Torness Power Station – Thrust Block Strengthening, UK

Synopsis:
Preliminary and detailed design of carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) composite strengthening and site inspection
Contractor:
Makers UK
End Client:
British Energy

During replacement of a valve on an intake pipeline, a large reinforced concrete thrust block was to be subjected to a design force of 120 tonnes. An assessment of the element’s structural capacity raised concerns about the adequacy of the steel reinforcement to resist the force.

Tony Gee proposed a solution reinforcing the block with a CFRP composite bonded to the external tensile faces. Using the wet lay-up technique, up to four layers of carbon fibre were aligned in a quadraxial fashion, each layer being impregnated with a low viscosity epoxy resin.

The CFRP composite design overcame the difficulties that would have been encountered installing conventional heavy steel props. In addition to providing a safer solution at lower cost, the CFRP composite can remain in place with no impact on the available working space for future maintenance.

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 Torness Power Station