The Erith Group has carried out the controlled demolition, using explosive techniques, of three heat recovery steam generators, their chimneys and drum houses at Killingholme A Power station in the north of England.

Erith killingholme

Killingholme A’s heat recovery steam generators and their chimneys had been part of the local scenery for more than 20 years

The heat recovery steam generators and their iconic 70 m (230 ft) tall white chimneys have overlooked the Humber estuary towards the city of Hull since 1994. They were constructed from a steel framed superstructure base, supporting top hung boilers, chimneys and a substantial drum house.

Erith designed, engineered and enabled a pre-weakening sequence working hand in hand with Swanton Consulting to verify the sequence. This enabling a safe and managed deliberate collapse mode using explosives, provided by a specialist supplier to the group.

The entire structure was monitored during the sensitive pre-weakening by a specially installed monitoring system that linked with prisms adhered to the superstructure.

This system enabled Erith’s demolition team to be informed to movements and trends during pre-weakening, ensuring safer and sensitive control of the 5,000 t steel superstructure. This innovative system is believed to be the first of its kind to be used when preparing structures for demolition by explosives.

A support team of sentries, supervisors and operatives enabled clearance of the structure and the site as planned for the spectacular explosive event, which was executed to plan and resulted in the safe collapse of the structure as engineered.

Surrounding the site are two petrol refineries, an operational power station, an off-shore wind farm power management facility and two car import parking facilities which hold several thousand cars. All have all had specific requirements relating to the blow down. Erith said that careful planning and management leading up to the day with the stakeholders also enabled the event to be executed with no issues.

Benjamin Dove Seymour, client at Killingholme A, said: “The safe delivery of this successful event demonstrates the Erith group’s continued focus on providing engineered solutions to complex demolition scenarios within heavy industrial power generating facilities, and reflects the well planned and professional approach to such works by the entire Erith business.”

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