You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘dredging’ category.

The “enlargement” of the Panama Canal involved a lot of dredging in Panama, as well as in ports served by the Neopanamax ships:  deepening approaches, widening channels, and even eliminating islands in part or whole in Gatun Lake.  I put the ” ” there because it’s more accurate to say “creating a third set of locks,” two sets were built a century ago.  To illustrate click here;  in the fifth photo, Atlantic Polaris is in set 1, and Nord Snow Queen in set 2.   Try again, in the same post, the fourth photo from the end, Bow Summer is in the first set, and Ever Dynamic in the second.   The third set construction site was visible back in 2012 here in the fifth photo, on the hill beyond Water Phoenix.

To dredging then, on the Atlantic side, DEME is busy with a fleet

that includes D’Artagnan heading up the efforts, a cutterhead suction dredge that can work down to 114.’

A category I’d not seen before is a self-propelled hopper barge, such as Pagadder and

Sloeber, although the latter was behind a dock that obscured most of her.  On the photo above, see the split midships on the bow;  that’s how she bottom dumps, as a dump scow would.

Quibian I is Panama-flagged and working in Lake Gatun, which is really the dammed up Chagres River.


The tenders alongside include (far to near)  Diablo, Espada, and Diablo II.

Drill barge Barú, proudly christened in 2006,  is one of the dredge-related vessels operating near the Culebra Cut. Barú, named for a Panamanian volcano, seems an appropriate name for a vessel whose mission is to drill holes so that charges can be set.   Back in 2012, I got these photos of charges detonated after being set deep by Kraken, over in the Arthur Kill.

The tender above and below is Chame II.  She followed us toward Culebra Cut while she was on a run to load more explosives.

Over on the Pacific side, dredging is performed by Jan de Nul, a Luxembourgois dredging firm.   Filippo Brunelleschi ran day and night dredging the Pacific side approaches;  a trailing suction hopper dredge, she can operate down to 124 ‘!  To digress, I’m not sure which tugs were there off the stern and in front of Taboga.

Not surprisingly for a European firm, Jan de Nul (JDN)–like DEME–uses self-propelled split hopper scows.

The two here are Magellano 1800 above and Verrazzano 1800 below, both flagged Mauritius (Port Louis) like the JDN tug we saw here.

And finally, that’s Filippo B in the distance coming back in toward the Pacificside locks, passing Maggie M.  I’m not sure why Maggie M was anchored here.

All photos by Will Van Drop, who suggests these places to celebrate the green saint’s day.


Today’s photos and text by my friend Lew, whose annotations I adapted.

“Crews with lots of blue equipment have been dredging Old Saybrook North Cove off the CT River.  Though they’ve has been here since mid-November, this is about the first chance I got to take some pictures.  I was out for a late afternoon bicycle ride and had only my phone and “beater” pocket camera.”
Off Old Saybrook,  which tug?

Here’s dredge Michigan with Brian Nicholas and Paul Andrew….



“Though the sun doesn’t cooperate for those us shore-bound by an early haul-out this time of year, they take the loaded scows out to Long Island Sound where approx 1/2 mile offshore, dredge Delaware Bay (spudded down off the Knollwood section of Old Saybrook) transloads to a larger barge that

Atlantic Enterprise takes to the New Haven dumpsite.”

Many thanks to Lew for these photos, especially this good profile of Atlantic Enterprise.

And here’s something quite unrelated . . . want reclaimed barn lumber for the finest of projects, check here.

Finally . . . Atlantic Enterprise and I get close-up, and it’s appropriate that it should happen over by Bergen Point, where I had an encounter with Atlantic Salvor so many years ago.

When I heard VTS mention her on the VHF, I was hoping she was light or towing on the wire.  No matter, with zoom I was able to get acceptable photos for now.

Atlantic Salvor these days appears to be in Mobile, after having done some post-Maria clean-up in Puerto Rico.

Enterprise has been operating on a dredging project near the mouth of the Connecticut River.  More on that tomorrow.

After the turn, she heads north into Newark Bay to the Donjon homeport with Witte 4003.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who previously posted photos of this boat as Barents Sea here and here, and Enterprise here; in addition to many others.

For Jack Ronalds’ photo of Atlantic Enterprise at the Canso lock, click here.

This no-nonsense machine . . .

I can show you but tell you nothing about.  I don’t know.

Nearby,  Haskell was built  in 1936, but that’s all I know.

The photos above I took in Holland MI, and the rest  . . . in Sturgeon Bay, WI  Chas. Asher dates from 1967, and I know nothing about the one on shore.

Here’s that same “high and dry” tug seen in profile.

Spuds–now THAT is a name for a small tug, was launched from 1944.

Duluth appears to have a proud owner;  she came off the ways in 1954.

Here, Duluth moves a dump scow up to the bulkhead on the Sturgeon Bay Ship Canal, where her very wet dredge spoils will be offloaded.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.


Carl Sandburg said:  “The fog comes  . ..  on little cat feet.

It sits looking  . . . over harbor and city . . . on silent haunches

And then moves on.”


My unrehearsed version is :  “The old cat once . .  . patrolled the wharf
Now it sits over the sunlight . . . and sheds on the riverbanks
masking the distances.”

What I really mean is that taking photos on limited visibility day like yesterday benefits from heightened foreground details in comparison.
Jennifer Turecamo heads out to Gravesend Bay along with the USCG patrol vessel.

A tanker arrives with a name

that’s ironic on a few levels .  .

Meagan Ann hauls Witte 4002 out to dump and

Mary Alice returns Witte 4004 from HARS before Meagan Ann  returns.

And Barney Turecamo comes into port a bit while the barge is monitored by Jennifer.

To finish, here’s another shot of Combi Dock 1 arriving from China with lots of sea miles logged….

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

So here was 1 and in it I said I would answer a question in a few days and now a few weeks have passed.  The question pertained to the device mounted on the stern of vessel


Husky.  Congrats to Seth Tane, who guessed correctly.  Here’s what Xtian writes:  “It’s a plough.  In French we talk about “nivelage” [leveling], which means after dredging the bottom of the sea is like a field that has just passed a plow.  This tool cuts the bump to fill the gap.  It’s also used in the rivers where the “alluvium” or the mud stays in always same places because of the current and built like “bottom hill” there.  And it happens also in some harbour (like ferries’ harbour) as because the ferries always doing the same maneuver and raise the mud that still lay at the same place.

With the plough used at the right time, ebb tide for example, the mud is raised and leaves the harbour with tidal current.  In some places the plough is used to feed the hopper dredger –  when the dredger is too large, the plough is used to remove a “bottom hill” when they are close to the bank to give the mud at the place where the hopper dredge is working.   The plough is not only used with mud but also with sand or pebble.  Google with words : Dredge – Plough.


About Husky, the day I took this picture she was working closely with the dredge Rijndelta at the entrance of Maasvlakte harbor.   I add a picture of her below.”

More of Xtian’s photos follow, like this closeup of the captain of Smit Cheetah,




Fairplay 24 and 21,


Union 11 passing the Mammoet headquarters,


Smit Schelde,


SD Rebel,


Multratug 31, 


Osprey Fearless, 


Pieter (?) towing Matador 2,


and finally the recently completed Noordstroom.



Many thanks to Xtian for these photos of another watershed.

Sometimes getting something together for this blog depends on something I read.  Like this morning, I saw this article in the NYTimes headlines. I read as much as I can, stuff I disagree with as well as the other.  Anyhow, the photo with that article led me to pick up this photo I took from the plane a week or so ago.  Recognize it?  I has suspicions, but had to check it out.  Answer follows.


Here’s a closer up, which clinched it for me.


Try a little more context beyond the airport?


And completely unrelated . . . how is the photo below–Island A–different from


say .  . Island B, below?


And while you’re still puzzling though the answer to my second question, the one on differences, how about this as the location for the airplane photos.  They all three show different portions of the Conch Republic.

The which Republic?

This Conch Republic;  scroll through here and see the flag.  The main feature in photos 1 and 2 is the airport on Boca Chica Key.  But that secondary feature there . . . submarine pits!!  Or canals for navy housing?


Here’s identification for the third airplane photo . . . Saddlebunch Keys all the way to the west end of the Seven Mile Bridge.


Now for the question about differences between the two islands . . .  the lower photo is granite/granite-gneiss bedrock protruding above the water of the St. Lawrence River.  The upper island is the creation of Richart Sowa.  It floats on 250,000 plastic bottles. Yes, it floats!  Here and here are sites devoted to Sowa’s creation.

Do you remember the sixth boro’s summer of the floating island?  And the summer of the water pod?  And the water dome?

What new islands with surprising features lie in the future?  Get a window seat on your new flight and enjoy the view.

All photos here by Will Van Dorp.


Let me pick up here, a closer up of the mystery tug Alnair from yesterday’s post.  I have no further info, but one reader–Thanks, L–wrote to suggest that Alnair looks like a YTB.  I’d thought so, too, but in Cuba?


So consider this one, not my photo, but if you click on the photo and do a search for YTB, you’ll find that until May 2006, this “Cuban” tug was known as Apalachicola YTB 767.  So could Alnair be Chesaning YTB 769, for example?


Al Mendares looks to be a small tanker named for the river that flows through Havana.




And here from the seawall  . . . MSC Opera, which as of this writing is across the Yucatan Strait in Mexico.


The red vessel is Vega, a trailing suction hopper dredger.


And finally, this ungainly vessel is a ferry.


All photos by Will Van Dorp.

For more on YTBs, click here.


I’m back and–before catching up on my time off the internet–I need to pack the robots back into Cosmoline and close out some January 2016 dredging business . . . here’s my most recent Professional Mariner article.  And below are some additional photos of the research done in June 2015.

This is what 1100 + cubic meters of misplaced river bottom looks like after it’s sucked up and being transported to another location where scour demands it be added.


And that red boat in the distance is the client, at least the


verifier for the client.


Once in the designated discharge site, hydraulic ram start to press the


hulls apart, and


all that bottom finds itself in gravity’s grip and


tumbles out.


Now only some water remains as the vessel–Ocean Traverse Nord–returns to the worksite and


lowers the arm to suction up another 1100+ cubic meters




of gallivanting silt piles, here shown in patches of green.  Notice the darker rectangle, representing the location of the dredger hull.



All photos by Will Van Dorp.

For video, click here and start at 13:51.

Thanks again to Barrel for sending another dredge photo.  These photos send me looking for background.  So here is what I can figure.

0abdrgDavidson Sasebo JapanNov1951

Davison (records say Davidson, but I’ll go by what I see in the photo above) was built by Dravo in Wilmington DE in 1945.  She was dispatched to Korea in 1951 because of the extreme tides in Inchonaverage range is 29 and extreme range is 36 feet.

Again thanks, Barrel.

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