ALE uses strand jacks to heighten wind tower

By Christian Shelton13 November 2018

Heavy lift and transportation specialist ALE provided a bespoke engineering solution to heighten the prototype of one the world’s highest wind towers: the Nabralift self-erecting tower. The job also involved transportation of the 450 tonne wind tower, in Navarra, Spain.

The Nabralift self-erecting tower, designed by Spanish wind turbine component manufacturer Nabrawind Technologies, measures 160 metres high – making it one of the tallest wind towers in the world. Nabrawind is working on developing solutions for installation of wind towers without the use of cranes, whatever the hub height. According to Nabrawind, by negating the need for specialist assembly equipment, the cost of installation can be reduced.

To transport the wind tower, ALE used 12 SPMT axle lines. Once in position, it used three strand jack units to heighten it.

“It is fantastic to have been given the opportunity to work on this unique project and showcase our capabilities within the onshore wind market,” commented ALE project engineer David Arias Blanco. “Recognising our track record in Spain, the client was confident we could supply the complex solution necessary. By providing this customised solution, our client can now have the means of developing onshore wind farms in the most cost- and time-effective method possible. This is game-changing technology, specifically for those located on difficult-to-reach islands or mountainous sites. From our findings, we are already developing engineering processes to fulfil the requirements of future large-scale installations with an aim to develop two towers a week.”

The project was completed in September 2018 and ALE said discussions are ongoing regarding future use of this prototype and methodology.

A video of the heightening work can be seen on Nabrawind’s website at www.nabrawind.com/nabralift on its Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/i/status/1044350638480601089 or on Vimeo at www.vimeo.com/294323149

Image 1_ self-erecting wind tower in Spain

Nabrawind’s self-erecting wind tower in Spain

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