Supply chain management at Bogibeel Bridge
India recently welcomed one of its biggest landmarks! The country’s longest rail-cum-road bridge—Bogibeel Bridge over river Brahmaputra in Assam—was recently inaugurated, after having encountered several engineering and other challenges, almost 22 years after its foundation stone was laid in January 1997.
HCC follows the Just-In-Time (JIT) inventory system where it produces or acquires materials and products as per demand. This is a key component of its supply chain. At the Bogibeel Bridge project, the team used a combination of rail and road transport to deliver 80,000 tonne of steel plates from various parts of the country to the remote project site in Assam. The orders for extra wide plates were placed in advance as per the design of the superstructure. In this way, the team avoided any possible mismatch of material and ensured qualitative and timely execution of the job.
“The steel used in the construction of the bridge is special grade, confined to E410CBC,” says RVR Kishore, Project Director, HCC. Steel plates and sections were procured mainly from three sources: JSPL, Essar and SAIL. Of these 80,000 mt, about 20,000 mt (25 per cent scope) was categorised as ODC (over dimension cargo) and attracted special measures for transport to the project site from the sources in Hazira and Angul.
A procurement plan was made according to minimum order quantity required thickness-wise, also estimating future market price trends as the order lot sizes range from 3,500 mt to 10,000 mt. Also, for the construction of the bridge, Kishore adds, “Plasma cutting machines for the cutting of material, automated-box making machines, levelling machines and robotic welding machines were imported from Canada.”