|Title of Invention||
A FLOATING ORE TRANSFER STATION
|Abstract||A floating ore transfer station (1) for loading of ocean going bulk carriers comprising of: a maneuverable pontoon; having an unloading station (4) to unload barges bringing ore to the said pontoon; a cargo hold (5) to store the said ore; and a cargo retrieval system (8) to retrieve the ore from said cargo hold| and transfer to a ship loading system (6,9) to load the ship.|
|Full Text||Form 2
THE PATENTS ACT, 1970
"A FLOATING ORE TRANSFER STATION"
Auduth Timblo, an Indian citizen, of Cidade de Goa, Vainguinim Beach, Goa - 403 004, India.
The following specification particularly describes and ascertains the nature of this invention and the manner in which it is performed.
FLOATING ORE TRANSFER STATION
The invention relates to a floating ore transfer station and more particularly to an offshore floating ore transfer station with storage and maneuvering capability.
Background of Invention:
For a bulk commodity like iron ore and coal, ocean freight cost constitutes a significant portion of the landed cost to the buyer. The ocean freight increases with voyage distance and declines with increasing vessel size on a given haul route. The freight cost is also dependant and determined by the time spent by a vessel at the loading and unloading port. There is therefore a need for maximization of scale economies due to the relatively high contribution of freight rates to the landed cost.
The economics of ocean trade demand that large bulk carriers of 150,000dwt (dead weight ton) and above are preferred. However, such use is not complemented by the simultaneous development in all ports of the world. One of the reasons is that the large carriers of 200,000dwt and above require approach channels and berthing basins having water depth of more than 22 meters, which is rarely available near the shore. The investment required for building new ports or dredging existing ports to accommodate the new generation bulk carriers is extremely high and many times not justified by the volumes to be handled at the port. Countries like Australia, Brazil and South Africa have built or modified their ports to accommodate vessels of 250,000dwt. These ports are capable of
achieving average loading rates of the tune of 100,000 - 200,000 tons per day and more and can therefore load a 200,000dwt vessel in just under two days.
Indian ports are not geared to load large vessels of 200,000dwt fully. In order to make Indian ore more competitive in the world market there is an acute need for building ports, keeping in mind the world bulk fleet development. In Goa only vessels up to around 70-30,000 dwt can be fully loaded at the ore berth, while vessels up to 275,000 dwt can be part loaded at berth. These larger vessels are then fully loaded with ore from barges through transshipped anchored in deep water in the outer harbor. The transshipper is a converted bulk carrier of around 20,000 to 30,000 dwt capacity fitted with a mechanical ore handling plant. Deck cranes fitted on one side pick up the cargo from barges waiting alongside and transfer this ore to a loader arm/shiploader through a system of hoppers and conveyors. The transhipper has an average loading rate of 12,000 - 15,000 tons per day. It can load vessels up to 200,000 dwt.
The transshipper has no storage means on board and loading depends on the arrival of barges. Inclement weather disrupts the barge traffic causing delays in cargo arrival. This often results in the bunching of barges waiting to be unloaded at the transshipment anchorage. Although the transhipper has made possible the calling of large vessels, it is unable to reduce the time of the vessel in port due to lower daily loading rate and suspension of loading due to non-arrival of barges or suspension of operations due to changing weather conditions.
Furthermore, the transhipper require tug boats to be moved and hence once moored to an ocean going bulk carrier it is not convenient to move it to another anchorage.
The transshipper has no storage. Cargo from the barges is placed on hoppers and a belt running under the hopper conveys it to a ship loader.
Objective and Summary of Invention:
In order to overcome the above limitations the invention provides for a floating ore transfer station.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that can load vessels of up to 250,000dwt.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that is highly maneuravable.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that can surge store cargo in proportion to the barge size.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that can allow an average loading rate of 2500 tons per hour or more.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that can allow continuous loading of ships in the event of delay in incoming barges.
It is an object of the invention to provide a floating ore transfer station that can allow continuous unloading of barges while different holds of the ship are accessed.
To meet the aforementioned objectives the invention provides for a floating ore transfer station for loading of ocean going bulk carriers comprising:
- a maneuverable pontoon;
- an unloading station to unload barges bringing ore to the pontoon;
- a cargo hold to store the unloaded ore;
- a cargo retrieval system to retrieve the ore from the cargo hold;
- a ship loading system to load the ship.
Brief Description of Accompanying Drawings:
The accompanying drawings illustrate preferred embodiments of the invention and, together with the following detailed description, serve to explain the principles of the invention.
Figure 1 illustrates a schematic of the floating ore transfer station.
Figure 2 illustrates another perspective view of the floating ore transfer station.
Figure 3 illustrates a perspective view of the floating ore transfer station moored to an ore carrier and with barges alongside.
Figure 4 illustrates an enlarged view of the openings at the bottom of the surge hopper or cargo hold.
Detailed description of the Invention:
It will be understood by those skilled in the art that the foregoing general description and the following detailed description are exemplary and explanatory of the invention and are not intended to be restrictive thereof.
The invention provides for a floating ore transfer station that is highly maneuverable and can store cargo. The floating ore transfer station can load at an average daily loading rate of up to 50,000 tonnes a day and can load ships of up to 250,000 dwt. The floating ore transfer station offers a surge storage that can be utilized when cargo is short due to delay in barge arrivals. Similarly, when ship loading is stopped for accessing various hatches, unloading of barges into the storage can continue. The floating ore station adopts gravity based self-unloading of cargo using a highly maneuverable pontoon instead of a converted ship.
The floating ore transfer station broadly consists of an unloading station, a cargo hold, a cargo retrieval system and a ship loading system. The unloading station includes deck cranes or excavators, the retrieval system includes belts, feeders and the ship loading system includes a high angle conveyor and a ship loader.
The floating ore transfer station will be fitted with azimuth thrusters that allow it a high maneuverability and also allow it to dock/undock from the ocean going bulk carrier in a short period of time. This provision also allows floating ore transfer station to do away with the requirement of tugs.
surge storage, to a shiploader that is capable of loading ships of up to 250,000 dwt at an average loading rate of 2500 tonnes per hour.
" A number ofdeck cranes (4) mounted on the ore transfer station deck carry out unloading of the barges. The number of deck cranes may vary depending on the size of the ore transfer station and the unloading rate required. These deck cranes lift the ore from the barges and transfer it to the surge hopper or cargo hold (5) of the ore transfer station. Deck mounted cranes with 30 tonnes lift capacity can [f U pj& give an unloading throughput of 2500 tonnes per hour. These high capacity \ machines will almost double the present transshipment rate.
In an embodiment of the invention 4 deck cranes having lift capacity of 30 tonnes and an outreach of 28 meters are used to unload the incoming barges with ore. The crane has a bucket of 10-m3 capacity. Barge unloading rate of 2500 tonne per hour based on a cycle time calculations provided by manufacturers can be attained. This equipment will be electrically powered from the central powerhouse.
With reference now to figure 3 the cargo hold (5) of the ore transfer station in accordance with this invention may be understood. Cargo unloaded by the cargo unloading station or deck cranes (4) is sent to the surge hopper (5). As shown, the cargo hold consists of a number of compartments (10) in which the ore unloaded from the barges may be stored. The cargo hold is in the form of a surge hopper that has bottom openings with gates. Each of the compartments has a number of such openings at its bottom at regular intervals that look like the hopper (7) as shown in figure 3. These openings have a gate that is ekctroaically contTOikdrndkydrgjilkaLly operated, Eadi. hopper (7) hastate
(12) at the bottom. On controlled instruction the gate opens and the material flows by gravity onto a belt of the cargo retrieval system, running below the surge hopper. The surge hopper may also be provided with bin vibrators or air cannons to ensure that sticky ore does not stick to the sides of the cargo hold.
In an embodiment the surge hopper has a storage capacity of up to 5,000 tonnes. Cargo is available at all times and the operation does not stop if barges are delayed or inclement weather does not allow unloading of barges.
Below the hoppers (7) runs a tunnel belt (8) on to which ore from the cargo hold (5) is dropped when the hopper gates are opened. The belt is called a tunnel belt as it runs in a long tunnel below the surge hopper. The tunnel belt (8) transfers the ore to a high angle conveyor HAC (6) that in turn raises the ore to the height of the ship and then by the means of a ship loader (9) loads the various hatches or holds of the bulk carrier (2). Thus the flow of ore from the cargo hold (5) to the carrier (2) is gravity based and fully automated.
The openings or hoppers (7) of the cargo hold (5) may be better visualized with reference to figure 4. As shown, a hopper (7) with its gate (12) open is dropping ore on to the tunnel belt (8). The numerous basket gates allow for better control of the loading process and eliminate the overloading of ore at a particular spot on the tunnel belt. The basket gates allow for a uniformly loaded tunnel belt that carries the ore to the high angle conveyor. The capacity of the entire cargo retrieval system has to be average of 2500 tonne per hour or average 50000 tonnes per day.
Referring again to figure 3, the high angle conveyor (6) has a ship loader (9) at its upper end. The ship loader (9) will have a length of 40m fitted with a reversible shuttle conveyor at the end to load maximum vessels of 250,000 dwt. The cargo will have to be elevated from the hopper bottom to at least 25 meters to enable safe loading of an empty cape size vessel.
Thus the floating ore station offers advantages due to its high maneuverability. The floating ore station can tackle two or more transshipments at two or more anchorage. Unlike the conventional transhipper, the floating ore transfer station can move to a different anchorage quickly and conveniently. The floating ore transfer station is provided with azimuth thrusters and can therefore dock to or undock from the ocean going bulk carrier in short time, and without assistance of tugs. Thus, it is never waiting for cargo; rather it moves to accept cargo at an anchorage and does the transshipment operation.
Further, the floating ore transfer station has a handling capacity of around 50,000 tons per day. The cargo transported by one shipper or ore supplier at an anchorage is typically around 20,000 tonnes per day. Thus the floating ore transfer station can finish loading at one anchorage and quickly move to another to start loading at that anchorage. This ensures that there is maximum utilization of the floating ore transfer station.
The operations will take place at an open sea anchorage, offshore Goa, up to wave height of 2.5 metres and wind speed of up to 25 knots.
It will be readily appreciated by those skilled in the art that the present invention is not limited to the specific embodiments herein shown. Thus variations may be
1. A floating ore transfer station (1) for loading of ocean going bulk carriers
- a maneuverable pontoon; having
- an unloading station (4) to unload barges bringing ore to the said pontoon;
- a cargo hold (5) to store the said ore; and
- a cargo retrieval system (8) to retrieve the ore from said cargo hold| and transfer to a ship loading system (6,9) to load the ship.
2. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the pontoon has a powerhouse to power the equipment.
3. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the pontoon has an area for crew accommodation.
4. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the pontoon is equipped with navigational aids.
5. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the unloading station includes deck cranes that unload ore from the barges and transfer it to the cargo hold.
6. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the cargo hold comprises of a number of compartments to store the ore unloaded from the barges.
7. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the cargo hold has a storage capacity of 5000 tonnes.
8. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the cargo hold is provided with air cannons to inhibit the sticking of ore to the sides of the cargo hold.
9. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the cargo hold is provided with numerous hoppers at the bottom for releasing ore on to the cargo retrieval system.
10. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 9 wherein the hoppers at the bottom of the cargo hold are provided with gates that are electronically controlled.
11. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the cargo retrieval system includes a tunnel belt running below the cargo hold in a long tunnel for transferring ore from the cargo hold to the ship loading system.
12. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the ship loading system includes a high angle conveyor for raising the ore received from the tunnel belt to a required height.
13. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the ship loading system includes a ship loader for loading the ore in to the various holds of the ship.
14. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein ship loader has a reach of 40 metres, such that it can load bulk carriers of up to 250,000 dwt.
15. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein high angle conveyor has a height of at least 20 meters.
16. A floating ore transfer station as claimed in claim 1 wherein the daily loading rate is 50,000 tonnes.
Dated this 17th day of December 2003.
Of Anand And Anand Advocates Attorney for the Applicant
|Indian Patent Application Number||1283/MUM/2003|
|PG Journal Number||42/2008|
|Date of Filing||17-Dec-2003|
|Name of Patentee||AUDUTH TIMBLO|
|Applicant Address||CIDADE DE GOA, VAINGUINIM BEACH, GOA - 403 004, INDIA.|
|PCT International Classification Number||B 63 B 25/00|
|PCT International Application Number||N/A|
|PCT International Filing date|