One of Intermarine’s heavy lift vessels recently discharged at the port of Guanta huge columns for the mammoth refinery complex under construction in Jose, Venezuela. The shipment consisted of numerous heavy lift and oversize pieces including a super heavy lift vacuum column weighing 982 metric tons and measuring more than 15 meters in diameter.
The longest piece was the crude column with more than 57 meters in length and a weight of 367 tons. A specialized heavy-lift ro-ro vessel was specifically selected for this shipment. Literally months of engineering work was required to determine the support, seafastening, and handling requirements. In all, ninety-five tons of steel was used to fabricate the grillages on which the units rested. The ro-ro loading of the vacuum column required 40 axle lines of self-propelled modular trailers (SPMTs).
Once in Venezuela, the vacuum column required 48 axle lines of SPMTs to roll it directly onto the barge Sophie J, a 300’ x 100’ offshore deck barge operated by an Intermarine affiliate. The pieces were manufactured and loaded at Changwon, Korea.