38 caissons in 300 days and 300 nights
It took 10 months, with all their days and nights, working 24 hours continuously from Monday to Sunday, to complete the manufacture of the 38 floating reinforced concrete caissons that are now part of the new breakwaters of the port of Gdansk.
More than two kilometers long, the new sheltered water area will improve the operability of the port and of the container terminal, in its current and future configuration. After its forthcoming expansion, it will become one of the largest container terminals in the Baltic Sea.
The dikes of mixed typology are formed by a caisson on the inner side, which supports a breakwater slope and tetrapod’s that form the protection on the sea side. The design of the dock was based on previous experience in the development of Rover Maritime's "No Waves" anti-reflective caisson patent. In this way, large windows have been built in the outer and inner walls of the caisson to reduce the reflection of the incident waves inside the dock.
Reinforced concrete floating caissons are a construction typology widely used in the Mediterranean, being Spain a pioneer in its development and a place where a high level of specialization has been acquired in the last decades, only comparable to Japan. Today, this technology has been imported and extended to several countries where customers have discovered the technical, economic and time advantages of this construction solution. This is the case of Poland.
The Rover Group's firm commitment to the use of caissons in the tendering phase, has enabled us to win one of the most important maritime contracts, in technical and economic terms, in Northern Europe.
For the execution of these caissons, Rover Maritime towed its caisson dock more than 2,200 miles from the Bay of Algeciras to the Port of Gdansk.
Definitely this technology brings a great added value in the construction of vertical dikes and gravity docks implying, in the range of depths and suitable ground conditions, enormous economic and operational advantages of the infrastructure.
The manufacture of caissons is probably one of the cases where the construction of civil works is closer to an industrial process, being especially relevant the efficiency of each of the processes that make up the complete execution of the caisson. O
ne of the special features , a part from optimizing lead times and ensuring a product with the highest quality standards and durability in marine environments, is the continuous sliding of the reinforced concrete walls of the caisson 24 hours a day, seven days a week, avoiding, in this way, the formation of cold joints.
To have/take a clear idea of the dimensions of the project, the following figures will give us a the magnitude of the work executed in less than 10 months. A total of 57,000 m3 of concrete and 6,500 tons of steel were used in the 38 caissons. By means of a hydraulic system consisting of 33 20-ton jacks, a total of 486 linear meters in height, equivalent to a 162-story building, have been slid. The team consisted of 10 engineers, 4 foremen, 9 specialists in the handling of the caisson dam ballast and hydraulic formwork equipment, as well as 100 officials for the execution of the works.
Rover Group would like to congratulate the construction team whose efforts have made this feat possible. Facing multiple new challenges and working on this technology for the first time in Poland in a new multicultural environment, with extreme weather conditions, has been a continuous challenge to slip formwork and pour concrete in the winter months. All of this has been possible thanks to the great leadership of our staff.
Our most sincere congratulations for the sustained effort during more than 300 days and 300 nights, which have made the 38 floating caissons of reinforced concrete a reality.
Rover Maritime is currently developing multiple innovation projects for the application of reinforced concrete floating caissons in new uses such as floating and gravity foundations for offshore wind turbines.