Construction and transport of a mechanical ship unloader in a grain handling terminal: a customized solution to substitute an old equipment in the existing quay with challenging space constraints.


The construction and transport of a mechanical ship unloader in a grain handling terminal is a very complex and articulated operation. Even though these port equipment are usually assembled directly at the final destination area, with an erection process lasting few months. The logistic difficulties and the space lack at the customer’s site in this case forced the GEA-Golfetto Sangati engineers to set up a construction site directly at the Port of Chioggia (Venice, Italy, one hour drive from the Golfetto Sangati headquarters) and then transport the COMBIMEC fully erected to the final site with an heavy lift vessel.

This was an excellent opportunity for the GEA-Golfetto Sangati technicians to face an interesting challenge: COMBIMEC is equipped with two booms, one for unloading soybeans (600 TPH) and the other for loading soybean meal (200 TPH). Combining the two functions of loading and unloading and fulfilling the challenging client requirements required high skills in both designing and assembling the equipment.

GEA shipunloader combimec grainhandling

The construction operation has been carried out in perfect compliance with the loading schedule of the heavy-lift vessel. The transfer from the worksite to the loading berth and loading into the vessel of this impressive construction of approximately 550 tons and 32 meters high, was extremely delicate and carried out in an impeccable and precise manner by a team of very professional technicians.

A pleasant example showing how the development of customized solutions based on customer needs can be an excellent opportunity to increase strength and awareness in the market.