Terex Port Solutions (TPS) is expanding its presence on the Mississippi River by supplying two Terex® Gottwald Model 8 floating cranes to St. James Stevedoring Partners (SJS), L.L.C., based in Convent, Louisiana, USA, near New Orleans. These two cargo-handling machines will be configured as four-rope G HPK 8400 B crane variants for professional bulk handling. From this summer on, SJS will be operating a total of ten Terex Gottwald floating cranes, including four G HPK 8400 B units, making it the world’s largest operator of floating cranes from TPS.
Terex Gottwald floating cranes for midstream operation …
The G HPK 8400 B is the most powerful Terex Gottwald floating crane with a maximum lifting capacity of 100 t and a 63‑t grab curve, which can handle as much as 1,850 t of bulk materials per hour depending on local conditions. The two new cranes will increase SJS’s handling capacity in transhipping ores, coal, grain and fertilizers from ocean-going vessels to inland water vessels midstream.
… and floating dock use where water levels fluctuate greatly
As well as operating midstream, these cranes will be used in conjunction with SJS’s docksite concept, which was designed as an alternative to transhipping ocean-going vessels to barges. This innovative concept involves using a floating dock equipped with a full infrastructure, including hoppers and conveyor systems, close to the river bank. The system compensates for changes in water level and allows bulk materials to be unloaded and conveyed to a land-based storage area even during considerable seasonal fluctuations in the water level. The Terex Gottwald floating cranes, each mounted on a barge, simply moor alongside the floating dock and unload the bulk material from the ocean-going vessel and transfer it to the hoppers.
Technology tailored to natural surroundings
According to Paul Morton, President of St. James Stevedoring Partners, L.L.C., it is also the natural site conditions on the Mississippi that contribute to the success of the Terex Gottwald floating cranes: “Construction work for new, permanent berthing facilities is excessively costly, which is why we were on the look-out for additional high-performance solutions to complement our midstream handling capabilities. Thanks to this dock site concept, we can now respond that much quicker and more flexibly when unloading ocean-going vessels.” As with midstream handling operations, Terex Gottwald floating cranes fit in ideally with the concept of temporary handling infrastructures consisting of a floating crane, floating dock and conveyor system: “This enables us to deploy both the cargo-handling cranes and our staff flexibly, which keeps overhead down and maximizes fleet utilization,” explains Paul Morton.
Continuous improvements in efficiency
Bob Histon, General Manager North America of TPS, underlines the key role played by this customer in the success story surrounding Terex Gottwald floating cranes and the latest order: “We developed the first floating crane, a Generation 4, HPK 330 EG, in 2004 together with SJS, which enabled us to supply them with a handling machine to their exact requirements and catered for all the site conditions. In the last nine years, Terex Gottwald floating crane technology in use on the Mississippi, which was derived from our mobile harbour cranes, has taken the lead in this field,” Histon continues. “Thanks to a program of continuous development of this crane type, its efficiency has steadily increased, which has helped our customers to take full advantage of the growing business potential of the Mississippi.”
Continued increases in demand for leading technology
Terex Port Solutions continues to show success with its customer-focused innovation strategy by providing cranes to meet the ever-changing needs of the customer. By continuously improving harbour crane technology and combining it with various bases, like barges for St. James Stevedoring, customers along the Mississippi River are seeing the benefits of efficiency and greater productivity with Terex Gottwald cranes. On average, two new cranes are supplied each year to the Mississippi, but their key benefits are also in demand in other locations: the two new cranes ordered by SJS will now raise the number of Terex Gottwald floating cranes in use on rivers and the open sea to a total of 29.