The development of the wind turbine sector is creating new challenges for the shipping industry as the massive blades and elements are shipped from their manufacturers to the staging points for their installation. APM Terminals Pecem, at the port of Pecem in northeast Brazil, recently handled the loading of three blades, which it reports became the largest non-containerized cargo operation in the world.
The shipment consisted of three wind turbine blades, each of which measured approximately 238 feet in length. While these blades were only about two-thirds the length of the largest wind blades ever built, they were the largest in Brazil and needed to be shipped from the port of Pecem in the north to the state of Santa Catarina in the south where they will be installed as part of the growing wind energy sector in the region. Each of the three blades weighs 21 tons requiring a complex loading operation. Read on.