September launch of Ursa dredger under construction for the route through the Vistula Spit

Ursa dredger

A specialised vessel under construction for the new waterway through the Vistula Spit will be launched in mid-September. The launching of the dredger will take place at the Finnish shipyard where the vessel is being made, the Maritime Office in Gdynia told the Polish Press Agency.

As found out, the name planned for the dredger is Ursa.

As the spokeswoman of the Maritime Office in Gdynia Magdalena Kierzkowska reminded, the new waterway through the Vistula Spit is being built in several stages.

On 17 September last year, the Vistula Spit saw the commissioning of the Navigation Channel along with the associated infrastructure and an island in the Vistula Lagoon.

The second stage, namely the Elbląg riverbank enclosure, is currently more than 90 per cent advanced, with the rotary bridge in Nowakowo, commissioned at the beginning of July this year, being an important element. All work under this part of the investment will be completed by the end of 2023. The third stage has been completed, i.e., the dredging of the waterway in the Vistula Lagoon and the construction of navigation markings.

The dredger is being built for the new waterway. The new building contract was signed in February 2022, providing for the dredger’s design, construction, equipment and delivery. The contract value is PLN 116.5 million.

“The keel was laid last October [25.10.2022 – ed.], and the dredger will be launched in Finland in the second half of September. The construction advancement is currently at about 70 per cent. The vessel should be ready by the end of the first quarter of 2024.” – reported the Maritime Office in Gdynia.

It is one of the larger vessels from a shipyard usually involved in constructing smaller vessels. In a statement, the Finnish shipyard emphasised the importance of that contract, which also provides jobs for subcontractors and suppliers in the region.

The vessel has been designed and is being built by the Finnish shipyard in cooperation with two companies from the Netherlands, which is known as a country of experienced designers and builders of dredgers and their equipment. C-Job is responsible for the conceptual, preliminary and technical design. The project involves the integration of dredging equipment supplied by Holland Marine Technologies.

It is a trailing suction hopper dredger (TSHD), one of the smallest, due to the parameters and nature of the bodies of water in which it will operate. Her hopper has a capacity of 950 m³. The vessel is 62.75m long and is fitted with twin-propeller propulsion.

The vessel’s essential dredging equipment, apart from the dredging pump, will be one (located on the starboard side) suction arm (trailing drag), allowing a maximum dredging depth of 18 m. The dredger will be able to operate both in the shallow waters of the Vistula Lagoon and deeper waters.

The unit will be used essentially to maintain depth parameters in the 5 m deep waterway connecting the Vistula Lagoon with the Gulf of Gdansk, including the Elbląg River area. Its task will also be depositing dredged material on an island in the Vistula Lagoon through a system of dredging pipelines. In addition, it will be used to operate and maintain the depth parameters of the approach fairways to the seaports within a depth range of up to 18 m, as indicated by the Maritime Office in Gdynia.

The contract also includes delivering a system of siltation pipelines fitted with floats totalling 200 and 400 metres of laid pipelines. The delivery of this equipment will take place together with transport containers and an anchoring system for the end to be connected to the dredge discharge system. Training of personnel to operate the unit will also be provided.



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