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Inflatable lifting for extension of a ship

Floats for the extension of Peter Pan

Lifting and balancing system for a ship during extension work by adding a section

1. Problematic
As part of the extension of the transport vessel "Peter Pan", the company German Dry Docks consulted us for, within 2 months, design, manufacture, deliver and assemble an inflatable lifting and balancing system with a capacity of 950 tons to facilitate port handling.
German Dry Docks was commissioned to enlarge an existing ferry. For this, the ship is cut in half and an extension section is placed between the bow and the stern.
The proposed inflatable lifting system provides temporary buoyancy and balance for the aft portion of the vessel.


2 Design and Engineering
In cooperation with German Dry Docks, we designed inflatable buoyancy systems and calculated the capacity of lifting cushions.
During engineering, we developed, examined and considered:

  • the temporary frame allowing the installation of the system
  • The necessary buoyancy
  • balancing
  • maximum inclinations
  • the forces exerted at the fixing points
  • the voltages put into play in the pressure tubes

In the end, the design process resulted in:

  • Floats Type 1: 8 floats with a diameter of 2 meters and a length of 34 meters. These floats each have a buoyancy of 100 tons!
  • Floats Type 2: 8 strands with a diameter of 2.4 meters and a length of 4.5 meters.

3 Implementation
Under our supervision and with the help of Buitink Technology, the inflatable floats are mounted under the ship. The air supply and distribution devices are also installed and connected, after which the floating bodies are filled with air at the right pressure.


4 Process
The stern remained steady for 10 days, mainly floating on the inflatable systems we provided.
During this time, the systems were monitored by Buitink Technology 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We ensured that the cushions were always at the correct pressure during the welding operation of the ship's extension.

More information

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