Fluctuating demand and a disrupted supply chains caused by the coronavirus means that demand for flexible solutions are needed. Shi.E.L.D. Services has developed a design and construction concept for these volatile times.
One size does not fit all in shipping and Shi.E.L.D. Services has developed a concept to support the multitude of scenarios facing transhipper operators around the world.
With the world in turmoil at present, flexibility is the key in delivering a vessel that is designed to meet a reduction of handled volumes and prices, a change of government policies regarding mining and export or under-developed infrastructure.
“Often we have seen transhipper vessels that don’t have the right equipment for a project, either too much or too little and it is hard to install or disassemble complex equipment, once the ship is positioned, often in remote areas,” said Luca Condini, Technical Director, Shi.E.L.D. Services.
“The idea is that one asset is custom built to meet demands of various project scenarios and whose performances can be improved in incremental steps to meet the demands of each project would give the final clients and the operators the opportunity to optimize the logistics part of the project and to reduce the costs,” said Corrado Cuccurullo, CEO of Shi.E.L.D. Services.
Accurate planning for long term projects is very difficult and contracts of 10 or more years are no longer the norm. It is a logical next step that transshipment equipment has to be designed as to provide a flexible response.
To meet these needs, Shi.E.L.D. Services developed the concept of ‘modularity’ applied to the design of transhippers: a unit that starts off with basic characteristics and limited performance, which requires a limited investment, but that already includes in its design the possibilities for future improvements. In this way, it is possible to literally transform the basic-type transhipper into a more complete one with more capabilities in terms of operations to be carried out (coal blending, for instance) and higher performances.
If a project develops quickly, transhippers can be a bottleneck as they can’t increase vessel performance any further, but with modular design, new equipment can be installed quickly with minimal costs to meet any increase in volume.
For example, one additional crane can be installed, the power generation plant can be increased by installing additional generating sets, the crew accommodation can also be expanded to house additional crew members. Should the project requirements change and increase again, then a conveyor system can be installed.
Shi.E.L.D. Services modular design provides solutions to operators so they can adapt to fast-changing scenarios and to optimize projects in the transshipment market.