Inpex continues to test the equipment before the Darwin harbour dredging project commences in a couple of days, reports ABC News.
The cutter-suction dredger Athena, the largest vessel of this kind ever seen in Australian waters, will begin its work this week and will keep operating for almost two years.
The Athena will be supported by a pair of 220-metre trailer suction hopper dredges acting as barges, which will take the dredge spoil to a site 12 kilometres off Lee Point.
“The ongoing data monitoring that we do and the day-to-day adjustment and flexibility we can bring to bear on the program may bring us to a point in the future where we may consider dredging for some of or all of the dry season,” stated Sean Kildare, the company’s Darwin-based general manager.
This project should start about two kilometres from Blaydin Point, and the contractor, Rotterdam-based Van Oord, will dredge approximately 15 million cubic metres of mainly hard soil from the harbour.
Dredging Today Staff, October 30, 2012; Image: Van Oord