Driven by the growing dredging requirements at Indian ports and inland waterways, dredging has emerged as a distinct industry in itself over the past few years. In order to cater to the massive demand, several research and development (R&D) activities are being undertaken to improve the productivity of dredgers and thereby reduce operating costs. Dredger manufacturing companies are not only introducing innovative components for existing dredgers but are also developing new dredgers with advanced components.
The increased focus on dredging has resulted in rapid growth of the dredging equipment market. Domestic equipment needs are largely met by foreign suppliers. These players have set up subsidiaries in the country to meet the specific requirements of the market. Besides, some players have also set up workshops to provide after-sales services and technical assistance and meet the demand for components.
New and innovative dredging equipment solutions
Netherlands-based Royal IHC is the leading dredging equipment supplier in the country. Over the years, IHC has been undertaking R&D activities to improve the operational efficiency of its dredgers and dredging components. The company has introduced new designs for components such as cutter heads, spud carriers, spud guards and pivoting gearboxes. It has supplied dredgers and dredging equipment to a number of public and private ports and companies such as the Dredging Corporation of India, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited, the Inland Waterways Authority of India, the Gujarat Maritime Board, Dredging and Desiltation Company Private Limited, Jindal Steel Limited, Ocean Sparkle Limited, Navayuga Container Terminal Limited (erstwhile Krishnapatnam Port Company Limited), and Dharti Dredging and Infrastructure Limited.
IHC designs and builds a variety of standardised and custom-built cutter suction dredgers (CSDs). These dredgers are capable of dredging compacted soil types and materials, such as clay and rock, and are ideal for many dredging jobs, such as land reclamation and construction of new harbour basins and canals. The equipment used for cutter suction dredging are dredge pumps, cutter dredger excavation equipment, dredge line components, dredging control systems, training simulators, monitoring systems, artificial intelligence systems, the IHC Beaver® information system and automatic cutter control systems.
The IHC Beaver® 40 is equipped with state-of-the-art technology and provides optimal presentation of the swing width/cutter depth. The key features of the IHC Beaver® 40 CSD are that it requires low maintenance, ensures efficient power distribution with a single diesel engine, is equipped with environment-friendly solutions such as LED lighting and white iron-wear parts for the dredge pump, ensures safe operations using programmable logic controller-based controls and interlocks, and has the control cabin placed on dampers to improve comfort and reduce noise, among others. Further, additional equipment that can be installed with the IHC Beaver® 40 are spud carriages, anchor booms, swivel bends, non-return valves and vacuum-relieve valves, automation and positioning systems, and operator assist systems for online monitoring. The company also offers life-cycle support packages including training and technical support.
Further, IHC designs cutter heads and dredging wheels to suit different soil conditions. The IHC Lancelot® enables smooth cutting with minimal spillage in loose soil. It cuts the soil in thin layers, resulting in less spillage, blockage and vibrations, besides making it possible to dredge stiffer and harder soils.
Shijiazhuang Industrial Pump Factory Company Limited
Shijiazhuang Industrial Pump Factory Company Limited (SGB) is a China-based industrial pump manufacturing enterprise. SGB owns and offers 800 large and medium equipment and over 200 sophisticated equipment types such as direct-reading spectrometer, coordinates measuring machine and rapid typing machine. SGB is capable of material inspection, casting, welding, machining and assembling, besides undertaking performance test of pump units. The maximum weight of a work piece cast by SGB is about 12 tonnes, the maximum diameter of the work piece which can be machined by SGB is over 5 metres, and the maximum flow rate of the pump product is more than 120,000 cubic metres per hour. The company manufactures a wide variety of products such as slurry pumps, dredge pumps, multistage pumps, desulphurisation pumps, and pump parts.
SGB’s N Series anti-abrasion dredger pump is a single-stage, single-case, metal liner, horizontal pump. The key features of the pump are:
- Advanced hydraulic model, computer-aided design, high efficiency and excellent energy savings
- Strong flow capacity; it can pump gravel and high plastic clay lumps
- Stable running, less vibration and low noise
- High reliability and economic benefits
The way forward
In the coming years, dredging requirements are expected to rise further in light of the increased emphasis on deepening and widening of draught levels at ports and inland waterways. This, in turn, will drive the demand for dredging equipment in the future, auguring well for equipment suppliers. w
Based on a presentation by Jaco Kleijwegt, Area Sales Manager, India, Royal IHC; and John Fan, Manager, Director, International Trade Office in SGB Company, SGF Pumps, at a recent India Infrastructure conference