The Project:

Since 1990, Foss has transported 30 million of tons of concentrated ore for Red Dog Mine – a zinc mine 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle. We developed customized self-loading barges to transfer the ore to bulk carriers from the shallow-draft port. Working in harsh weather, we developed the world’s first and only roadstead loading of dry bulk cargo.

Services Provided:

  • Naval Architecture
  • Marine Engineering
  • Construction Support
  • Lighterage and Bulk Handling


  • Developed and built self-loading barges to pick up the ore stored in an 11-story-high building on shore
  • In 2009, Foss lightered 1.37 million tons of ore to 25 ships, and in 2010, the company lightered 1.40 million tons of ore to 27 ships. The record was set in 2007, when Foss lightered 1.46 million tons
  • Developed the world’s first open-roadstead loading of dry bulk cargo to enable loading, even in challenging weather, during the 90-100 day season
  • Navigate tugs through ice upon arrival at Red Dog in late June or early July. The tugs depart in October, before the port completely freezes over
  • The bulk carriers that carry the ore anchor in deep water during harsh weather conditions