As part of the salvage plan to be carried out by the Italo-American Titan-Micoperi group to remove the wreck of the Costa Concordia, Fincantieri has been awarded a contract worth tens of millions of euros to build watertight boxes, known as caissons, to be used in the operation to refloat the ship.
A total of 30 steel caissons with a combined weight of approximately 11,500 tonnes will be built in Fincantieri’s various shipyards.
The Costa Concordia salvage plan involves the use of these caissons to right and refloat the wreck so that it can be removed in one piece.
Once the ship has been stabilised, caissons will be fixed to the upper side of the hull and gradually filled with water.
The ship will then be righted using a system of ‘strand jacks’ – a hydraulic mechanism for pulling cables which is fixed to an undersea platform.
When the ship is upright, caissons full of water will also be fixed to the other side of the hull.
The caissons on both sides will then be emptied to refloat the wreck and once floated, the wreck will be towed to an Italian port.
Meanwhile on Giglio Island, work to prepare the wreck for salvage is proceeding on schedule.
Structural jobs are currently underway to cut and remove some external parts of the ship (OVI SAT antenna, forward masthead light, water slide) in order to facilitate the next stage of the plan.
The seabed is also being inspected regularly ahead of the site clean-up operation to preserve the marine environment, which will be the main focus once the wreck has been removed.
The preliminary stage is expected to finish by the end of July and will be followed by the ship stabilisation phase.