UK Dredging orders water injection dredge

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Shoalbuster 2711 water injection dredge (WID) [Image: Damen Shipyards]

Associated British Ports subsidiary UK Dredging has placed an order with Damen Shipyards for a Shoalbuster 2711 water injection dredge (WID). Based on a proven design, the vessel nonetheless represents a unique and innovative approach to water injection dredging, enabling extreme efficiency and flexibility.

UK Dredging operates Britain’s largest dredging fleet. Amongst its vessels are a number of Damen dredges and workboats, including two Multi Cat plow vessels. The company’s scope is to undertake maintenance dredging in ABP’s ports. To do this, UK Dredging typically operates a number of hopper dredges.

A smaller water injection dredge will enable the company to extend the intervals in between hopper dredging operations and Damen has adapted the proven, standard design of the Shoalbuster 2711 specifically for this project. This has included optimizing the vessel’s hull to suit the role it will undertake. The vessel will also feature a highly efficient diesel-electric system that will facilitate a significant reduction in both fuel consumption and emissions.

In place of the usual submersible jets, the Shoalbuster 2711 WID will use a next generation, fully electric Damen E-DOP450 dredge pump. This, the largest in Damen’s dredge pump portfolio, has a 4,000 cubic meters per hour capacity, ensuring optimal efficiency and low operational costs.

The vessel will also be equipped with an hydraulically operated A-frame. When not in the use, the A-frame will tilt, enabling the plow to be stored on the vessel’s aft.

Use of the E-DOP and A-frame will contribute to the vessel’s multi-functionality. When not in use, the plow including pump, can be dismounted and stored on the quayside, leaving the vessel free to undertake other operations.

Water injection dredge contract signing
L to R: First row: Mike McCartain OBE (group director of safety, marine & engineering, Associated British Ports), Arnout Damen (CEO, Damen Shipyards Group), Back row: Frank de Lange (sales director, North, West & South Europe, Damen Global Support), Mark Pearson (general manager, UK Dredging), Jeroen van Woerkum (commercial manager, Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld), Koert van Houwelingen (project manager, Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld), Joppe Neijens (sales manager Dredging, Damen Global Support), Jos van Woerkum (managing director, Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld). [Photo: Damen Shipyards]

“We are very pleased to once more be working with UK Dredging,” said Joppe Neijens, Damen sales manager dredging. “This innovative project demonstrates the versatility of the standardized shipbuilding approach; even though the vessel is built in series it can be adapted to meet the needs of the customer. The Shoalbuster 2711 WID is an extremely versatile vessel with an operating profile that goes way beyond its primary function. It’s also a very efficient vessel that offers a leap forward in terms of sustainability and cost-effectiveness in operation – a good concept for now and for the future.”

“The contract award for this Damen Shoalbuster 2711 WID is an important milestone for UK Dredging,” said Mark Pearson, general manager, UK Dredging. “The introduction of the WID into our fleet will enable us to offer our clients a number of different dredging techniques optimized for the local conditions. The vessel’s highly efficient diesel-electric propulsion and power system will help to achieve a significant reduction in both fuel consumption and emissions that are important steps towards reducing UK Dredging’s carbon footprint.”

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