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A swell job for Jumbo Jubilee's maiden voyage

December 24 - Jumbo Shipping's latest newbuilding, Jumbo Jubilee, completed its maiden voyage after successfully loading, transporting and installing two 1,250 tonne shiploaders for FL Smidth in challenging circumstances.

Jumbo Jubilee started her first voyage from her home port Rotterdam, setting sail for Vitória in Brazil, where two shiploaders were waiting, each with a processing capacity of 16,000 tonnes of iron ore per hour. With ample clearance between the crane jib and cargo; and enough lifting height to clear the conveyor belt at the centre of the pier, the loading operation was relatively easy. It was at Tubarão, where offloading and installation were due, that the real work started.

The port of Tubarão is half open to the sea and is subjected to continuos ocean swell. As conditions vary between 0.20 m and 1.10 m of swell, ship and cargo can easily become the victim of roll or swing, a real challenge when handling a 1,250 tonne piece of equipment.

Jumbo's Engineering Dept. countered this challenge by analysing and checking swell statistics for the last ten years and using detailed weather forecasts and computer analysis to predict the vessel's behaviour. Thus, a window of opportunity was identified consisting of manageable wave heights and periods. When a window was chosen, the vessel was ballasted to an optimum level of stability, resulting in minimum pitch and roll in the given conditions. To leave nothing to coincidence a Motion Reference Unit (MRU) was used to register actual ship movements.

With these preparations, Jumbo Jubilee and her crew were ready. The shiploader was lifted on board, brought to Tubarão and installed safely on its rails, under control and according to plan. Afterwards, the client commented: "It was fascinating to see such professionals at work." However, Jumbo's crew was really humbled by the client's reaction to the safe discharge of the second piece, when he stated: "Jumbo - veni, vidi, vici."

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