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Magnox Winfrith Dragon – Nuclear Polar Crane Refurbishment

The decommissioning of a reactor and its supporting systems requires a high-integrity lifting solution to safely remove debris as the reactor is slowly taken down. At the Winfrith Magnox power station, the original polar crane sat in a confined space above the ‘Dragon’ reactor. However, the crane was neither designed nor suited to the task of decommissioning. SCX Special Projects was called in to refurbish and upgrade the polar crane, and to provide Winfrith with safe, reliable nuclear lifting.

The Challenge

SCX Special Projects’ expertise was called upon to refurbish a 25-tonne polar crane over the Dragon reactor at Winfrith Nuclear Power Station. The refurbishment would enable the crane to become a vital piece of equipment for decommissioning the facility, including the reactor itself.

The main challenge for SCX was to replace old equipment with new, while navigating the extremely
limited space over the reactor, with no other crane to utilise.

The Solution

SCX performed a full refurbishment of the crane, including: a structural analysis of the original polar crane bridge; engineering and installing a replacement 25-tonne SWL crab unit; adding an auxiliary 5-tonne hoist; replacing the polar travel drives; and upgrading the entire EC&I system.

The upgrades have given Winfrith a long-term nuclear lifting and handling solution capable of fulfilling its decommissioning plans safely, reliably and efficiently.

Technical Details

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