A R140-million, general bulk ship-loader installed at Richards Bay in Transnet Port Terminal’s (TPT) R33-billion Market Demand Strategy (MDS) investment programme.
Custom-built to complement the terminal’s operational envelope, the loader was designed in Austria and built in China, however South African engineering company SANDVIK has managed its entire procurement.
The loader's capacity is a guaranteed 2500 tons per hour (tph) at a bulk density of 1.9 tons per cubic meter (t/m3). The linear travelling loader will be suitable for all export commodities the terminal handles including coal, magnetite, chrome and chloride – among others.
According to Terminal Manager, Victor Mkhize: “This arriving ship-loader is a replacement of the less suited, 35 year-old Krupp machine that has now exceeded its design life.”
He added that the loader not only boasted better outreach and a higher draft to accommodate much larger vessels, it had also been designed to be environmentally friendly with its built-in dust collection system and three dust free loading chutes.
Just over 70% of the terminal’s total commercial trade is export. The addition of equipment is aimed at the MDS’s promise of facilitating unconstrained growth, unlocking demand and creating world-class port operations through improved efficiencies.
TPT Chief Executive Karl Socikwa said: “TPT will in the next seven years, invest in infrastructure, maintenance and expansion, drive growth and increase our footprint in Africa offering improved connectivity to existing and new markets”. Socikwa added that there were several projects currently underway across all terminals to ensure that equipment woes would no longer hinder operational targets.