Xylem has won a contract to provide specialized mixer equipment and associated technology as part of a significant development of the Panama Canal.
The development project aims to improve the efficiency of one of the world’s key channels for international maritime trade by decreasing passage times by as much as 35 percent. It is hoped that it will also lead to increased shipping traffic by enabling the passage of much larger vessels through the canal. The development is in response to increasing commercial traffic as a result of the continued expansion of the shipping transport market.
Source: Xylem Inc.
The project involves the construction of a new channel and a third set of locks to complement the existing channel by allowing the transit of larger ships (known as ‘Post Panamax’ ships) with a capacity of up to 12,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs); a length of 366 metres, a width of 49 metres and a draught of 15 metres.
A major feature of the project is 16 rolling gates of 56 meters in length, up to 30 meters in height and 10 meters wide weighing up to 4,000 tons each. These gates and ancillary structures are being fabricated by Cimolai in Italy (Pordenone) and delivered by ship to Panama where they will be installed and commissioned. Xylem will supply 64 Flygt 4600 series compact mixers, which will ensure that corrosive sediments do not build up on the gates. Xylem’s solution will deliver superior mixing performance to this challenging application.
The development project is being undertaken by Impregilo, a global player in the construction of large-scale infrastructure.
Marco Leoncavallo, Treatment Market Manager for Xylem said, “We have significant experience developing specialised solutions for complex applications such as this. We have incorporated similar Flygt technology to what we are using here in comparably demanding applications involving drilling mud, or bentonite homogenization tanks in the oil industry.”
The installation is expected to be operational by April 2015.