Revolving island fills oil tankers
A giant filling station rests on the bottom of the Mediterranean in 100 feet of water a mile off the coast of Africa.
The big man-made island moors huge supertankers bow to the wind. A revolving boom permits full-circle movement of the ship in high winds and heavy seas as oil flows aboard through a submerged arm.
The tubular-steel supporting structure is more than 14 stories tall and 132 feet in diameter. The loading aim, 577 feet long, extends from the island to the side of a tanker where it's connected by hoses to the ship's cargo tanks.
Crude oil from tanks on shore is pumped to the island through a mile-long underwater pipeline.
Standard Oil of New Jersey had the complex 2,800-ton installation assembled on a barge on the ways of Avondale Ship-yards in New Orleans, then towed it 5.900 miles to its affiliate, Esso Standard Libya, at Marsa el Brega.
The trip took 67 days.