HEAVY DUTY INDUSTRIAL CARTS FOR NUCLEAR ENERGY POWER PLANTS


Posted on July 20, 2020

Hundreds of new nuclear power and research reactors under construction and retired from operation require significant resources for material handling and logistics in nuclear power sector. Decommissioning nuclear power plant is a lengthy and expensive process requiring extremely high levels of security with strict rules and standards involving clean-up of radioactively contaminated infrastructure and safe removal of radioactive fuel.

Since its foundation Morello developed plenty of projects using customized heavy-duty industrial carts for nuclear decommissioning projects in European countries. Since strict requirements and standards require every aspect and detail of the equipment to checked and documented, Morello is equipped to provide all required supporting services and documentation. Structured project management is provided going beyond equipment design and construction.

Safety and security are the key factors guiding all operations in the nuclear industry – this rule is perfectly demonstrated in our case of nuclear power plant decommissioning in Latina, region of Lazio, Italy. This nuclear plant operated from 1963 until 1987 is in the first phase of decommissioning process to be completed in 2027. Morello made detailed offers for Sogin, the company responsible for decommissioning project with two operational requirements for heavy materials handling. First is movement of shell casings weighing 120 tons and measuring 5.6 x 3.4 metres. These were to be moved from an external location into a purpose-built warehouse where the shell casings would be cut and sectioned into smaller pieces for disposal. Second one concerns movement of containers holding contaminated waste and weighing up to 20 tons. These containers were to be moved within the plant and lifted to a higher floor level.

Nuclear site in Latina is located in a seismic zone. Morello had to provide guarantees that the heavy transportation equipment was able to withstand possible earthquake tremors of various degrees. Morello proposed and built three industrial transfer carts to meet these strict requirements

For transportation of shell casings we designed customized battery-powered transport cart on wheels model SGAI-E VSP3 featuring special configuration with 32 super-elastic material wheels, equalizing mechanisms to guarantee floor contact of all 32 wheels. This solution provided perfect weight distribution followed by 4 electric traction motors with no maintenance requirement and wheel steering mechanism designed to avoid grinding of the wheels during wheel turning with Ackermann steering. A self-loading 130-ton capacity platform with electric motor utilized 8 cylinders built into the loading platform. SGAI model was supplied with laser scanners and secure stopping in case of obstacles being encountered in the cart’s path as well as with steel chassis frame on 4 supports for 10-ton weight designed to lift and move once the shell casings had been placed on top.

Shell Casings handling was performed by battery-powered Rail Guided Transport Cart SBA model with 130-ton load capacity supported by 8 double edged rail wheels for high precision positioning. Special rotating platform allowed shell casing positioning for cutting and sectioning appropriately.

Morello battery-powered rail guided transport Cart SBA-E model handled contaminated material. Equipped with numerous additional sensors and security controls for maximum operational safety, this customized rail cart was equipped with a risible platform to lift the containers using 4 cylinders with position and pressure sensors.

Design of these 3 industrial transfer carts was made to withstand seismic shocks demonstrated in detailed supporting documentation followed by significant quantity of technical documents from Morello, well beyond heavy industry general requirements to operate within a nuclear power.

There is advanced diagnostics on the HMI (human-machine interface) and the integrated IoT capabilities allow Morello to provide ongoing remote assistance where required. We ensure high level of performance, security and precision so important in material handling in nuclear energy sector and power plants. Our experience and expertise provide multinational industrial corporations in energy sector with the support and solutions for efficient and safe material handling.

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