Anchor Industries recently received an order for the supply of 89mm R3S studless mooring chain for SAPREF’s SBM in Durban, completing a year long process of specification, design and tendering for this strategically important mooring project.

Situated on the East Coast of South Africa, SAPREF a joint venture between Shell Refining SA and BP Southern Africa, is the largest crude oil refinery in the country with 35% of SA’s refining capacity. They process 24 000 tons of crude per day, producing 2.7 billion litres of petrol per year. To facilitate the importation of the crude oil, a single buoy mooring (SBM) is anchored about 2.5kms off the coast, allowing Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCC) to dock and discharge up to 2 million barrels per shipment which accounts for about 80% of all crude oil imports into South Africa. The crude oil is pumped via subsea pipelines to storage tanks on land and then into the refinery to be converted into 10 main products at a rate of 20 000 litres every minute.

“The economic and strategic importance of this SBM was immediately evident to us,” explains Dale Hutcheson Managing Director, “so a large part of securing this order was in convincing SAPREF that we could provide a product of the highest quality, in the tight time period they needed, at a price they were willing to pay. I’m proud to say that with over 25 years of experience stocking and supplying mooring equipment on local and international projects, we’ve built a good relationship with the best international equipment manufacturers and secured the order to replace the original chain and fittings, which were installed 27 years ago.” Hutcheson added, “Anchor was involved with the technical aspects such as the estimation of the drag and penetration of the anchors, the anchor shackle design, calculation of the buried chain length and the process control for the manufacturing of the chain to ABS specifications. Coordinating this between manufacturers in Korea, Engineers in Holland and clients in Durban wasn’t always easy, but with technology we were able to bring everyone together, to ensure a successful project.”

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