Heavylift / Breakbulk
Cold boxes to the desert
The petrochemical industry is growing in leaps and bounds in Saudi Arabia. Late last year the Hamburg-based shipping firm Rickmers-Linie transported two cold boxes for Sadara, the Linde technology corporation’s largest on-site petrochemical project in the region.
Though Rickmers-Linie’s multipurpose heavylift vessels regularly ship components for industrial plants, some loads are particularly interesting on account of their extraordinary dimensions.
At the end of last year, for example, the Hamburg-based heavylift specialist Rickmers-Linie carried two cold boxes, which had been manufactured by the company Linde, from Bremen (Germany) to Jubail (Saudi Arabia).
Complex chemical industry needs
Linde says that its engineering division is the only entity in the world that manufactures, owns and operates synthetic gas plants run with its own technology. The two cold boxes will be used for the separation of gas during the production of synthetic gas by the Sadara Petrochemical Company, based in Jubail, one of the world’s largest chemical complexes.
Sadara is a joint venture between the Saudi Arabian Oil Company and the Dow Chemical Company. The cold boxes have a very important role to play for Sadara, which is Linde’s largest on-site petrochemical project in the region. Sadara requires carbon monoxide, hydrogen and ammonia, mainly to produce aromatics, isocyanates (MDI and TDI), amino acids and hydrogen peroxide. Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) and 2.4 toluene diisocyanate (TDI) are the basis from which polyurethane plastics are made. These are found in many products, including synthetic fibres, insulating foam, mattresses and car seats.
Cold boxes are amongst the most crucial components in the construction of plants such as the Sadara facility, due to their dimensions as well as their long production time. Transporting such a unit thus requires particularly careful handling as well as perfect delivery timing. The Rickmers Chennai loaded the units with its own on-board cranes at warehouse 24 in the Neustädter port area in Bremen (Germany).
Calls on inducement
The two cold boxes weighed in at 358 t each and measured 31.4 x 14 x 9.5 m. After a voyage of 23 days the Rickmers Chennai arrived at the port of Jubail, on the east coast of Saudi Arabia. Both the loading and discharging operations were coordinated and supervised by the shipping line’s supercargoes.
Rickmers’ fleet does not call regularly at either the port of loading or discharge, but the team nevertheless handled operations smoothly. Rickmers-Linie offers its customers the option of adding ports around the world to its scheduled timetable as and when required.
The German company KOG Transport took care of all freight forwarding arrangements, such as delivery free on board, seafreight booking and onward carriage to the construction site. KOG Transport, which is a member of the Heavy Lift Group, has 21 representative offices of its own worldwide.