7,000-yd. placement forms nuclear island at mega power plant site

Sources: Georgia Power, Atlanta; CP staff

A 41-hour pour has seen lead contractor Shaw Nuclear complete a 6-ft. thick basemat, approximately 250- x 160-ft. wide, to support the first new U.S. nuclear power unit in 30 years.

Concrete for the massive slab was produced at a twin central mixed plant Shaw Nuclear built on site, anticipating upwards of 500,000 yards’ output over a four- to five-year construction window. The new basemat serves as the nuclear island for Vogtle Unit 3, which along with Unit 4 is rising at the Georgia Power station near Waynesboro, Ga. Both nuclear islands’ full outlines have reached grade level, while the first Unit 3 containment vessel components are staged for installation once the concrete has cured. With 1,100-megawatt capacity each, the Westinghouse AP 1000 reactors are scheduled to begin operation by 2016.

“This historic moment marks yet another important milestone of the Vogtle expansion project and reflects the tremendous progress we’ve made at the site,” said Georgia Power Nuclear Development Executive Vice President Buzz Miller. He credits progress to the collaboration of a team including Georgia Power, Southern Nuclear, CB&I, and Westinghouse Electric Co., plus Units 3 & 4 co-owners Oglethorpe Power Corp., the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia, and Dalton Utilities.