Fall Pipe & Mining Vessel Joseph Plateau launched on Friday 3 August 2012

Following its sister vessel in 2009, the vessel Joseph Plateau was launched on Friday 3 August 2012 at the Spanish shipyard Construcciones Navales de Norte in Sestao.

This 191,5 m long vessel will be used for precise rock dumping to a depth of 2,000 m. The system for the unfolding of the fall pipe is extremely advanced and operates fully automatically. At the bottom of the fall pipe there is a ROV (Remote Operated Vehicle) that accurately corrects the position of the lower end of the fall pipe. The vessel has a 31,500 ton loading capacity and makes it possible to dump 2,000 tons of rock per hour at a depth of 2,000 m. The vessel can accomodate 84 persons.
The fall pipe vessel Joseph Plateau will mostly be deployed in the offshore industry in which oil and gas pipes have to be installed at large depths: the Joseph Plateau can level the seabed and dump rock up to a depth of 2,000 m. The fall pipe can process boulders with a diameter up to 400 mm, which is more than any other fall pipe vessel on the market. The Joseph Plateau is also suitable for deepsea mining operationas, i.e. for recovery of minerals from the seabed and cable laying activities.

The godmother of the ship, Ms. Ann-Sophie Meuleman, daughter of Mrs. Isabelle De Sadeleer and niece of Mr. De Nul, cut the ribbon holding the traditional bottle, wishing the vessel and its crew a safe and prosperous journey. The bottle crashed, and accompanied by the sound of the horns of nearby vessels in the harbour, the ‘Joseph Plateau’ slid into the water.

The vessel will be delivered beginning 2013 and a first project is already ensured.

New offshore contracts in Australia, Russia, Canada and the Barentsz Sea

New projects with a total value of more than 500 million Euros were added to the order book of Jan De Nul Group during the past month.

The assignment for Chevron for the installation of the Wheatstone pipeline at the west coast of Australia is the largest contract. Before installing the pipeline, trenches must be dredged in the hard seabed. In order to protect the pipeline, it must also be covered with sand and rocks after installation. Furthermore, prelay rock berms have to be installed, enabling the new pipeline to cross existing pipelines.

In Canada, the Traling Suction Hopper Dredger ‘Cristóbal Colón’ will execute a wellhead protection excavation in the Atlantic Ocean east of Newfoundland. This excavation will protect subsea oil installations from the impact of icebergs. The ‘Cristóbal Colón’, the largest dredger in the world, is the only dredger able to dredge to a depth of 155 m. The wellhead protection excavation is to be dredged in a water depth of 135 m.

At the east coast of the Siberian island of Sakhalin, the fallpipe vessel ‘Simon Stevin’ installs umbilicals for Gazprom at 90 m water depth. These umbilicals serve to control the gas field manifolds from land. This gas field is now a priority development for Gazprom, because of an increased demand in Japan due to the shutdown of the nuclear power plants.

Further up the east coast of this island, the Cutter Suction Dredger ‘Fernão de Magelhães’ is dredging an access channel for Exxon. This channel will enable to bring in barges from the sea onto the shore with modules for the onshore drill site. The ‘Fernão de Magelhães’ started the works as soon as the ice had melted sufficiently so that the client can make maximum use of the ice-free season.

In the Tatar Strait between Siberia and Sakhalin, Jan De Nul Group’s rock dumping vessels ‘La Boudeuse’ and ‘Willem de Vlamingh’ are executing rock dumping works to protect a subsea pipeline from ice floes crossing the strait. The rocks are loaded in the Siberian port Sovgavan. The pipeline guarantees the connection of the gas fields east of Sakhalin with the mainland.

Jan De Nul Group will sail even more up to the north, in the Barents Sea near Nova Zembla. The Group will execute dredging and rock dumping works to protect pipelines which are transporting gas from the Jamal Peninsula to Western Europe.

Recently, a first project has been awarded to be executed by the Joseph Plateau. Upon commissioning, the vessel will execute rock installation in Norway at a waterdepht of 420 m for the protection and stabilisation of a new pipeline.

Jan De Nul is looking for technical personnel and crew members

In the meantime, Jan De Nul Group continues its search for technical personnel and crew members. Recently, Jan De Nul started a huge HR campaign in cooperation with Kamagurka, a Belgian cartoonist. The key role players in this campaign are his cartoon figures ‘Bert en Bobje’, very well known in Belgium.

The Group does not only need new talent to man these new vessels, but also the sites worldwide.