and offshore operations in                  custom-built vessel involves a high
Africa, Asia Pacific, Brazil, North America         degree of specific knowledge, but it is
and the North Sea.                                  not always possible – or desirable – to
                                                    retain all of this in-house. The primary
Subsea7 has a strong focus on the                   process starts with the design stage,
growing high-tech and valuable                      before the contract is signed.
deepwater subsea umbilical, riser and
flow line markets in Africa, Asia Pacific,          Functional	requirements
Brazil and the Gulf of Mexico, and at the           Subsea7’s decision to select IHC Offshore
same time retains a leading role in the             & Marine after a rigorous tender process
North Sea. It is respected globally for its         made perfect sense. From the beginning,
excellent project management and                    there were new market trends and
execution capabilities, and a strong                requirements that needed to be
emphasis on safety. It offers the full              addressed. In recent years, the need for
spectrum of products and services to                more efficient, cost-effective and
deliver Subsea Field Developments and               versatile offshore vessels has increased.
Life-of-Field (LoF) services to customers.          In addition, the most complete support
                                                    package for construction, inspection,
Subsea7 has a fleet of over 20 world-               maintenance and production in oil and
class pipelay, construction, remotely               gas fields is required. Fully integrated,
operated vehicle and diving support                 well-balanced and reliable multi-purpose
vessels. In recent years, the fleet has             offshore vessels are the appropriate
undergone a capital investment                      response.
programme to the value of more than
$1billion to upgrade and expand its                 Subsea7 set out several challenging
capability and capacity, and in particular          performance criteria for the vessel:
to serve deepwater markets. In addition,            • Operation in the North Sea without
its offshore operations are supported by              resupply for 60 days
a number of global pipeline fabrication             • A clear aft-deck area of 1,200 square
and logistics bases, such as the recently             metres
opened pipeline fabrication spool base              • The ability to carry 3,000 tonnes of
at Port Isabel in the Gulf of Mexico.                 deck cargo
                                                    • Heave compensation and station-
Builder                                               keeping suitable for working in seas of
IHC Offshore & Marine has outstanding                 4.5-metre Hs
resources and facilities for designing and          • A saturation diving complex for
constructing vessels using innovative                 24 divers
concepts and modern engineering                     • A self-contained treatment system
techniques, whether they are one-off                  and storage capacity for subsea oil
ships or limited series. This is confirmed            and gas wells
by a distinguished track record of highly           • Outstanding station-keeping features.
distinctive designs.

               21    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
                                 2                                                        3

These requirements meant that the              Intermezzo:	deep-sea	diving                     to ensure that they remain saturated
vessel needed a large tank capacity, a         Saturation divers generally work at water       and are protected against hypothermia.
large internal volume for the diving units     depths of more than 50 metres, and              In short, the whole complex of
and storage, high-pressure pumps and           when working at those pressures must            pressurised chambers and artificial
outstanding stability.                         live within a ‘saturation diving chamber’       breathing allows the divers to operate in
                                               when onboard the diving support vessel.         shifts, take time off and sleep without
Approach                                       The saturation divers breathe a special         the need to decompress.
Subsea7 was one of the prominent               mix of helium and oxygen in the
knowledge partners in the development          chamber that has been carefully                 Vessel
of the SEVEN ATLANTIC. Subsea7                 balanced to suit the respective water           The SEVEN ATLANTIC was built as a DPIII-
designers cooperated closely with              depth and pressure that they will be            classified vessel in accordance with the
IHC Merwede’s Offshore & Marine                working at. This prevents them from             Rules and Regulations of Lloyd’s Register.
division and the dive spread                   suffering the serious effects of                It was given the following notation:
manufacturer. Integrated partnership and       decompression. Vital safety standards           “Lloyd’s Register of Shipping ✠100A1,
collaboration require trust, commercial        imply greater complexity and more               Diving Support Vessel, UD strength for
and technical transparency, a match of         measures to safeguard the availability of       load of 10t/m², Helicopter Landing Area,
cultures and a shared goal. The yard, in its   this saturation diving complex, as will be      ✠LMC, UMS, DP(AAA), CAC(2), EP, ICC.”
role of system integrator, takes vigorous      detailed below.                                 The vessel also complies with the
action to ensure that these conditions are                                                     regulations of the Isle of Man
fulfilled – integration always implies         The artificial breathing mixture replaces       authorities. It is a fully dynamic
equality between all parties irrespective      nitrogen in normal breathing air with           positioned diving support/offshore
of the company, knowledge or revenue.          helium. The oxygen percentage in the            construction vessel, suitable for
Therefore, terms incompatible with             mixture of oxygen and helium (heliox)           unrestricted worldwide operations.
equality – like ‘sub-contractor’ and           can be adjusted to the depth of the dive.       It has been specifically designed for
‘principal contractor’ – are abandoned.        This artificial gas saturates the diver         saturation and air diving support work in
The idea is to bring knowledge partners        during his period under pressure.               environmental conditions, which many
closer together, allowing the creation and                                                     existing similar vessels are unable to
preservation of a tightly-knit team during     A diving bell (figure 2) takes the divers to    cope with.
all phases of the project, resulting in an     the working depth. It has a launch and
optimal team effort. Of course,                recovery connection and an umbilical            The vessel was designed with the
communication is the vital element in this     connection to the ship. The umbilical           required redundancy of all DP,
process.                                       feeds hot water and heliox to the divers        propulsion, and manoeuvring-related

                                                                      22   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
                                                                                                                         2	 Diving bell interior

                                                                                                                         3	 Three azimuth-
                                                                                                                            type main thrusters

                                                                                                                         4	 The sleeping
                                                                                                                            compartment in
                                                             4                                                              the saturation

systems. The integrated saturation           the forward part of the vessel and one         volume of seven cubic metres, take the
diving twin-bell system has a capacity for   transverse thruster has been installed in      divers to the subsea work site. The diving
24 divers at a maximum operating depth       a tunnel forward. As a result, no single       bells are deployed through moon pools
of 350 metres. It provides the divers with   failure – including the loss of any            located amidships, minimising the effect
advanced levels of comfort and safety        individual compartment due to fire or          of ship-induced motion on bell
standards. The ship also has:                flooding – can interfere with the vessel’s     operations. The launch and recovery
an internally mounted well-treatment         position-keeping capability.                   system spans multiple decks in the
system; two observation class ROVs; a                                                       superstructure and includes four
120-tonne heave-compensated offshore         Diving	installation’s	integration              electrically driven winches per bell, plus
crane; facilities for a complement of 150    The integrated saturated diving system is      a heave compensation gantry system
(not including divers); a clear working      located amidships and can accommodate          and a bell handling trolley system for
deck area of 1,200 square metres; and        24 divers (eight teams of three).              manipulating the recovered diving bell to
the service provisions for work-class ROV    The system is suitable for operations in       a side mating position with the
connections (and others). Twin-air           water depths of up to 350 metres. The          saturation chamber complex.
stations for dives with a limited depth      24-person saturation chamber complex           The SEVEN ATLANTIC has very large
and twin observation-class ROV               occupies a superstructure compartment          storage capacity for diver breathing gases,
deployment systems have been                 spanning the full width of the ship.           a gas and air management system, an
integrated into the vessel. The SEVEN        It complies with Norwegian NORSOK              atmospheric treatment system and a
ATLANTIC can also carry a 3,000-tonne        requirements and provides exceptional          dive-and-chamber control room. The
carousel and a 12-metre air-diving           improvements in living conditions for the      ultra-modern saturation and dive control
daughter craft on the aft deck.              divers (figure 4). The chambers have an        system is one of the first in the world that
                                             external diameter of approximately             no longer works with manually operated
The layout of the 6.6kV integrated           2.45 metres. Two transversely located          valves – it is an entirely PLC/SCADA
electric power generation and                and pressurised transfer chambers allow        controlled dive-by-wire system.
propulsion system is for DP3. This implies   access to the diving bells without
redundancy and the total separation of       disturbing the other divers. The living        The integration of this dive installation
any thruster installation, minimising the    chambers are arranged longitudinally in        is a fantastic achievement by IHC
risk of fire or flooding. The main           the ship and consist of four three-man         Merwede’s Offshore & Marine division.
propulsion system comprises of three         and two six-man twin-lock chambers.            Everything depends on the volatility of
electrically driven fixed pitch propellers   There are two 18-man hyperbaric                the heliox-breathing mixture. Helium gas
in azimuth nozzles aft (figure 3). There     lifeboats connected to the system.             molecules are so small that normal
are two retractable azimuth thrusters in     Two diving bells, measuring an internal        industrial pipe couplings and rubber

                                                                   23   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

hoses – which are perfectly sealed for           From	the	bridge...                             to complete work faster than many
water, air and oil – leak heliox. So, all the    The SEVEN ATLANTIC has been working            comparable vessels. We look forward to
connections from the heliox tank and             in the southern sector of the British part     working with Shell, and our other clients
preparation unit had to be designed with         of the North Sea for Shell, as well as         who will utilise this vessel, in the safe
adapted couplings, expansion pieces and          completing various inspection jobs in the      and timely delivery of the various work
without any hoses. Any tension in the            Dutch sector, since commencing work on         scopes it will undertake over the next
pipes and connections must be avoided.           26 March 2010. The vessel has                  few years.”
This results in a maximum tolerance for          completed over 100 saturation dives and
main-deck diagonal strain-induced                over ten surface (air) dives as part of its    Ports and Dredging spoke to Paul
deformation of only 1.5 millimetres!             first work scope.                              Squance, one of the SEVEN ATLANTIC’s
                                                 The SEVEN ATLANTIC is being utilised to        captains. He explained that, in the few
Finite element method (FEM)                      service the long-term underwater               months it has been in operation, the
calculations were used to obtain this and        services contract Subsea7 holds with           vessel has completed several jobs in the
the huge saturation chambers were                Shell Entities, operating in Europe, for       North Sea (figure 5). In most cases, these
placed on sleeve pieces. So, there is no         inspection, repair and maintenance             have required the simultaneous
tension or strain at all on any breathing        programmes. It is also being used for          deployment of all of the vessel’s
mixture connection in the vessel’s               some of Shell’s capital projects and           equipment: diving bells, main crane,
specified working conditions (these are          decommissioning works across its               auxiliary cranes, A-frames, ROVs and so
tailored to a significant wave height of         offshore fields and facilities.                on. The Captain says that the ship is
4.5 metres).                                     Steph McNeill, Vice President for Subsea7’s    unique in the world – a five-star vessel
                                                 UK region, commented: “Everyone is             for working, accommodation and diving.
Subsea7 and IHC Offshore & Marine                very pleased with the SEVEN ATLANTIC’s         He and his crew love the design. They
invested heavily in the failure mode and         performance so far. The vessel was built       think that it is entirely fit for the purpose
effect analysis (FMEA), and a test               to have an exceptionally good sea-             for which it was intended, allowing them
programme lasting several months.                keeping capability and has already             to perform any diving job imaginable
Quality and safety were given priority           successfully demonstrated this by              and giving them the facilities to work for
above delivery time to maximise the              holding station, landing helicopters and       up to 60 days offshore without resupply.
reliability, availability, maintainability and   continuing to work in the extreme sea          With its superior station-keeping
safety of the ship and its crew.                 conditions experienced on its first            performance in extreme weather
                                                 project. It is built and equipped for at       conditions, the vessel is capable of
                                                 least 60 days at-sea endurance and is          supporting operations throughout the
                                                 demonstrating its ability and efficiencies     year. With its large deck, state-of-the-art

                                                                       24   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
                                                                                                                   5	 The SEVEN ATLANTIC at
                                                                                                                      work (courtesy Subsea7)

                                                                                                                   6	 The innovative dive control
  6                                                                                                                   system is the first of its
                                                                                                                      kind in the world

diving systems, integrated support            ATLANTIC effectively represents one of          It proves once again that IHC Merwede
equipment and high levels of                  the first of a new generation of ships.         Offshore & Marine division’s customers
redundancy, the vessel has been               It is more technically advanced and             really do receive value for money, not
designed to maximise productive time in       capable than many similar vessels in the        only in the building stage, but also
the field and the efficiency of working       market and leading the way in improving         throughout the lifetime of the vessels.
campaigns. The vessel further enhances        the efficiency of subsea operations.
Subsea7’s ongoing commitment to
ensure safe and timely project delivery                                  Principal	features	SEVEN	ATLANTIC
for its clients.
                                                                          Commissioned IHC Offshore & Marine B.V. 2010
The Captain, who was a member of the                                                  Type Diving Support/Offshore Construction
building team and worked together with                                                     Vessel
the IHC Merwede team to meet the                                   Length overall (hull) 144.79m
challenge of delivering the ship, is highly
                                                 Length between PP on design draught 128.96m
enthusiastic about the reliability and
maintainability of the vessel. He recalls                               Breadth moulded 26.00m
that it was tested more intensively than                    Depth main deck moulded 12.00m
any previous ocean-going vessel and so
                                                              Draught design moulded 7.00m
has operated without any failure or
interruption from day one. He believes                      Draught scantling moulded 8.00m
that the joint IHC Merwede and Subsea7              Deadweight all told at design draught Approx. 8,700 tonnes
teams have done an extraordinary job.
                                               Deadweight all told at scantling draught Approx. 11,000 tonnes
Conclusion                                                                      Deck area 1,200m2
The introduction of this DSV to the                                       Offshore crane 120t @ 15m SWL
market has provided Subsea7 with one
                                                                          Diving capacity 24-man saturation diving system, rated
of the most versatile and advanced
                                                                                          at 350 metres
diving vessels currently available.
Suitable for unrestricted worldwide                 Total installed diesel-electric power 20,160kW
operation and specifically designed for                                 Economical speed 13.6+ knots
saturation and air diving support
                                                                         Accommodation 150 people
operations in the North Sea, the SEVEN

                                                                   25     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
Fixing	up	a	casualty	of	war
IHC	Parts	&	Services	Europe	renovates	severely	
damaged	Beaver	dredger

                           26   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
1	 	A late and distorted casualty of World War II

The	explosion                                        possibly even more severe. The blow to
During the night of Saturday 10 October              the ladder and shock wave had
2009, a three-year-old IHC Beaver®                   propagated both mechanically and
6522C, with the rather unimaginative                 hydraulically along the pumping line and
name of M30, was calmly working                      lifted up the engine pontoon. The
through layer after layer of soil in the lively      bearings of the swivelling gearbox for the
harbour of Wilhelmshaven, Germany.                   dredge pump were damaged, the pump
Suddenly, the two crew members saw a                 diesel engine had been torn off its
dazzling green/white flash and... then               silencers and the dredge pump housing
nothing. They had been knocked out cold              was broken into several pieces – not to
and didn’t even hear the bang or see the             mention the minor damage! As one of the
fountain of water that alarmed fellow                owner’s inspectors joked: “Such quality
workers in the vicinity. They recovered              after 65 years of rusting – it must have
after some treatment, thankfully without             been a German mine!”
any lasting harm.
The same can’t be said for the ship.                 The owner of the unfortunate dredger is
It looks as if the cutter head hit a mine            Josef Möbius Bau-Aktiengesellschaft. The
dating back to the Second World War,                 Hamburg-based company is a successful
when the port of Wilhelmshaven was not               operator in dredging and construction for
just a lively marine base, but also a                rivers and dikes, ports, roadways, tunnels
favourite target for the Allies. The mine            and airports. Möbius specialises in
did exactly what its makers intended,                challenging and complex projects, and it
blasting the ladder and the front of the             has the required in-house capabilities and
dredger out of the water.                            project management skills. In September
                                                     2007, STRABAG SE acquired a major
In the aftermath, technical inspectors               interest in Josef Möbius AG, with the
were hastily called in from the owner and            leading German ‘wet’ construction firm
IHC Parts & Services’ RIO Europe. The                complementing STRABAG’s capacity in
dredger was severely damaged. The front              ‘dry’ construction work. Möbius can draw
of the pontoons had suffered typical mine            on a fleet of four trailing suction hopper
damage. As the vessel smashed back into              dredgers (TSHD) – with two new vessels
the water, the resultant forces had                  under construction – five cutter suction
pressed the steel plating inwards to form            dredgers (CSD), two booster stations and
hollow squares between the frame webs.               the necessary auxiliary craft. There are
The damage to the robust cutter ladder               also a number of large ‘wet’ and ‘dry’
was more obvious – the lower section was             excavators. Dedicated vehicles for dry
one metre out of position, rendering it              construction do the work onshore.
useless. The cutter head and cutter shaft
had vanished, and the cutter shield was in           The firm has achieved ISO 9001
a strange position (figure 1). One of the            certification and assembled a small, yet
ladder trunnions had also been moved                 outstanding technical team that maintains
out of position and even the spud carrier            the fleet and designs, manufactures and
cylinder had been distorted. The operator            tests bespoke equipment. They had the
cabin had broken off the swing absorbers             expertise to realign the M30’s distorted
and moved about 40 centimetres (figure 2).           spud poles.
On the outside… so far, so bad.
                                                     Möbius and IHC Merwede are old
An extensive inspection of the inside of             acquaintances, but not for floating
the dredger identified damage that was               dredgers as the M30 is its only IHC-built

                27    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
  2                                                                     3

2 The operator cabin, torn off and dropped     4 A replacement makes sense
  40 centimetres from its original position
                                               5	 	 he IHC Beavers’ modular structure protects
3 In Kinderdijk                                   them from exploding ammunition

                                               6		 Restored to her former glory

dredger. However, over the years Möbius        To guarantee optimal life-cycle support for            Ron Verschoor and Engineer Nico van
has equipped many of its excavators with       its customers, IHC Parts & Services                    Leeuwen joined forces and worked
IHC Systems’ advanced eXcavator Position       operates close to their sites.                         intensively with IHC Beaver Dredgers,
Monitor (XPM) and actually helped to                                                                  IHC Parts & Services Fabrication,
push this IHC Merwede business unit to         One of the RIOs is IHC Parts & Services                IHC Merwede Repair and OEM suppliers.
extend its knowledge and expertise. Only       Europe (RIO Europe), which shares                      The first step was to position the entire
a few months ago, IHC Systems installed        premises with Merwede Ship Repair in                   dredger on the large vessel lift at
the world’s first high-tech, artificial        Hardinxveld Giessendam. A 24/7 support                 IHC Beaver Dredgers for a complete
intelligence-based Automatic eXcavator         service is available for emergency repairs             inspection, clearly exposing the damage
Controller (AXC) on a mighty Liebherr 994      and/or rapid solutions for engineering                 to the front of the side pontoons.
machine. This automated system allows          issues. Questions about spare parts
excavators to cut a pre-defined profile        deliveries also come in through RIO                    The journey continued to Kinderdijk,
from a given area and load the excavated       Europe. There are in-house repair                      where the large hall of IHC Parts &
material into barges – precisely and           facilities, ensuring direct control over               Services Fabrication was used to break up
automatically – just like a CNC machine        emergency repairs.                                     the dredger into parts. As regular readers
cuts shapes from metal. The aim is to          RIO Europe also acts as a front office for             may recall, this is a straightforward job
boost production figures in homogenous         other IHC Merwede-related questions.                   thanks to the vessel’s modular
soil types. In a later issue of Ports and                                                             construction. The pontoons were towed
Dredging, we will be exploring this subject    The	road	to	recovery                                   to IHC Merwede Repair to repair the
again with Josef Möbius.                       RIO Europe made a thorough analysis of                 damage to the front. Bureau Veritas
                                               the possible far-reaching consequences of              carried out the inspection and a new
IHC	Parts	&	Services	RIO	Europe	               the visible damage to the M30 and                      approval certificate was issued for
IHC specialists are located all around the     submitted a tender to Möbius.                          operations in coastal waters. In the
world in Regional IHC Organisations (RIO),     The German company accepted the                        meantime, the ladder winch was sent to
with six currently in operation. The offices   tender and awarded the job to IHC                      IHC Hytop for preventive testing and the
are located in Singapore, China, Dubai,        Merwede. The job read: “Completely                     combined velocity/density transmitter
India, The Netherlands and Nigeria.            repair and commission the M30 until she                found its way to IHC Systems for the
Efficient dredger operations require           complies with the original specification.”             replacement of its lining of extremely
different approaches during the life cycle     After some delays, the dredger arrived in              wear-resistant aluminium oxide tiles, and
of a vessel. IHC Parts & Services provides     Kinderdijk (figure 3) in the first week of             testing the safety and alignment of the
solutions for all these stages under the       February and the scheduled completion                  sealed radioactive source.
banner of IHC Life Cycle Support.              and delivery was for the first half of June.
It consists of maintenance engineering,                                                               The repair work carried out on the ladder
docking and ship repair, renovation,           As a one-stop shop, RIO Europe can                     was a major job. The construction is too
component repair, field services, dredging     draw on the resources of the whole                     strong to be realigned mechanically and
consultancy and dredger management.            IHC Merwede group. So, Project Manager                 so an ingenious solution was found – the

                                                                            28    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

  5                                           6

production of an intermediate piece to       In the second week of June, the                 IHC Beaver® contributes to this
compensate for the deviation. The newly      overhauled dredger was reassembled,             invulnerability (figure 6). The modules
manufactured lower ladder section also       recommissioned (figure 5) and towed             are connected by a number of pins and
eliminates any deviation. In addition, the   across the North Sea to the relieved            drawbars that act like breaker bolts and
ladder trunnions were loosened, realigned    owner, ready to resume operations in the        protect the structure and seaworthiness
and stiffened once again. Later, when the    JadeWeserPort at Wilhelmshaven.                 of the ship. So, IHC Merwede has a new
rest of the job had been completed, the                                                      and unexpected unique selling point!
ladder was replaced on its hinges.           Conclusions
Repeated and precise 3D measurements         Although this was not a consideration in        Finally, this case has again proved that the
followed as the ladder was aligned to        the design phase, it is remarkable that         IHC Merwede RIO network, which is only
comply with the original specification,      IHC Beavers are relatively invulnerable to      a few years old, has matured and is able to
ensuring that the vessel would dredge        such fierce explosions. There are examples      cope with versatile projects. So, customers
accurately again.                            of comparable CSDs sinking after                are advised to go to one of the RIOs when
                                             ammunition explosions and this remains          unexpected problems occur. There, they
The submerged dredge pump was a lost         a risk with many dredging operations            will find a one-stop shop geared towards
cause (figure 4) and the entire unit was     despite all the preventive magnetic             solving their problems and getting round
replaced, including the pedestal and         surveys and measures. It has emerged            the need to contact a host of suppliers.
bearings. As for the machinery, all the      that the modular arrangement of the
gearboxes were carefully inspected,
overhauled and examined under load by                                         Principal	features	M30
the OEM. Fortunately, the damage was                                                     Built IHC Beaver Dredgers, 2007
not as extensive as expected. In contrast,
                                                                                         Type IHC Beaver® 6522C
there were odd wear patterns in the
diesel engines and so they had to be                                                  Owner Joseph Möbius Bau-Aktiengesellschaft
totally disassembled, reassembled and                                         Length overall 64.90/73.60/80.70m
overhauled. They were then tested at full
                                                                         Length of pontoon 48.00m
load and found to comply with the original
specification. To avoid unwanted increases                                           Breadth 12.44m
in vibration levels, a host of other                                       Average draught 2.97m
machinery was inspected, aligned and
                                                         Dredging depth with cutter max. 22.00m
renewed, including shafts, couplings, pins
and wire sheaves. And last but not least,      Dredging depth deep suction installation max. 30.00/35.00m
the operator cabin was returned to its                            Discharge pipe diameter 650mm
original position.
                                                                               Cutter power 585kW
                                                                       Total installed power 2,889kW

                                                                  29     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    Powerful	Chinese	CSDs	working
    IHC	8527MP®	goes	into	service


                              30   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    1	 	 emonstrating the features for independent
       operation, the first IHC 8527MP® during basin

    2 Dalian Liaonan Shipyard

    3 Easily serviceable dredge pumps with fully
      exchangeable wear parts are characteristic of
      recent IHC Merwede-quality dredgers

    Introduction                                        The final mix was a constructive solution
    It is not long since IHC Merwede                    providing Chinese dredging contractors
    developed a sophisticated approach to               with low costs of ownership and allowing
    satisfy the typical operational                     the shipyards to increase turnover and
    requirements of the Chinese dredging                Chinese content. The local parties also
    market and its huge demand for new                  acquire experience by building hulls and
    equipment. By this method, Chinese                  accommodation for dredgers, and
    shipyards team up with IHC Merwede to               supplying engine room equipment such
    build standardised cutter suction                   as diesel engines, generators and auxiliary
    dredgers (CSD). The quality of the                  components.
    dredgers is safeguarded by the role of
    IHC Merwede in supplying design, crucial            IHC Merwede delivers the elements of
    parts and subsystems, building                      design, drawings, essential dredging-
    supervision, commissioning and financial            related components, building supervision
    support [1]. Dalian Liaonan Shipyard                and commissioning. Some of the essential
    (figure 2) in the Chinese province of               components are produced at IHC Merwede
    Liaoning emerged as the main partner in             locations in The Netherlands, China
    this long-term pooling of resources.                (Guangzhou) or elsewhere. Other items
                                                        are produced at Chinese factories
    In general terms, typical ‘Chinese’ CSDs            appointed by IHC Merwede as trusted
    must be powerful, versatile and sturdy,             suppliers. There are also extensive
    and they are expected to cope with long             services available from the Regional
    discharge distances. They often have to             IHC Organisations (RIOs) in China.
    operate in remote areas and this implies a          IHC Engineering Services in Kinderdijk
    high degree of autonomy. These demands              – which coordinates the process – calls it
    are apparent in the design. The vessels             ‘new building in cooperation’ (figure 4).
    have anchor booms, extensive
    accommodation and spud tilting facilities.          The	origin	of	the	‘Chinese’	CSD	line
    They can replace the cutter head with a             The programme’s success for all parties
    dredging wheel for operations in tough              started with the emergence of the
    soils. Essential components are highly              IHC 7025MP®, a CSD with installed power
    wear-resistant and interchanges on and              of 5,575kW, a discharge pipeline diameter
    between ships are fast and easy –                   of 70 centimetres, a suction depth of
    reducing the cost of ownership (figure 3).          25 metres, accommodation for 12 people
    There is extensive standardisation and              and, of course, anchor booms. In no time,
    the emphasis is on durability, optimised            22 of them were under contract for
    stock levels and uptime.                            Chinese contractors and most of them are
                                                        already in service on various projects.
    The Chinese market also requires a
    careful balance between customer needs,             The	birth	of	the	IHC	8527MP®
    government policies and economic                    The outstanding efficiency of these ‘small’
    constraints. Other factors include                  IHC 7025MPs closely paralleled increasing
    IHC Merwede’s ambitions to be ‘the                  demand for greater dredging capacity and
    technology innovator’ and the market                longer discharge distances.
    leader in dredging-related ship and                 So IHC Merwede developed a medium-
    equipment construction, and the Chinese             sized CSD with installed power of more than
    ambition to gradually develop dredging              13,000kW, a maximum dredging depth
3   knowledge and craftsmanship.                        of 27 metres and a delivery pipe diameter

                    31   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
of 85 centimetres. This IHC 8527MP®            domestic coal transportation and it               multifunctional and versatile. With only
(figure 1) boasts a design that combines       recently branched out into dredger                some small adaptations, the dredger can
functionality and patented aesthetics.         operations. Four IHC 7025MP® CSDs have            even handle muddy soil, achieving
The fully electric winches and cutter drive    provided the benchmark for its dredging           production figures of about 70,000 cubic
cope efficiently with the larger loads.        fleet until now and their success inspired        metres per day in situ. To manage the
As well as a submerged dredge pump,            G&H Shunhang to order no fewer than six           swell conditions, IHC Merwede is
two inboard dredge pumps help to attain        IHC 8527MP® dredgers!                             investigating whether a standard
production figures as high as 3,000 cubic                                                        conversion kit can be designed to equip
metres per hour in situ with a delivery        The first job of the GANGHAI JUN 516 was          the dredger with a flexible spud carrier
length of approximately 12,000 metres.         near the port of Shantou, a city of about         similar to those developed for the IHC
Amazingly – and this is typical of the trust   five million inhabitants on the east coast        Beaver® CSDs. This would considerably
that has developed between the Chinese         of the province of Guangdong. It used to          enhance the operational window [2].
contractors and IHC Merwede – eight of         be one of the treaty ports dedicated to
these innovative dredgers have been sold       western trade in the 19th century and is          And	her	sister	ship
so far on the basis of the drawings alone.     currently one of China’s Special Economic         The GANGHAI JUN 526, the second
Two of them will be equipped with the          Zones. It is the economic centre of               IHC 8527MP®, is working at Cao Fei Dian
IHC Systems’ Automatic Cutter Controller.      eastern Guangdong and home to a                   (CFD), a huge land reclamation project for
As you read this, two of the dredgers are      university and extensive industrial activity      the Tangshan city in the northern Hebei
already operational. Given the                 in textile and garments, printing and             province. CFD is a promising and
expectations, it is time to report on          packaging, chemical plastics, toys and            favourable location for the development
performance. Are the vessels living up to      other products for export.                        of deepwater harbour and harbour-
the promise of their specifications?           The dredger was deployed for a major              related industries. With its imported iron
                                               land reclamation project in the area.             ore, oil, crude salt, coal and maritime
The	trail	blazer...                                                                              resources, CFD will give priority to the
After an intensive commissioning period        At the start of this project, extremely           development of iron/steel and equipment
for the fine-tuning of the design and the      soft and muddy soil had to be dredged.            manufacture, chemicals, seawater
evaluation of possible areas for               The spuds penetrated easily to a depth of         desalination, non-ferrous metal smelting,
improvement in all subsequent dredgers         ten metres and almost disappeared.                cereal storage and processing, industrial
of this type, the first IHC 8527MP® was        The discharge pipeline is limited to four         accommodation, modern material
delivered to the G&H Tianjin Shunhang          kilometres, which is well below the               handling, tourism, real estate etc. [3]
Shipping Co. This company was                  design capability of the pumping
established in 2001 and is a member of         installation. In this area, the smallest puff     The overall objective of the CFD dredging
the huge Ganghai Group, currently one of       of wind generates high swell,                     operation is to add a new 60-square
the most successful private ship owners        considerably restricting the operational          kilometre area for the development of
in Chinese domestic transport.                 window.                                           recycling and circular industries, including
With 11 bulk carriers, the firm is active in   The IHC 8527MP® has proved to be                  steel and chemical plants, auto parts

                                                                            4	 	 he GANHAI JUN 516 was built in a dry dock and her launch proved
                                                                               the success of ‘new building in cooperation’

                                                                            5 The GANGHAI JUN 526 connected to her 16-kilometre discharge
                                                                              pipeline – with no booster station – near Cao Fei Dian

                                                                            6 The ingenious spud-tilting system considerably enhances mobilisation

                                                                            7 A Chinese crew member contemplates the IHC 8527MP®’s power and
                                                                              her contribution to the future

  4                                                                           5
                                                                      32    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
manufacturing, modern ‘green’                  facilitates the mobilisation of the ship         Chinese market and effectively contribute
agriculture and many other activities.         (figure 6). His general impression of the        to the country’s future (figure 7). Within
At CFD, there are many CSDs of all makes       dredger is that everything is exactly            two years, six other IHC 8527MP®s will
and sizes in operation, and the GANGHAI        where it is needed. In the meantime, the         join the club!
JUN 526 has now taken over as the fleet’s      Chinese operators of G&H Shunhang can
blockbuster.                                   make the most of the CSDs right out of           References
                                               the blocks – they have been trained in the       [1] Ports and Dredging 170 pages 32-37.
The IHC 8527MP® can now show her               8527 simulator at IHC Merwede’s RIOs in          IHC Merwede, Sliedrecht, 2008.
mettle, being deployed more or less in         Guanghzou and Tianjin.                           [2] Ports and Dredging 174 pages 26-31.
accordance with the design                                                                      IHC Merwede, Sliedrecht, 2010.
requirements. She is sucking up silty          Conclusion                                       [3] Promoted Industry Guidebook of Caofeidian
and claylike sand from a depth of about        The performance of both IHC 8527MP®              New Area, Tangshan, China.
22 metres, and is connected to a               CSDs justifies the conclusion that the
16-kilometre discharge pipeline, which is      cooperation between IHC Merwede and
actually 33 per cent above the design          its Chinese partners results in versatile,
value (figure 5). Even at this distance, she   high-quality dredgers which fully comply
delivers about 950 cubic metres of dry         with the specific requirements of the
solids per hour. Ports and Dredging spoke
to Alex Lanser, IHC Merwede’s Guarantee
                                                                            Principal	features	IHC	8527MP®
Dredge Master, who attended the
commissioning works and operated the                    Length overall, spuds tilted, approx. 116.10m
dredger during the early stages of the                                    Length over pontoon Approx. 83m
project. He praised the vessel’s
                                                                       Breadth over pontoon Approx. 18m
performance, drawing attention to the
ease of operation and pointing out how                 Average draught at 100% deadweight Approx. 3.50m
all the components and power                                                   Dredging depth 5.00-27.00m
distribution work together harmoniously
                                                                Inside diameter suction pipe 850mm
to optimise operations. She performed so
well during the sea trials that the                           Inside diameter discharge pipe 850mm
customer – who was anxious to get on                                Power submerged pump 2,000kW
with the actual project – decided to
                                                                      Power onboard pump(s) 2x 3,700kW
accept the vessel after limiting the
planned eight-hour endurance test to                         Cutter power at approx. 30 rpm 1,100kW
only four hours. Alex Lanser is particularly                              Total installed power 13,671kW
enthusiastic about the ingenious spud
                                                                              Accommodation 25 people
tilting system, which considerably

  6                                                                           7
                                                                     33     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    In	close	collaboration...				
    Over	20	years’	experience	with	SCADA

                              34   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
    1	 	 hardware and software upgrade offers the
       opportunity to include the automation
       functionality of new ships like the ARTEVELDE
       in older vessels

    2	 	 EME’s ANTIGOON was the first TSHD,
       controlled by a SCADA system

                                                        onboard control systems. It was desirable
                                                        to input not only the dredging process
                                                        into the PLCs, but also the diesel engines
                                                        and main machinery. The average I/O
                                                        number on an ANTIGOON-type vessel
                                                        rose to about 2,300. On top of that,
                                                        analogue inputs and outputs were
                                                        included in the flood of signals. DEME
                                                        took the bold step of using them for
                                                        measurement and presentation, as well
                                                        as for control loops. So all the relevant
                                                        vessel and process data was available in
                                                        the PLC. That meant there was scope to
                                                        eliminate a large number of control
2                                                       components and indicator instruments.

    History                                             In those days, the SCADA system used a
    In 1988, the Belgian contractor DEME                separate card that was inserted into a PC
    (Dredging, Environmental & Marine                   slot. The card was an advanced PC itself,
    Engineering) took a significant step                with excellent graphic performance.
    forward by installing the first supervisory,        It was relatively easy to programme for
    control and data acquisition (SCADA)                the presentation of symbols, lines and
    system on the trailing suction hopper               dynamic values on a single dedicated
    dredger (TSHD) ANTIGOON (figure 2).                 colour video monitor display (15 inches at
    Until then, programmable logic                      the time). All that was left was to
    controllers (PLCs) had been used                    establish a data highway connection
    exclusively to control the extensive                between the PLC and the PC, and to
    hydraulic installations on TSHDs, replacing         arrange the PLC signals and status data so
    the proven relay-and-diode technology.              that the SCADA could understand them.
    The capacity of the systems was in the              IHC Systems had already acquired
    300+ digital I/O range. Conventional                experience with these systems over a
    components were used for control and                number of years in another specialist
    presentation. They included control                 field: electrically driven, floating mining
    levers, knobs and push button/signal                wheel dredgers incorporated in a fully
    lamp combinations, the latter in mimic              integrated plant and process automation
    diagrams mirroring the physical                     concept.
    arrangement of the dredge installation,
    with its range of pumps, sluice valves,             Acting in close collaboration once again,
    bottom doors etc. (figure 3).                       the buyer and builder developed model
                                                        screen page formats, including a list of
    With the introduction of SCADA systems,             conventions for displaying several
    personal computers were integrated into             symbols and how they appear and react
    the vessel’s control circuit. In those days,        on the screen. In fact, all new DEME
    many people thought this approach was               vessels in the years that followed – and a
    adventurous. However, DEME’s technical              number of retrofitted older vessels (about
    department – in close collaboration with            20 TSHDs and CSDs) – stuck to these basic
    IHC Systems – had carefully examined the            conventions, with some updates.
    merits of special rugged marine-tailored
    PCs, and concluded that the solution was            Developments
    safe and reliable. Moving further down              The visible result on the ANTIGOON was a
    this road meant greater integration of the          drastic reduction in the number of cables,

                   35    IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
                                                                                              3	 	 efore the ANTIGOON, discrete control
                                                                                                 components arranged in mimics were usual on
                                                                                                 board TSHDs

                                                                                              4 SCADA allowed the introduction of keyboard/
                                                                                                trackball control

                                                                                              5 A pipe operator’s intuition cannot function
                                                                                                without control levers for the suction pipe

                                                                                              6 The simplicity and comfort of BRABO’s one-man
                                                                                                operated bridge

                                                                                              7	 	 he operational life of three vessels was
  3                                              5                                               extended with the latest DEME upgrade: the
                                                                                                 UILENSPIEGEL... (courtesy DEME)

                                                                                              8 The LANGE WAPPER...

                                                                                              9 and the NILE RIVER

  4                                             6

control and indicator components.              General Electric. At about the same time,      paved the way for the benefits of one-
The former separate processors for the         the dedicated Data Highway between PCs         man operated bridges (figure 6) on the
draught and loading monitor, the suction       and PLCs was replaced by faster ethernet-      DEME-owned vessels MARIEKE,
tube position monitor and production           like communications. This intervention         REYNAERT, ARTEVELDE, BRABO and
measurement (DLM, STPM, PRM) were              did not alter functionality as such, but it    BREYDEL, as well as on the Royal Boskalis
all incorporated in the PLC/SCADA              did open up new perspectives for               CRESTWAY and SHOREWAY [1, 2], which
combination. Valve positions, pump             redundancy and switchable SCADA                have the same design. Even then, it
status, suction pipe positions and draught     viewer video screens, and the introduction     proved possible to reduce the number of
were presented on the video screens,           of glass fibre communications.                 screens by adapting the presentation
which still retained some of the old           So the move enhanced safety, versatility       conventions in response to new insights
mimics in those days. Even so, the             and electromagnetic compatibility (EMC).       about human ability to read and interpret
fundamental step forward had been              However, in addition to the keyboards          data, and by overlaying video pages.
taken. Instead of a host of push buttons       and trackballs, a relatively large number      In short, the developments described
and signal lamps, dedicated keyboard/          of discrete control components remained        here have made a major contribution to
track ball combinations controlled the         necessary to safeguard ease of operation.      the compactness, safety and ease of
relevant installations (figure 4). The                                                        operation of DEME’s TSHDs – and the
development also encouraged more               The third step led to another                  crews are happy with the innovations,
breakthroughs: extended calibration and        fundamental change. Large 19” or even          too.
diagnosis screen pages, considerably           23” touch screens required a new
enhancing the availability and                 approach to the interactive presentation       Trilogy	in	SCADA
maintenance of the vessel. This is             of colours, symbols and pop-up functions.      It is common knowledge that personal
because these pages provided a clear           So DEME and IHC Systems focussed               computers last between three and five
remote picture of the status of sensors,       intensely on the conventions. They came        years, and everybody regularly changes
cables, solenoids, electric motors, starting   up with a successful solution that made it     their PCs – only to discover that old
conditions and peripheral devices. The         possible to minimise the number of             programmes won’t run on newer, faster
SCADA systems even made it possible for        components leaving only those ones,            and more sophisticated machines and
a licensed operator with keyword access        required by operator intuition – such as       new Windows platforms. This means that
to the system to override malfunction          suction pipe winch control levers              the purchase of a new PC always involves
apparatus.                                     (figure 5) – and by regulatory bodies.         the purchase of additional, up-to-date
                                                                                              software packages. So it’s not difficult to
The second development was the                 These three steps – in conjunction with        imagine how Jan Lefever, the head of
replacement of the hard SCADA card, first      new insights at the DEME technical             DEME’s B&E department (automation
with the IC2000 package and then with          department and breakthroughs in suction        and electrical installations) felt on the day
the Cimplicity soft SCADA platform from        pipe handling and pump automation –            he discovered that the SCADA systems on

                                                                     36   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

  7                                                                                            9

the TSHDs UILENSPIEGEL, LANGE                 marine-type rugged PCs and ethernet            considerably by the quality of the solution
WAPPER and NILE RIVER had been                cables, splitters, KVM switches and similar    chosen in the past. In this case, the
operating reliably and without                equipment on the bridge.                       stability and durability of the rugged PCs
interruption for ten years! Realising how                                                    adapted for use at sea outperform the
fortunate he had been, he decided not to      The process is in full swing and, by the       laws of computing at least two or three
push his luck and called IHC Systems.         time you are reading this article, the         times over. There are also other benefits.
                                              projects will be reaching the completion       The strong relationships with original
Working in close collaboration once           stage, providing DEME once again with          designers – such as IHC Systems – mean
again, the two companies decided to           the prospect of many years of reliable         that vessel functionality can be upgraded
replace the SCADA systems for the three       control and operations from the young          in combination with the modernisation of
dredgers with the latest versions, without    sand-devouring vessels.                        other vessels in the fleet, in a single
changing the general control philosophy.                                                     operation and at relatively low cost
This meant that the PLC control system        The	future                                     (figure 1). This was the road taken by
and programming weren’t altered, except       Many people in the maritime world fail to      DEME’s Jan Lefever. The three vessels’
for a number of updates that IHC Systems      realise that using personal computers for      control and automation systems are
and DEME had developed in the                 vital functions on seagoing vessels            tailored to meet the operational
meantime for other ships. In line with        involves the laws of Moore (hardware           requirements of the present and the
everybody’s experience, the older             and software capacity doubles about            future and Jan can look forward to
Windows and SCADA platforms on board          every 1½ years), Microsoft and Intel           another trouble-free decade.
failed to run on the new computers and        (why use the technology of today if we
support was no longer available. New          stock your retailer with tomorrow’s?).         References
software platforms were the only way          The blunt implication of these ‘laws’ is       [1] ‘One man-operated bridge: how dedication
out. This implied rearranging the PLC/PC      that ship owners are best advised to           succeeded in starting a new era in dredging’.
data communication format and                 make plans for replacing this equipment        Ports and Dredging 167, pages 14-21. IHC Holland,
redrawing the screen pages. At first sight,   as routinely as cylinder linings in diesel     Sliedrecht, 2007. (on MARIEKE and REYNAERT).
this looks like a major time-consuming        engines. As it turns out, the desired          [2] ‘Experiences with another PALLIETER-class
job. In practice, the IHC Systems             modern approach on the bridge and              TSHD’. Ports and Dredging 169, pages 30-35.
specialists’ skills and the facilities and    comfortable control have a price.              IHC Merwede, Sliedrecht, 2008. (on BRABO).
libraries of the newer systems provide        Simply replacing old computers with new
extensive support for modifications of        hardware is not enough.
this kind. In addition, no major hardware
changes are required and nearly all the       However, the UILENSPIEGEL, LANGE
cabling can be maintained. Hardware           WAPPER and NILE RIVER (figures 7-9)
alterations mainly involve placing new        show that the pain can be mitigated

                                                                    37   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
On	order
Yard number / name         Specifications              Country

CO 1254 WILLEM VAN ORANJE  12,000m3                    The Netherlands 1
CO 1256 ISANDLWANA         4,200m3                     South Africa
CO 1257 VICTOR HORTA       5,000m3                     Belgium
CO 1259                    12,000m3                    China
CO 1260                    12,000m3                    China
CO 1263 CONGO RIVER        30,000m3                    Belgium                            1
CO 1264 DCI DREDGE XIX     5,000m3                     India
CO 1265 DCI DREDGE XX      5,000m3                     India
CO 1267 BREUGHEL           11,650m3                    Belgium

02490                      IHC Beaver® 1200            Congo
02459                      IHC Beaver® 50              Latin America 3
02719                      IHC Beaver® 6518C           Latin America
09.842 GANGHAI JUN 536     IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.843 GANGHAI JUN 556     IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.869                     IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.870                     IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.873 HAN LONG            IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.874 XUAN LONG           IHC 8527MP®                 China
09.900 YI LONG             IHC 7025MP®                 China                              2
09.901 FENG LONG           IHC 7025MP® wheel           China
02700                      IHC Beaver® 5014C           India
02742                      IHC Beaver® 600             Paraguay
02457                      IHC Beaver® 1200            Paraguay

02730                         11,787kW          Panama
02732 ZHONG GUO SHUI DIAN J08 13,000kW          China 2
02733 ZHONG GUO SHUI DIAN J09 13,000kW          China 2

CO1261 ATHENA               24,000kW                   The Netherlands
CO1268 AMBIORIX             26,100kW                   Belgium

SPLIT	HOPPER	BARGE	        	                          	                                   3
09.893 CORNELIS LELY       2,800m Split hopper barge The Netherlands

09.894 PIETER CALAND       2,800m3 Split hopper barge The Netherlands


                                                  38     IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010
Recently	delivered
Yard number / name                    Specifications                   Country

TRAILING	SUCTION	HOPPER	DREDGER	                                       	 	
CO 1255 ARTEVELDE          5,600m3                                     Belgium
BN 718 GATEWAY             12,000m3                                    The Netherlands 4

CUTTER	SUCTION	DREDGER	AND	WHEEL	DREDGER	                              	 	
02458                      IHC Beaver® 50                              Nigeria 3
02478                      IHC Beaver® 6518                            Emirates
02710                      IHC Beaver® 1200                            Nigeria
02711 JAMJAM-4             IHC Beaver® 1200                            Bangladesh
02712                      IHC Beaver® 1200                            Pakistan
02713                      IHC Beaver® 1200                            Bangladesh
02756                      IHC Beaver® 1200                            Bangladesh
09.896                     IHC 7025MP®                                 China
09.840 GANGHAI JUN 516     IHC 8527MP®                                 China
09.841 GANGHAI JUN 526     IHC 8527MP®                                 China

CUTTER	SUCTION	DREDGER	AND	WHEEL	DREDGER	–	CUSTOM-BUILT		 	                                	
02482 AL SAKAB             16,500kW             Saudi Arabia

BOOSTER	STATION	                      	                                	
02706                                 Booster 1686kW                   Germany

11046                                 DMC 850                          Bangladesh
11047                                 DMC 850                          Bangladesh

SPLIT	HOPPER	BARGE	                   	                          	
09.891 JAN BLANKEN                    2,800m3 Split hopper barge The Netherlands
09.892 JAN LEEGHWATER                 2,800m3 Split hopper barge The Netherlands

                 39   IHC Merwede | Ports and Dredging | Summer 2010

To top