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Contractors World  -
2014 Vol 5 No 5
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Access for the world’s largest solar power facility - continued

The three towers ready to be commissioned Photo: DiverDave

The three towers ready to be commissioned  Photo: DiverDave

The Alimak hoists were chosen to support the project because of their proven reliability to operate in harsh environments, removing some of the risk that Bechtel had to manage to install and start up this new technology.

Video showing preparation and construction works.

Source: Bechtel Corp:
© 2014 Bechte



World’s largest solar power facility

Ivanpah Solar Power Facility is the world’s largest solar thermal power plant currently in operation.  The project is located in Ivanpah Dry Lake, California on more than 1,600 hectare (4,000 acres).

The power will be created by using over 173,500 software controlled heliostats (mirrors) that will track the sun in two dimensions and reflect sunlight to the three boilers that sit atop the almost 140 m (450’) tall towers.

The high temperature steam will then be piped from the boilers to a turbine were electricity is generated.

NRG Energy, Inc. through its wholly owned subsidiary NRG Solar, LLC, announced earlier this year that the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System is now operational and delivering solar electricity to California customers.

At full capacity, the facility’s trio of 450-foot (137 m) high towers produces a gross total of 392 megawatts (MW) of solar power.

The scheme is a joint effort between NRG, Google, and BrightSource Energy. Bechtel is the engineering, procurement, and construction contractor on the project. The project received a $1.6 billion loan guarantee from the US Department of Energy’s Loan Programs Office.

Ivanpah, which accounts for nearly 30 percent of all solar thermal energy currently operational in the US, is the largest solar project of its kind in the world.

The project is the first to use BrightSource’s innovative solar power tower technology to produce electricity. It includes heliostats that follow the sun’s trajectory, solar field integration software and a solar receiver steam generator.

Since breaking ground in October 2010, the project has created thousands of jobs and, at the peak of construction, employed nearly 3,000 site workers who completed more than 8.35 million man-hours.

Bechtel built and procured Ivanpah’s solar field, which includes 173,500 heliostats that follow the sun’s trajectory, solar-field-integration software, and a solar-receiver steam generator. The team exceeded its goal of installing 500 heliostats per day and achieved more than 800 heliostat installations per day at peak construction.

Bechtel designed, procured, and built the project’s trio of 450-foot high power towers and successfully placed 2,200-ton boilers on top of each tower. In addition, the team executed the project safely, working 31 months and 7.3 million hours without a lost-time accident.

Alimak Hek

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