The Panama Canal expansion project (also called the Third Set of Locks Project) will double the capacity of the Panama Canal probably by 2015 by creating a new lane of traffic and allowing more and larger ships to transit. The project will:

  • Build two new locks, one each on the Atlantic and Pacific sides. Each will have three chambers with water‐saving basins.
  • Excavate new channels to the new locks. Widen and deepen existing channels. Raise Gatun Lake's maximum operating level.

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  Existing Locks Accommodating Passage of PANAMAX Vessels New Locks Accommodating Passage of PANAMAX PLUS and NEW PANAMAX Vessels
Length 294.13 m (965 ft) 366 m (1,200 ft)
Beam 32.31 m (106 ft) 49 m (160.7 ft)
Draft (TFW) 12.04 m (39.5 ft) 15.2 m (49.9 ft)
TEU abt. 5,000 abt. 12,000
  Existing Locks Accommodating Passage of PANAMAX Vessels
Length 294.13 m (965 ft)
Beam 32.31 m (106 ft)
Draft (TFW) 12.04 m (39.5 ft)
TEU abt. 5,000
  New Locks Accommodating Passage of PANAMAX PLUS and NEW PANAMAX Vessels
Length 366 m (1,200 ft)
Beam 49 m (160.7 ft)
Draft (TFW) 15.2 m (49.9 ft)
TEU abt. 12,000

The max. air draught of the vessels will continue to be limited at 57.91 m (190 ft.) due to the Americas Bridge in Balboa.

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When the expansion is completed, the navigational channels will allow the transit of present post‐Panamax containerships, Suezmax, tankers, Capesize, dry‐bulk carriers and larger sizes of liquefied natural gas carriers, passenger ships and other vessel types within the dimensional limitations presented above.

Vessels (other than new buildings), with intend to use the Panama Canal locks will have to undergo retrofitting and will have to assess / retrofit at least the following:

CURRENT PANAMAX SIZED VESSELS (with 12.04m draught limitation) TO PANAMAX‐PLUS VESSELS:

  • Mooring Arrangement assessment and preparation of revised Mooring Arrangement Plan (additional mooring chocks/bollards/rollers will be required).
  • Design of the new mooring fittings’ under‐deck reinforcements.
  • General Arrangement Plan (revised due to additional mooring chocks/bollards/rollers).
  • New Panama Visibility Plan.

NEW PANAMAX VESSELS:

  • Mooring Arrangement assessment (additional mooring chocks/bollards/rollers will be required)
  • Design of the new mooring fittings under‐deck reinforcements
  • General Arrangement Plan (revised due to additional mooring chocks/bollards/rollers, Panama Canal pilot shelter, Panama Canal Light)
  • Panama Visibility Plan
  • Signal Lights Assessment
  • Bridge Wings Shelter Arrangement & Drawings
  • Pilot & Accommodation Ladder Arrangement Assessment
  • Wheelhouse Arrangement & Equipment Assessment
  • Ballast Loading Condition for Panama Canal Transit (with minimum drafts)

WHAT WE OFFER:

HYDRUS Engineering Ltd. can efficiently develop the required studies and final set of drawings for submission to the PANAMA Canal Authorities based on 'OP Notice to Shipping No. N‐1‐2014'. The selection of the new mooring fittings should be made in accordance with industry standards (e.g. ISO 3913:1977 Shipbuilding‐Welded steel bollards, etc.) accepted by the Administration. Final study will also include a detailed list of material and equipment. Panama Canal SOPEP is not included as deliverable.