CalPortland’s Santosh aggregate site, located in Scappoose, Oregon, required new excavating equipment for ongoing efficient mining operations. A cutter head suction dredge was needed to replace an aging (35 year-old!) Marion dragline which has been used at the Santosh site since 1996. After many years of reliable service, the dragline was approaching the end of its useful life and was determined that it could not meet future mining requirements.

The new dredge, a Marlin Class, non-self-propelled transportable Hydraulic Cutter-Suction Dredge, is named “Betsy J” in the honor of Oregon Senator Betsy Johnson. The dredge is equipped with hydraulic winches on the deck that move the dredge forward, backward and to either side. It is designed to extract material from the aggregate deposit and transport it to land using a system of suction pipes and hydraulic pumps. It will access 60% more additional reserves than the dragline operation at a higher production rate. It is powered by electricity and can move material up to 12 inches in diameter at the rate of 20 feet per second.

The dredge dimensions are 280’ L x 52’ W x 40’ H. This state of the art dredge will allow the company to keep up with increasing demand for concrete/asphalt/construction aggregates in the Portland/Vancouver and NW market. The large size of the dredge required some innovative design solutions, such as the cylindrical ladder design instead of a lattice boom design that has been traditionally used for dredge ladders. CalPortland engineers and the manufacturer designed the Betsy J to provide optimal performance for the conditions at the Santosh plant.

Take a look as Betsy J entered water for the first time.