New megacutter: A design from our own drawing board
After many years Boskalis is once again building a new megacutter. Kees Kamp, who is responsible for this project, expects the cutter suction dredger to leave the yard in the course of 2017. For him and his team that will mark the end of a period of many years of thinking, feasibility studies, design, engineering and supervising construction.
“In-house preparation of the design for this cutter and its subsequent development together with IHC enables the expertise we have at Boskalis to be used and safeguarded to the full. During the design process the cooperation between the various corporate staff departments, experienced crew members and the yard resulted in the best possible design for the ship,” said Kamp. “The design is based on eighty per cent of the works out there in the market. The ship will include a number of technical details that will put Boskalis a step ahead of the competition.”
Boskalis will use this EUR 170 million investment to replace the old cutter Ursa, which was sold last year. At 152 meters long and 28 meters wide the new vessel is bigger than the Ursa. The overall equipment is also bigger and heavier; weighing 1,950 tonnes, the ladder construction supporting the cutter head is particularly impressive. “To improve the trim of the ship the cutter ladder has been placed at the stern of the ship instead of in the sailing direction,” Kamp explained. “The stern of the ship is wider than the fore and this tapered shape also contributes to a better trim.”
“The new megacutter enables us to perform dredging works in water depths of up to 35 meters, but also at a minimal dredging depth of 6 meters. That means the vessel can also be deployed to dredge shore approaches for pipelines,” said Kamp. Cutters of two different heights can be used, providing the capability to cut very hard soil. The cutter capacity is between 4,200 and 7,000 kW, the pump capacity equals 3 x 5,200 kW.
Unusually the cutter ladder has only one turning point, meaning that it is not adjustable in height. This Contributes to crew safety. The ladder lifting winches have been situated below deck to gain space, reducing the number of cables on deck. An added advantage is that there is less noise nuisance for the crew during dredging. The ship is equipped with anchor booms so that it can move the anchors for the side winches on its own, without the need for assistance from multicats. The Boskalis safety standards have been applied during the design (EQP-501) and the SHE-Q department will advise the yard on applying the Boskalis NINA safety standard during detail engineering and construction.
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