South Africa's Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) has contracted IHC Merwede to design, construct and deliver a trailing suction hopper dredger (TSHD).
IHC Merwede won the contract after successful submission into an open tender process for the TSHD, which is claimed to be the largest dredging vessel of its kind in the country.
The new TSHD will be nearly 101.5m long, 7.5m deep and have a 5,500m³ capacity Hopper at its highest overflow level and 900mm inside diameter of trailing suction pipe.
Additional features include the 30m dredging depth, a total installed power of approximately 6,200kW, trial speed of 11.9k and a capacity to carry 26 people.
TNPA's existing fleet of IHC Merwede-built vessels includes the 4,200m³ TSHD ISANDLWANA that was ordered in 2008 and the grab hopper dredger ITALENI which was ordered in 2013.
As part of the contract, IHC Merwede will also implement a social development plan that includes appropriate transfer of some of the company's advanced technology and knowledge base.
The plan is aimed at improving local industry in South Africa and to aid the development of the workforce's skills within the region.
TNPA is one of the five operating divisions of Transnet SOC and manages eight commercial ports along the country's 2,954km coastline in a landlord capacity.
Being responsible for the safe, effective and efficient economic functioning of the South African national port system, TNPA's two main service categories are the provision of port infrastructure and of maritime services, such as dredging and marine operations.
Image: IHC Merwede will build the 5,500m³ TSHD for TNPA. Photo: courtesy of IHC Merwede B.V.