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Moves 50t nuclear flasks in tight spaces

25 January 2013

Engineers at a nuclear power station in Dumfriesshire are using electric-operated pedestrian tugs to assist in the movement of nuclear flasks, a critical stage in the decommissioning of the site. The tugs have provided

Engineers at a nuclear power station in Dumfriesshire are using electric-operated pedestrian tugs to assist in the movement of nuclear flasks, a critical stage in the decommissioning of the site. The tugs have provided a cost effective solution, moving flasks in confined spaces and reducing the risk of handlingrelated injuries.

Chapelcross, a four-reactor nuclear power station with eight 30MW turbines, has been undergoing decommissioning since 2004.Magnox North is responsible for day-today operation of the site under contract to the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.

Two MasterMover MT20/1500 pedestrian tugs are used in two different reactor chambers to pull heavy nuclear flasks from reactors to flask handling bays. The flasks, which contain spent nuclear fuel, act as shipping containers for transporting the active nuclear materials.

The MasterTug can pull, push and steer wheeled loads up to 15,000 kg, sufficient to move flask and bogie along guided rails. The MT20 gets the traction it needs using a coupling system to transfer load weight to the drive wheel.

MasterMover devised a special coupling system between the MT20 and flask bogie, which enables the machine to be connected and disconnected safely.
 
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