Diegem, in the Flemish periphery around Brussels, and on the Brussels – Antwerp axis, is near the national airport of Zaventem. It goes without saying that, in an area of such national and international economic importance, space is scarce and…Read more
Mimar Sinan and the Tiger
For this first stage, several vessels have been converted. Tom: “One of the reasons for this is that we are working on a very small surface area. For instance, on the backhoe dredger Mimar Sinan we installed a special gripper arm to be able to reach very far and deep and remove the shore protection without having to come too close to the shore ourselves.”
Particular attention was paid to two nature reserves surrounding the work area. Both the Mimar Sinan and the Tiger were equipped with special, closed eco-friendly grippers for dredging polluted sediments. Such a gripper, installed at the outer end of a crane, prevents dredged polluted sediments from leaking and falling back into the sea. Jan van Vijven, captain of the Tiger, a multipurpose vessel that has already been converted for several specific projects in the past, gives us a word of explanation: “For us, working with such an eco-friendly gripper was a new experience.
"All works were successfully executed.We were given the order to deliver a flat seabed and cause as little turbidity in the water as possible. So, I had to make sure the vessel wouldn’t swing back and forth too much and that the crane team operated carefully.”
Once the layer of polluted sediments had been removed, it was up to the Francis Beaufort to dredge 400,000 m³ of seabed. Tom Van Slambrouck: “This vessel was also adjusted, among others, by extending the suction pipe. We were allowed to release the dredged sediments into sea but solely within a predefined area in Monegasque waters. We had to make sure the material wouldn’t flow beyond the country’s borders or into the nature reserves next to our work area.” To this end, the dredge pipe of the trailing suction hopper dredger Francis Beaufort was adjusted to enable the same dredge pipe to pump the dredged materials back into sea in a controlled way, down to a depth of 75 metres.