June 30 - Holtec International has awarded a contract to Enerpac, which will see the company design, fabricate and commission a 170-tonne capacity vertical cask transporter for use in the nuclear industry.

The transporter will combine the lifting capability of a hydraulic gantry with the flexibility of a self-propelled modular transporter (SPMT), says Enerpac.

The vertical cask transporter aims to provide Holtec, which is a global supplier of nuclear equipment and handling systems within the energy industry, with a system for safely handling and transporting casks at a spent nuclear fuel storage facility.

According to Enerpac, the wheeled cask transporter's modular assembly design has a number of key features, including normal steer, 90 degree turn, crab and auto-rotation turn and drive capability, as well as an innovative cab design allowing the operator to face the direction of travel.

Enerpac says that safe handling of the casks is assured by the machine's drop prevention system and integrated cask restraint - a hydraulically operated clamp that secures the cask for transport.

"The vertical cask transporter is the ideal solution for moving spent nuclear fuel storage casks that need to be lifted and manoeuvred on site," commented Mart Hinnen, director projects and engineering, Enerpac.

"It is especially suited to handling casks where space restrictions rule out the use of a crane, or if a completely integrated lift and transport system is needed."