March 22 - Global heavy lift and transport company ALE has successfully jacked, skidded and loaded five redundant boilers from the UK's inaugural nuclear power station prior to onward transportation.
The project, which ALE says is one of a kind, will see the first heat exchangers from a UK site transported overseas for recycling.
ALE worked together with Magnox, Low Level Waste Repository (LLWR), the Nuclear Decommissioning Agency (NDA), and Studsvik specialist metal treatment contractor, to ensure the successful transportation of the former steam boilers, from their location in Berkley power station to the recycling facility in Sweden.
The boilers weighing 300 tonnes each, measuring 22 m long, and 5 m wide, were transported in three separate moves from the former power station which ceased generation in 1989 and is now owned by the NDA.
Nigel Kitt business development manager at ALE said ""The project is a huge step forward for the future of nuclear decommissioning, and ALE is proud to be a part of it.
Through careful planning and collaborative working relationships with all parties involved, we have together ensured the success of this momentous project, and indeed hope to see more recycling projects of this kind within the industry."
The first move ALE performed involved the use of an 18-axle conventional trailer, two push-pull heavy ballast tractors and various other support and escort vehicles. Utilising a further 36 axles of conventional drawbar trailers, connected to four push pull heavy ballast tractors, ALE completed the transport of the remaining four boilers, two at a time.
The boilers were transported from the power station through Berkeley town centre to Sharpness docks, where they were rolled onto a specialist vessel which then transported them via the Severn to Avonmouth.
From Avonmouth the boilers will be transported to a sea going vessel to make the final journey to Nyköping in Sweden.
Once the boilers reach Sweden they will be smelted and up to 90 percent of the metal will be returned for use in the UK market.