By Nick Gilbert
Assessing of a 560-foot high heavy lift derrick, one of the biggest cranes in the world, will commence at the construction site of two new nuclear units 3 and 4 at Plant Vogtle.
The heavy lift derrick at Plant Vogtle stands 560 feet tall. (PRNewsFoto/Georgia Power)
The derrick, utilized to transport large components at the site of the first nuclear units built in the U.S. in 30 years, will be able to transport weights equal to five 747 jets across distances covering more than three and a half football fields in one lift. Besides, important components will start arriving at the site late in 2012 and early in 2013, of which the first will be a reactor vessel for unit 3. Condensers for unit 3 that were manufactured in Korea have already reached. Unit 3 is slated to go online during 2016 and unit 4 in 2017. A considerable amount of work has been completed at the site on turbine islands, nuclear towers and cooling islands.
Promotion of Vogtle 3 and 4 has generated plenty of job opportunities in Georgia, providing jobs to about 5000 persons during peak construction and generating 800 permanent jobs when the plant commences operations. After completion, the new units will have the capacity to generate enough electricity to cater to over 500,000 homes and business establishments in Georgia.
Southern Company is one of the country’s biggest generators of electricity. Southern Nuclear, an auxiliary of Southern Company, will be supervising the construction and will manage operations of the 1100-MW AP1000 units on behalf of Georgia Power and co-owners Oglethorpe Power Corporation, the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and Dalton Utilities. Georgia Power owns 45.7% of the units, with an official cost of $6.1 billion.