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Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  27 Oct 2008

MARITIME: Systems for Port Infrastructure


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TRELLEBORG Marine Systems (incorporating Fentek), represented locally by rubber specialist Truco is now able through its marine division Table Bay Rubber Company to manufacture and supply quick release hooks and bollards, designed and built to suit most docks, jetties and wharves.

This is as a result of Trelleborg acquiring mooring specialists Harbour & Marine Engineering (now Trelleborg Harbour Marine), who can offer standard mooring equipment through to fully-integrated mooring and monitoring system designs.

Mooring equipment has in the past been low on the priority list for design review; however, with the increasing focus on safety and efficiency, attention to documenting operations and the more recent availability of robust monitoring systems for this unique marine environment, this is changing. Fully integrated mooring system are custom engineered, with long lead purchases requiring independent testing and an ISO 9001 accredited approach to design and manufacture.

The quick release hook is the foundation of any hazardous jetty mooring system. The basic design has been continually updated over the last 40 years and Trelleborg Harbour Marine has a significant track record with over 2 200 hooks having been supplied to international projects over the last five years.

Benefits inherent in these hooks include positive locking and resetting, no sparking or impact to jetty, full load and release testing, optimised foundation design, superior environmental exposure protection, minimum rope chafe and superior capstan rope handling.

Used in all major oil and gas marine facilities worldwide, quick release hooks facilitate the release of a vessel without the need to reduce tension in each mooring line. Hooks can be released manually as standard, or by optional remote release, from zero load up to the Safe Working Load capacity of each hook.

Remote release systems for quick hooks are installed for two reasons: safety and productivity. The main purpose of the mechanism is to release the mooring lines, which may be under tension, in a safe and controlled manner and without the need for personnel to be on the jetty. The remote release system incorporates safety interlocks and control measures to prevent accidental, inadvertent or uncontrolled release. This system has no obtrusive components and is contained inside the hook structure to prevent damage. Most manufacturers offer manual release at the hook using a removable lever as a minimum feature.

Release mechanisms are either electric or electro-hydraulic in operation. Hydraulic-based remote release systems require a separate power unit, hydraulic lines and an oil reservoir to allow operation and are typically high maintenance systems. There has been a strong swing toward electric-based systems that offer the same level of functionality in terms of release control and safety in a more cost effective, maintenance friendly package.

In addition to the mooring systems, Trelleborg Harbour Marine has developed a Docking Aid System (DAS) to assist in manoeuvring the vessel towards the jetty during the last 200m of approach. Called SmartDock, the docking system measures vessel distance, angle and speed of approach using lasers mounted on the jetty. The data is displayed and logged in the marine monitoring PC in the control room and typically also made available to the Pilot on a jetty mounted large display board and / or over telemetry to a handheld monitor.

Although experience is an essential ingredient for effective mooring management, it cannot be completely relied upon at all times and may be limited, particularly at Greenfield marine facilities. In addition, as vessel size increases, berthing dynamics will also change and a DAS provides the data necessary to enable personnel to clearly follow agreed procedures, for example keeping vessel docking speed below the agreed site limit. A typical DAS consists of two laser sensors, a controller, central PC with software and remote display devices such as display devices such as the display board, for each berth. As with all the jetty monitoring systems, multiple berths can be interfaced to a single control point for integrated operator display, logging and reporting. In the event of a docking incident, a history of the final approach to the jetty and impact with fenders can be replayed on the docking software. Data is logged at one-second intervals and a series of graphs and reports printed for analysis and training purposes.

Integrated monitoring systems for larger oil and especially gas jetties typically incorporate environmental sensors as the final input to a PC-base central marine monitoring facility. All monitoring and status data is brought together at the one point to allow the jetty operator to make the most informed decision possible and maintain a safe and efficient terminal.

Trelleborg Harbour Marine has also recently expanded its bollard range offerings, which include: the tee bollard, horn bollard and kidney bollard.

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