According to media reports, the massive Costa Concordia salvage operation is on schedule to attempt a “parbuckling” of the ship come September. That is: raising it.
While no official date has been announced, the Parbuckling Project website (www.theparbucklingproject.com) states that the project is now 73 percent complete with all anchor blocks and drilling holes installed. Just four sponsons remained to be installed.
An estimated 25 vessels and 474 people are on site, working on the project, according to the website.
Once the final four sponsons are in place, the project is set to attempt to try to rotate the ship upwards.
To date, the ship has already been stabilized by the salvage team, with supports in place holding the ship.
With the 15 refloating sponsons in place, three caissons will be welded to the side of the ship next. The otation will take a few days, as the movement has to be extremely delicate and constantly monitored.
The parbuckling will be performed using strand jacks which will be tightened by several cables attached to the top of the caissons and to the platforms, which will be pulled seawards, while the cables attached to the starboard turrets will be used for balancing.
This is a very delicate phase, during which the forces involved have to be offset carefully to rotate the wreck without deforming the hull.