Renewable energy is growing not only here in Ireland, with wind energy leading the way, but globally. 2017 will mark 25 years since the first Irish wind farm started generating electricity in Co. Mayo, and today there are over 200 wind farms operating in Ireland, with the wind energy sector employing over 3,400 people nationwide, a figure which is projected to grow to over 8,000 by 2020.
Wind farm developments are creating significant geotechnical challenges, particularly in terms of efficient construction in often challenging terrain. Turbines requires concrete, often a lot of it from the turbine bases, permanent meteorological mast bases, building foundations to concrete bunds. In many cases the access can pose challenges to putting in batching plants, this is why the mobile batching plant has been such a success within the renewable energy sector.
Below is a case study featuring the Rapidbatch 120 supplied by Rapid International, and of which Ormonde Machinery is the Irish dealer.
“Rapid International Ltd recently supplied their new mobile concrete batching plant, the Rapidbatch 120 to Essex-based civil engineering firm and contractors CA Blackwell. The mobile plant enabled CA Blackwell to carry-out production of concrete at the remote location of the Clyde Wind Farm in Scotland.
The Clyde Wind Farm is situated between Abington and Moffat in Scotland covering an area of 47.5sq km and is divided by the M74 motorway. CA Blackwell, were appointed as the main Contractor of the south section of the site in South Lanarkshire, consisting of 52 wind turbine and is part of Europe’s largest approved onshore wind farm. The mobile batching plant allows them to produce concrete for the turbine bases with each base requiring 360m³ of concrete. Steve Johnson regional director of Blackwell spoke of his satisfaction with the mobile batching plant: “We have been delighted with the Rapidbatch 120 from Rapid International. It has been ideal for this project and the support provided by Rapid has been second to none.”
The mobile batching plant manufactured by Rapid International, is the first of its kind in the UK to be purchased by a contractor. The plant allows consistent high output and quality concrete to be produced. The batching plant is fully mobile making it ideal for projects in remote areas as concrete is mixed on-site reducing transport and installation costs. The Rapidbatch includes Rapid’s very own 3 cubic metre twin shaft mixer which produces a very high quality homogeneous concrete mix. Short mixing times allows for increased production, up to 120 m³ of concrete per hour. The Rapidbatch 120 has a compact modular arrangement that can be fully erected within only 1 working day.
The Rapidbatch120 has also been successfully supplied to Lafarge UK and used for the construction of the Milford Haven Power Station in South Wales.”
See Rapidbatch 120 in action: