Dredging means the process of removing accumulated sediment from the bottom or banks of bodies of water, including rivers, lakes, or streams. Dredges are specialized pieces of equipment that create a vacuum to suck up and pump out the unwanted sediment and debris.
Many companies use water dredging services to help with industrial and construction projects. Because dredging can assist with many different business sectors, it has many different industrial functions, including:
- Excavating: Sediment removal plays an important role in the preparation for construction projects such as bridges, docks, and piers by performing the necessary underwater excavation work.
- Reconfiguring for larger ships: By deepening and widening a waterway, dredging can make it passable for larger cargo vessels, which can have a positive economic impact. Dredging waterways can also help ensure boats can still pass through during low tide, creating longer windows for docking.
- Gathering construction materials: The sediment removal process is sometimes used to gather sand, gravel, and other debris used to make concrete for construction projects.
- Cleaning canals: Canals experience heavy traffic that can cause a build-up of sediment and other debris. Dredging canals can clear unwanted sediment to create better waterways for all kinds of boats.
- Mining for precious metals: In certain bodies of water, the sediment can contain traces of precious metals such as gold and diamonds. Dredging can aid in excavating this mineral-filled sediment.