Costa Crociere has announced that the last sponson, P1, has been installed on the port side of the Concordia this afternoon. Thus, according to Costa, technicians can now start to test all the systems for the refloating of the ship.

“Following installation of the last sponson, we can start the countdown to refloating and final departure of the wreck from Giglio Island,” said Costa CEO Michael Thamm, in a prepared statement. “All our energies are focused on the successful conclusion of this unprecedented engineering challenge, and to remove the Concordia wreck as soon as possible, in compliance with the highest environmental and safety standards.”

A total of 30 sponsons have been positioned on the two sides of the Concordia.  When the refloating operation begins, the sponsons will be gradually emptied of ballast water by means of a pneumatic system thereby providing the necessary buoyancy to refloat the wreck. At the end of this operation, the Concordia will have a draft of approximately 18.5 meters.  The ship will then leave Giglio Island and be taken to Genoa, for dismantling and recycling.

Costa said further that the last phases of the Concordia wreck removal project will be explained in detail in the next few days. Plans call for the ship to be moved during the summer.