The Netherlands: Blue Block Behemoth Getting Ready

Business & Finance

The Blockbuster has been making a big impression on the Maasvlakte in recent months. In the autumn, this specially-designed crane will place the first huge blocks in the Maasvlakte seawall. Testing is underway and the operators are practising with the new crane.

The biggest blocks in the coming hard seawall are concrete blocks weighing 40 tons. About 20,000 of these are needed.

They will come from the existing block dam, the present Maasvlakte seawall. A floating crane (backhoe) is lifting the blocks out of the sea with a ripper tooth.

They are being stored temporarily. The Blockbuster will soon start placing the blocks in the sea about 50 metres away from the fixed wall. They will serve as a breakwater in front of the stony dunes. In this way, the Maasvlakte seawall will be able to withstand the most severe storms, those that may arise once in 10,000 years. Although its size might suggest otherwise, the Blockbuster will be delivering precision work.

The blocks will be placed to an accuracy of 15 centimetres. Acoustic cameras will determine the exact position of the blocks under water. In this way, they can be built up in a particular way and the block dam will be extra strong.


Source: Maasvlakte 2, September 2, 2010