BIMCO reports on new developments affecting the IMSBC Code - Bauxite Cargoes

BIMCO reports on new developments affecting the IMSBC Code - Bauxite Cargoes

Overview

BIMCO started reporting from 30 September 2020,  a series of articles, informing members of what to expect in the revised International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code ( Amendment 05-19), which wlll come into force on 1 January 2021. This is the 2nd article of the series. Today, BIMCO reports on the changes made to the " Bauxite" cargoes in the IMSBC Code.

This is BIMCO’s 2nd news piece reporting on new developments affecting the IMSBC Code. Today, we focus on bauxite cargoes and the new criteria distinguishing a bauxite cargo that may liquefy (Group A) from one that will not (Group C). 

The  work of the Global Bauxite Working Group culminated into the revision of the Group C bauxite schedule and a new Group A bauxite fines schedule, together with a new testing procedure developed just for bauxite cargoes.

Some notable developments in the new Amendment 05-19 of the IMSBC Code relating to bauxite cargoes are as follows:

  1. The particle size distribution (PSD) formula is the new criteria that distinguishes a Group A bauxite cargo from a Group C one
  2. When PSD can be irrelevant
  3. When a Group A bauxite can become a Group C bauxite cargo
  4. New testing procedure for bauxite cargoes

PSD criteria and Group A and C bauxite cargoes

A bauxite cargo will be classified as Group A if it has the following PSD formula:

.1 more than 30% of fine particles less than 1 mm (D30 < 1 mm); and
.2 more than 40% of particles less than 2.5 mm (D40 < 2.5 mm).

The Group C bauxite cargo schedule has been revised to include the above PSD criteria.

A bauxite cargo can only be classified as Group C under any of the 4 scenarios:

  • It has 30% or less of fine particles less than 1 mm (D30 ≥ 1 mm);
  • It has 40% or less of particles less than 2.5 mm (D40 ≥ 2.5 mm);
  • It has both of the above;
  • freely draining cargo (see "PSD irrelevant" below) 

Freely draining cargo - PSD irrelevant 

The PSD is irrelevant if the shipper is able to provide the master with a certificate, in accordance with the result of the test approved by the competent authority of the port of loading, stating that the moisture of the cargo freely drains from the cargo so that the degree of saturation is not liable to reach 70% (“the certificate”).  When such a certificate is produced, the bauxite cargo can be classified as a Group C bauxite cargo.  

When a Group A bauxite can become a Group C bauxite cargo

Even if a Group A cargo meets the PSD criteria as set out in the Group A bauxite schedule, it can still be classified as a Group C if the shipper is able to provide the master with the certificate as mentioned above.  

New testing Procedure for Bauxite

A new testing procedure developed just for bauxite cargoes can be found in Appendix 2 (Laboratory test procedures, associated apparatus and standards) of the new Amendment 05-19. It is called the modified Proctor/Fageberg test procedure for bauxite.

This new procedure works as follows:

  • The transportable moisture limit (TML) of a cargo is taken as equal to the critical moisture content at 80% degree of saturation where the optimum moisture content (OMC) of the bauxite tested occurs at saturation levels greater than or equal to 90%.
  • The TML of a cargo is taken as equal to the critical moisture content at 70% degree of saturation where the OMC of the bauxite occurs at saturation levels less than 90%.
  • Where moisture freely drains from the sample such that the test sample compaction curve cannot extend to or beyond 70% saturation, the test is taken to indicate a cargo where water passes easily through the spaces between particles. Therefore, the cargo is not liable to liquefy.

Even though this is a new procedure, section 8 of the IMSBC Code stipulates that it is ultimately the competent authority in the country of origin of the cargo that determines the procedure for testing of moisture content and TML of a cargo. Only in the absence of such test procedures, the Appendix 2 test procedures as appropriate for the cargo in question are recommended. 

BIMCO online Solid Bulk Cargo Database

To view the new and revised requirements of the bauxite cargo entries in the IMSBC Code, please go to our online Solid Bulk Cargo Database and click on the following links:

Members can also view the current bauxite Group C entry and Bauxite Fines under Amendment 04-17 or look at our cargo database section showing the list of cargoes under both Amendments. 

Related cargo news 

 

Ai Cheng Foo-Nielsen
in Copenhagen, DK

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