Third Set of Locks Fully Operational at Panama Canal

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Grupo Unidos por el Canal (GUPC) has brought the third set of locks at the Panama Canal to full operability, which is the result of months of work, meaning that the operation of the locks has been satisfactorily tested according to the specifications of the Panama Canal Authority.

Giuseppe Quarta, CEO of GUPC, said: “The project is ready to receive the first ships, proving that it works to perfection as we fully meet the requirements of the contract.

“Today, as in all these years, we have proven GUPC’s technical ability in delivering a high-quality, fully functioning project. The results of the tests confirm that we have a world-class system.”

Technical Paper: The Third Lock Expansion

For the consortium, reaching the complete operability of the work meant the successful completion of more than 2,000 tests on both sides of the project, the programming of more than 300 different scenarios for the passage of a ship and more than 120 trials in order to ensure that the hydraulic functioning of the project amply exceeds the requirements and other obligations.

Meanwhile, the contractor is finishing minor works related to the esthetics of the project like urban planning, gardening, the painting of buildings, the setting up of fences and the installation of security systems.

This follows recent news that a wall had collapsed along the Miraflores Locks, which did not affect the operability of the canal.

The canal is on schedule to be completed on June 26, 2016.

Fact File: Grupo Unidos por el Canal, S.A. (GUPC SA) is the contractor responsible for the design and construction of the Third Set of Locks – the main project of the canal expansion program. The group's technical capacity and experience in infrastructure projects in various countries of the world are ensuring that this project will be held to the highest standards of quality and within the stipulated time. GUPC is led by Salini Impregilo of Italy alongside Sacyr Vallehermoso of Spain, Jan De Nul of Belgium and Constructura Urbana, SA (CUSA) of Panama.

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