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A backhoe dredger is a type of mechanical dredging equipment. It consists of a hydraulic excavator mounted on a pontoon. It can be deployed on a wide variety of dredging projects. In Van Oord’s fleet, backhoes Simson and Goliath are the largest hydraulic dredging cranes. They are used to dredge ports and provide services to the offshore industry worldwide. The Simson and the Goliath are equipped with a bucket that between 20 and 40 cubic metres of material, and they can work at a dredging depth of up to 26 metres. The total installed engine power is more than 4,000 kilowatt per vessel.

During the construction of the Liverpool 2 project, Van Oord deployed the backhoe dredger Goliath to dredge soft materials. This new port facility can now accommodate some of the world’s largest container vessels, up to 13,500 Twenty Foot Equivalent Units (TEU's), two at a time.

Van Oord has 5 backhoe dredgers in its fleet:

  • Goliath
  • Hippopotes
  • Razende Bol
  • Simson
  • Titan

How does it work?

A backhoe dredger consists of a hydraulic grab crane mounted on a dredging pontoon. The dredging pontoon is usually held in place by three spud poles. Backhoes are used to dredge heavy clay, soft stone, blast rock, and soil thought to contain boulders, for example in foreshore protection operations. 

More information

Equipment leaflets

Here we offer leaflets with specifications for our featured equipment. Please feel free to contact us if you would like more information.

Goliath / Simson
  • Vessel

    Goliath / Simson

  • Year of construction

    2008 / 2009

  • Total power installed

    4,126 kilowatt

Razende Bol
  • Vessel

    Razende Bol

  • Year of construction

    1998

  • Total power installed

    1,636 kilowatt

Titan
  • Vessel

    Titan

  • Year of construction

    2013

  • Total power installed

    828 kilowatt