The lock gates at Incheon port, by Mr. Nam,
In the summer of 1973, we Trans-Asia Engineers (TAE) at the Building 1510, Yongsan Garrison, had an engineering contract for the field quality control of the Dock #2 Construction at Incheon Port where the ocean going military transport of the United States ships military supplies and materiel from the CONUS and unload them at the Incheon dock.
The project was then financed by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the design was done by a marine specialty firm in the United States. We in Korea were responsible to control the quality of the cement, reinforcing bars, aggregates, sand and its mixing rate, among others. TAE had a Soils/material Testing Laboratory, the first and only civilian operated laboratory equipped with a various machines and equipment for the testing of the construction materials and soils analysis in Korea. The lab performance was conducted strict in accordance with the standard requirements of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and the American Concrete Institute, and so on.
A civil engineer of TAE named Edgar G. Kelly and I were responsible in the field to check the quality of the mountains of concrete to be poured into dock construction and had taken beam and cylinder samples and brought to the lab for compression and bending tests. Some compression test results, as I dimly remember now, had failed to meet the standard requirements and we have had some arguments with the contractors in the field.
I’ve been curious and wanted to see the current conditions of the lock gates and docks, and visited the port yesterday. The lock gate zone was a security area and I was asked to present my IDs and to answer some questions.
When I said that I was one of the quality control inspectors during its construction, a man invited me to get in his car and we drove around the two locks and gates. The whole system seemed in very good working order and the area have been well maintained.
At Incheon harbor, there is a maximum 10 meters (33 ft.) difference in the range of tides caused by the different locations of the moon, so that the outer sea level changes every hour. The two horizontally running exterior and interior water gates
raise and lower the water level where ship is floating in the lock so that it can enter into and egress from the inner port where the water level is maintained at the high tide. There are multiple locks in the Panama Canal.
The large passenger ship in the lock now entering into the inner port (in the photo) is China’s Weidong Ferry. She appears to be empty of Chinese passengers as I noticed there were no visitors standing on the decks to view the Korean harbor.
President Xi is discouraging his people’s visit to South Korea in an effort to pressure on the THAAD deployment in the country by the U.S. Military.
The dark shades of the current geopolitical rows appear everywhere.
By Nam Sang-so, a former architect/engineer of TAE. April 23, 2017