The new fenders will be installed along the port’s Bykaia quay, allowing larger ships to berth alonside.
The two MV1250 linked corner fender systems, each of which comprises three modular fender panels, will be installed either side of seven MV750 side modular fenders at the 84mtr quay. One MV750 side panel will also be installed on either side of the quay at 16mtr.
Askjell Våge, managingdirector at A. Våge AS, says: ‘Located 1,300 kilometers from the North Pole, the port of Longyearbyen represents a logistic and commercial hub for cargo and cruise ships for the Svalbard archipelago. However, the port’s existing fenders weren’t able to successfully accommodate larger vessels.
A. Våge worked with Trelleborg and its representative for marine fenders in Norway, Fenconor, to define the ideal solution that would not only stand the test of time in even the harshest of arctic weather conditions, but guarantee the demanding load-bearing requirements of larger vessels.’
A recent report carried out by Trelleborg, which surveyed 200 port owners, operators, contractors and consultants on a range of industry issues, revealed that 40% don’t think current port infrastructure is adequate to keep up with the onwards logistics demands of increased vessel sizes and throughput.
When the wider quay upgrade is complete, Longyearbyen’s Bykaia will offer 116mtr of deep water quay, with up to nine meters depth, enabling berthing for vessels over 330mtr in length.
In 2013, 46 cruise ships carrying 38,526 passengers called at Longyearbyen in Svalbard, including around 10,000 on turnaround.
All ships including cruise vessels with heavy fuel on board are allowed to visit Longyearbyen and Isfjorden now and also in the future beyond January 1, 2015 via a permanent corridor.
However from next year alternatives to Magdalenefjorden and Ny Ålesund, currently popular on cruise itineraries, need to be sought and Svalbard Tourism and local tour operators are working on developing new programmes based around Longyearbyen and Isfjorden including hiking, glacier walks, dog sledding, boat trips, bird watching, museums, art and culture.