Large lifts go live

You may have seen a blue and yellow crane tower high above Hinkley Point C...

Big Carl, the world’s largest land-based crane, is now fully constructed and has made its first move across the Hinkley Point C construction site.

The SGC-250 (Sarens Giant Crane) is a lattice-boom ring crane and the only one in the world capable of moving fully rigged from one lifting position to another. That’s made possible by two seperate sets of bogeys: one that allows it to rotate 360° and another for travelling on the 220m rail tracks between the lift locations.

The crane, which was purpose-built to help with the heavy lifting on site, became operational in September. It will remain on the project for at least the next four years.

Following lessons learned from Flamanville 3, Hinkley Point C’s sister project in France, the reactors’ steel containment liner structures are being prefabricated in weatherproof bunkers. Big Carl will play a key part in the heavy lifting on site, and will lift items out of the bunkers and into their final destination. The crane will also be vital in the upcoming dome lift.