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Pearlson is Building All Four of The World's Biggest Shiplifts

ANI
ANI's shiplift (center right) is about to get bigger (Pearlson)

Published Feb 21, 2024 4:47 PM by The Maritime Executive

Miami-based Pearlson Shiplift has been having a lot of success in the defense market, and not just in the United States. It is now building the largest shiplift south of the equator and the four largest shiplifts anywhere, the firm claims.

On Wednesday, the company announced that it has secured a contract to upgrade and extend an existing Pearlson-designed shiplift facility at the Australian Naval Infrastructure (ANI) yard just outside Adelaide, Australia. The Australian government is making historic investments in its naval fleet, both surface combatants and submarines, and the new expansion contract will give ANI the largest shiplift in the Southern Hemisphere. 

Shiplifts are installed in a manner that allows the vessel to be transferred on and off to shore with relative ease. For repair work, a ship moved into the yard or into a covered building (typically with modular transporters). This means that if needed, the shipyard can handle as many vessels as it has room to park, and is not restricted by the availability of its drydock space.  

"It is quite amazing to realize our organization is building the four largest shiplift system drydocks in the world. ANI’s upgrade and extension joins recent Pearlson projects such as BAE Systems – Jacksonville Ship Repair, Fincantieri Marinette Marine, Austal, and more. The shipyard and maritime sectors continue to reaffirm Pearlson’s dominance in the dry-docking industry,” said Bryan Fraind, President of Pearlson Shiplift Corporation.

The latter three docks in this list all handle U.S. Navy vessels, and Pearlson has received recognition from the service's top leadership. 

"Their work in coordination with our Navy Facilities Engineering Command includes project development to address our need for expeditionary repair of both our forward deployed crewed and uncrewed systems," said Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro last week. "Our shipbuilders are also taking note."

Some of Pearlson's claims about its history and market share are disputed by a competitor, Syncrolift.