Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Project Air Freight Forwarding Shipments Don't Come Much Bigger

Single Piece Weighs in at 85 Tonnes
Shipping News Feature
RUSSIA – As project air freight forwarding consignments go they don’t come much bigger than the turbine runner with tooling weighing 115 tonnes and destined for the Ust-Srednekanskaya hydroelectric power station which has just arrived safely at Sokol Airport in Magadan, Russia on board a Volga-Dnepr Airlines’ An-124-100 ‘Ruslan’ freighter. Preparations for the transportation of the huge 6 metre diameter turbine runner from St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport started in late 2015 in consultation with global power engineering company Power Machines which produced the runner, which alone weighs in at 85 tonnes, for the power station.

Volga-Dnepr has extensive experience of transporting radial-axial and adjustable-blade turbine runners on its fleet of An-124-100 freighters, and has developed its own tooling to be able to spread the weight of such extreme cargo loads throughout the cargo cabin floor of the aircraft. Based on the specific technical characteristics of the turbine runner, Volga-Dnepr’s engineers modified the tooling within 20 days to ensure the safety of the load. The runner was mounted inside the tailored frame at the Power Machines production site by Volga-Dnepr’s technical crew before it was delivered to Pulkovo Airport using a trailer.

The An-124-100’s technical crew assembled a special ramp extension with slide rails in order to load the 85-tonne structure aboard the aircraft. After placing the runner on the ramp extension the cargo was pulled inside the giant freighter using a winch and then firmly secured. The loading procedure took Volga-Dnepr’s engineers some 10 hours to complete, meeting the required deadline for the operation.

The turbine runner is for the hydroelectric unit No. 3 at Ust-Srednekanskaya hydroelectric power station, which is scheduled to commence operation in 2018. The power station will have an estimated 570 megawatt capacity and is located 217 kilometres down the Kolyma River from the current Kolymskaya HPS, which provides continuous electricity supplies in the Magadan region.

Photo: The giant turbine fits snugly into the aircraft.