Giant energy construction vessel passing through Bosphorus to Bulgaria
Sefa Özkaya - Fıtrat Alkaç ISTANBUL
AA PhotoSaipem 7000, the world’s second largest crane vessel, is currently passing through the Bosphorus on its way to Bulgaria to take part in the huge energy projects.
Four Turkish towboats are escorting the giant vessel, which has a lifting capability of 14,000 tons at 42 meters, throughout its 8-hour passage to the Black Sea through the Bosphorus. The vessel entered the Bosporus at 07.00 a.m. today.
The 98 m-long vessel left the Rotterdam port in the Netherlands on Sept. 5, stopped at Palermo in Italy on Oct. 21, and reached Turkey’s Dardanelles Strait on Oct. 29.
It takes one hour for the 117.8-ton Saipem 7000 to travel nine nautical miles.
The vessel first came to the Bosphorus in 2001 to construct a gas pipeline from Russia to the Turkish province of Samsun, as part of the Blue Stream project. In that project, it broke a world record by laying pipes at depth of 2,150 meters in the Black Sea.
Saipem was contracted by South Stream Transport B.V. for the construction of the first line of the South Stream Offshore Pipeline, from Russia to Bulgaria across the Black Sea, for a total value of approximately 2 billion euros in March 2014, according to a written statement issued by the company.
“Saipem 7000’s offshore activities will commence at the end of 2014. In November 2014, the Castoro Sei vessel will also move to Russian waters to start activities in the shallow water,” said the statement.