The largest module has been installed at the Vogtle 4 nuclear construction project in the US state of Georgia. Emplacement of the CA20 module marks the heaviest lift at the project so far this year.
Southern Company subsidiary Georgia Power said the CA20 module and sub-modules were assembled from prefabricated wall and floor sections within the modular assembly building at the Vogtle site. The completed CA20 module was installed within Vogtle 4`s nuclear island on 20 August. The three-hour operation involved the use of the world`s largest crawler crane to hoist the module, which weighs some 840 tonnes, into position.
The CA20 module comprises plant and equipment for used fuel storage, transmission, the heat exchanger and waste collection, among other things. The module - measuring 20 metres long, 14 metres wide and 20 metres high - is the largest component to be used in the construction of AP1000 units.
Over 1800 cubic yards (1376 cubic metres) of concrete will now be poured to fill the walls of the CA20 module.
Unit 4 is one of two Westinghouse AP1000 reactors under construction at Vogtle, joining two existing pressurized water reactors. Unit 3`s CA20 module was lifted into place in March 2014. That unit is expected to enter operation by the middle of 2019, with Vogtle 4 following by mid-2020.
Two AP1000s are also under construction at VC Summer in South Carolina. Construction began on both units in 2013, with unit 2 expected to enter operations in 2019 and unit 3 in 2020.
The first two of four AP1000 units under construction in China - Sanmen 1 and Haiyang 1 - are expected to begin operations before the end of 2016, with Sanmen 2 and Haiyang 2 scheduled to be in operation by the end of 2017.
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