Author Topic: question about panama canals new locks  (Read 3302 times)

Offline clayton stephens

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question about panama canals new locks
« on: May 07, 2011, 10:09:05 PM »
i have a question reguarding the new lock chambers under construction at the panama canal. i've heard that ships up to 49 meters will be able to pass through them once they are compleated. but i know there are many ships such as bw's berge bonde that is 50 meters wide.
could it still pass through there safely with tug boats ascorting it or does the panama canal athority simple does'nt want them passing though there because of safety reasons? just curious, please reply if you know any info, thanks

Offline John Jones

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Re: question about panama canals new locks
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2011, 11:07:54 PM »
Clayton,

I understand that when the new third set of locks are opened in 2014 vessels of 426m LOA, 54m beam and 18m freshwater draught will be able to transit.

In terms of dry bulk trades this could promote the transit of US Gulf grain, US East Coast metallurgical coal, Brazilian ore and Colombian coal to Asia, while West Coast South American minerals will be eased on their way north to Europe and the US East Coast.

However the main increase in traffic is hoped to be with the box boats, the 6,000 - 7,000 TEU sector is expected to benefit especially. A replacement or raising of the Bridge of the Americas near the Pacific mouth of the canal would raise the top TEU figure by increasing the current air draught of 61 metres. Also the US East Coast ports would have to improve their infrastructure to handle the largest vessels able to transit the expanded canal, in particular increasing the low air draught of the Bayonne Bridge at the port of New York/New Jersey.

Best Regards
John J.

 

 

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Offline Captain Ted

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Re: question about panama canals new locks
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2011, 11:12:41 PM »
Depends how much money flows.
when Maersk got real big they pushed hard that 294m ships were allowed to pass
before the max was smaller. They tried also to increase the max draft which is 12.04m
in the Miraflores lock (to float them with more water in the locks over the bar, but abandonded that again)
with the new canal might be the same, I am not sure what the total max width
of the new locks are, but if it is more than 50,5m,,someone sure will try and push for it.

btw, the new locks will have no locomotives, the ships will enter with tugs.
some say it will slow down the process, some don,t. I believe it will be slower.
ACP, the canal authorities have a contracct with (to my knowledge) Le Harve and Antwerp
two ports which have locks with tugs, and sending there pilots to lern how to do that.
It is a toally different manuevering into a lock then for example going alongside.
Mainly of course, the tug can only pull/hold fwd/aft and not much pull/hold side ways
It requires skilled pilots and masters to do that time and again with minimal casualties.

brgds
capt ted
NOW!!!,,,if we could get rid of the sailors,,how safe shipping would be !!!!!!!!

Offline clayton stephens

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Re: question about panama canals new locks
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2011, 01:58:05 AM »
thanks for the info, i think the maxumim with of the new lock chambers is 54.86 meters (according to wikipedia) so i guess we'll have to wait until the locks open and see if a few shipping companies can try and get some 50 to 52 meter wide ships though them safely. there is another thing i'd like to say. i know that MSC has several large ships that are 51 meters in length, could they still fit though the new locks? i know those ships have bow thrusters but will they help very much? just thought i'd ask. thabks again

Offline Captain Ted

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Re: question about panama canals new locks
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2011, 01:33:51 PM »
did you mean 510m length?

bowthrusters are good for locks, special if it is done with one tug only. That tug is then
tied in the center lead aft. Then the vessel goes with dead slow ahead (sometimes also slow ahead and also depending how strong the tug is) then the tug goes half ahead, opposite than the ship. This lets virtually steer the ship into the locks with good rudder and reaction capabilities at a very controlled speed. The connection point between the ship and the tug
(center lead aft) acts virtually as a pivot point. Having in such a situation a bowthruster
is better than a 2ng tug fwd. The tug fwd as mentioned before can,t do much and it renders
close to useless that more one goes into the locks. I,d take anytime over a tug fwd into a lock a bowthruster instead.
Of course for the new PanCan , new tugs are builded too, more powerfull for the big ships to come so one can rest assured that the contracts between them and the ACP will be based
that vessel will have to use tug assistance fwd and aft already for the sake of "safety"
Sometimes it is,,sometimes it,s not. Depending a lot how good the pilots are aquainted with maneuvering into locks with tugs. Having the tugs is not always needed, but for one point it is,,something goes wrong, everyone, and the the media first, will shout why pilot/capt
did not use tugs, therefore most probably tugs will be mandatory in the new canal.
NOW!!!,,,if we could get rid of the sailors,,how safe shipping would be !!!!!!!!

Offline clayton stephens

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Re: question about panama canals new locks
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2011, 02:14:56 AM »
sorry about that, i ment to say 51 meters WIDE (or beam) not length, thanks for pointing that out, anyway thanks again for the info

 

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