Port of Houston Core DrillingPort of Houston
ATI will remain heavily involved in the continued expansion of Port Houston and the surrounding infrastructure, and our core drilling services are one of the most important tools in the toolbox for keeping things moving in the region. Aggregate Technologies has provided core drilling through concrete, rock and steel at the port, Intercontinental Airport and for roads and bridge construction and repair. Core drilling has also been implemented around Houston at power plants, water treatment plants and hospitals.
With intermodal shipping continuing to play an ever more important role in logistics, container cranes must be installed at the key ports around the country. Houston’s port required an expansion to link the cargo ships to the waiting railcars. Aggregate Technologies was selected as the core drilling contractor to assist in the installation of the crane railway with holes cored along the length of track.
ATI was under a time crunch with the contractor responsible for the track ready to begin their work. Our team did not panic, and got to work. Every other contractor working on the job was running under a tight schedule, and ATI was determined not to be the weak link.
Drilling for the track should have been a fairly simple job – through concrete with no significant obstructions. As the coring progressed, however, ATI discovered that much of the pier had been constructed using thick structural steel plates. A thick steel plate would have posed a problem to many other concrete contractors, but Aggregate Technologies has invested in the best diamond segmented core bits in the industry. The steel proved to be no match for our blades, and our team was able to drill nearly 500 holes in five days. Our speed and precision minimized project delays and kept every other specialty contractor on track.
Core drilling also helped preserve the Port of Houston on another occasion after an errant barge collided with an underwater concrete dolphin and knocked it off its steel sheet piling and into a deeper area of the channel. This accident caused navigation issues throughout the entire port. Aggregate Technologies was called upon to minimize any delays by pulling the dolphin from the water.
A concrete dolphin is a massive structure that rises out of the water to aid in mooring ships, and removing it would be no easy task. Core drilling became a key part of the solution to lift the giant piece of concrete from the water. Because of how the dolphin had shifted, the only way coring could take place was with a diver operating a hydraulic drill underwater. While this may sound like a huge undertaking, ATI’s operators are ready for any challenge. The diver drilled four holes through the dolphin and flawlessly threaded a length of wire through to allow it to be lifted to safety.