WASHINGTON, June 2 (UPI) — U.S. Navy officials say they have completed multiphase testing of new crane technology designed for at-sea, ship-to-ship cargo transfers.
The Large Vessel Interface Lift On/Lift Off technology demonstration completed in the Gulf of Mexico last month marked a major milestone in cargo transfer capabilities, officials said.
The testing involved the transfer of 128 containers from one ship to another with waves of up 3 feet in height. Operators picked up and placed down an unobstructed container, lifted a container obstructed on several sides and lowered containers into obstructed “holes,” officials said.
Paul Hess, program manager in the Office of Naval Research’s Sea Warfare and Weapons Department, said the crane performed as planned, yet proved more capable than the ship’s mooring configurations would allow.
He said the technology, if it’s employed in future fleets, would facilitate the flow of “containerized” logistics through the sea base to the shore, eliminating the need for a secure deep water port. It would also enable the rapid and safe transfer of containers, Humvees and other heavy loads at sea.
Navy officials said they have been in talks with transition partners about the future of the technology, but no decisions have been made.
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