Last few days, the two lock gates of the IJmuiden sea lock were successfully put into place on the canal side. During a four-day operation, the steel doors were sailed into the lock gate of the inner bay with extreme precision. It concerns the operational door and the spare door, which is placed in the so-called dry dock. In September 2020, the first door on the sea side had already been installed in the door casing of the outer section.
[Original message from Rijkswaterstaat:] The rolling doors were installed in stages. First, the operational door weighing 3000 tonnes was moved to the most south-westerly bollard of the inner head. Next, this lock gate was turned through 90 degrees by means of large winches and manoeuvred into the door casing.
Once the door was in the correct position, the lock gate was connected to both the top roller carriage, which drives the door, and the bottom roller carriage. The bottom roller ensures that the door can move over the rail track on the threshold of the sea lock when the lock is opened and closed.
Spare door in the dry dock
After installing the operational door, the spare door was brought into the dry dock two days later. This door was also positioned with the help of winches and sunk to the floor of the dry dock. The dry dock is part of the inner head of the sea lock, situated next to the door case. The dry dock is closed with the dry dock door. The spare door is used when one of the operational doors needs to be serviced. For that reason, all three doors have the same size (72 metres long, 11 metres wide and 24 metres high), so they are interchangeable. The dry dock can be put out of service so that the doors can be inspected and maintenance carried out in dry conditions.
Both doors had been lying in the Amerikahaven in Amsterdam for some time and were transported to IJmuiden on Tuesday 16 March. The operation of the doors will be extensively tested in the coming months. The doors for IJmuiden sea lock were made in South Korea. In the autumn of 2018, they were transported by sea to the Netherlands and then fitted with the technical installations. The operational lock gate on the canal side is double watertight together with the lock gate on the sea side. They therefore form an important part of the high water barrier at IJmuiden. The doors also have an important function in levelling the water level during the lock procedure. This levelling takes place via sixteen valves in the doors.
IJmuiden sea lock
In order to provide space for ever larger ocean-going vessels, work has been ongoing in IJmuiden since 2016 on the construction of the largest sea lock in the world. The new lock will be 500 metres long, 70 metres wide and 18 metres deep. The project is a joint venture between the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, the province of North Holland, the municipality of Amsterdam, Port of Amsterdam and the municipality of Velsen. Contractor consortium OpenIJ is building the new sea lock on behalf of Rijkswaterstaat. The lock is expected to be put into operation in early 2022.
Photos are made by Ko van Leeuwen