Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The dinosaur

The Ursus, the aquatic dinosaur you can clearly see in the centre of the photo, was built in 1914, it weighs 2200 tons and is 75 metres high. The floating platform on which the crane rests, is 54 metres long and 24 metres wide.

The rotating crane used to lift a load of 150 tons as high as 70 metres on only one hook.
It could move independently thanks to two engines and two rudders. It had 18 crew members to guarantee the functioning of this huge machine. At full power and with a calm sea it could reach 4 miles per hour.

It was the pride of our dockyards and of the busy commercial city of Trieste. It was built to lift huge engines and move them into the bellies of transatlantic liners, and to carry cannons on the Austrian navy warships.
It lifted locomotives and railroad wagons and during the postwar period it rescued shipwrecks sunk in the gulfs of Trieste and Muggia.

Today, after years of inactivity and a recent brief renovation, it wanders about the Gulf, moving from place to place, waiting to know its future destiny. There are no resources available at the moment to fund its conversion, but the idea is to turn it into a museum eventually.

8 comments:

Vogon Poet said...

Great shot and very interesting post. Good luck to Ursus for its future.

chrome3d said...

A blast from the industrial past. Good luck with the project.

Hilda said...

My mind balks at the size and weight of that monster. It's humongous and so powerful! Thanks for the very interesting post. Wow.

B Squared said...

Nice story.

Saretta said...

Quando dici che si sposta, vuoi dire da solo? Cioè, con la marea, liberamente? E non sbatte contro le altre cose? Scusami se faccio una domanda scema! :-)

Fio said...

Interessante. Grazie per l'informazioni non raggiungibili in guida turistica :)

rob said...

Saretta: come da solo? :) la gru è fissata ad una chiatta che ha due motori e due timoni azionati dai membri dell'equipaggio.

m_m said...

Very interesting! Great capture!