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Iritron wins multi-million Rand cross-border project

August 2022 News

The electrical portion of the scope of supply was successfully delivered to Comilog in June, with the remaining instrumentation and any ad-hoc items scheduled for delivery in August. Frits Stoop and the team plan to be on site to assist with installation and commissioning in November.

Iritron has a history of delivering large engineering projects globally, and this project is no different. The project – designed by Hatch, a global multidisciplinary EPCM consultancy – tasked Iritron in late 2021 with delivering a solution that comprised multiple engineering disciplines with tight deadlines: electrical motor control centres, a control system, CCTV and network cabinets form part of the delivery.

Frits Stoop, Iritron’s engineering and project manager, explains that a project of this magnitude has unique challenges. “Iritron was impacted by worldwide semiconductor shortages which created logistical challenges due to supply chain disruptions and capacity shortages. The ongoing pandemic and port congestion did not alleviate the problem either. This required the team to turn our operations ‘upside down’, in the literal sense, to keep to timelines.”

What is meant by that statement is that the team started work on the MCCs in reverse – activities usually scheduled for the end of a build were completed first. This was a testament to the ingenuity of the project and the engineering team, as no time was wasted waiting for equipment to arrive.

The team got ahead through its technical expertise and proven design methodologies, to ultimately reduce overall project risks posed by the supply chain bottleneck. It implemented highly innovative action plans to deal with these challenges. “We assembled what we could and shipped it off in sections to site, ready to have the outstanding equipment installed on site when it arrived,” he explains.

He adds that the floods in KwaZulu-Natal also presented logistical challenges at the Durban harbour. This posed a problem getting the MCCs packed, inspected and shipped to Gabon. The team thus worked to ensure that its operations were not impacted, with the first portion of the equipment already shipped to the client. “We were assisted by our logistics company, and our first shipment left in May.

“Engineering projects of this scope and scale will present challenges, and only companies with experience and a proven track record get the opportunity to successfully execute such projects.” Stoop adds that this large project was awarded to Iritron owing to its proven engineering expertise and experience in this type of delivery, as executed on a previous project for the same client.

“Three aspects catapulted Iritron above the rest for this portion of the project bid: price, previous experience and quality. We had good experience with the client on a previous engagement, and the quality of our technical expertise and manufacturing is trusted.”

The electrical portion of the scope of supply was successfully delivered to Comilog in June, with the remaining instrumentation and any ad-hoc items scheduled for delivery in August. Stoop and the team plan to be on site to assist with installation and commissioning in October.


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