Friday, June 14, 2013

Eurodeck weighbridges survived after massive explosion in Cyprus



Weightron Bilanciai Ltd (UK) - Eurodeck weighbridges ‘rise from the ashes’ after surviving massive explosion in Cyprus

Weightron Bilanciai’s Eurodeck weighbridge has built an enviable reputation for long term durability and reliability, working in the harshest of environments around the world.

However this credence was tested to the very limit in July 2011, when around 98 containers of confiscated Iranian explosives self-detonated at the Evangelos Florakis naval base in Southern Cyprus, killing 13 people and injuring dozens more.

The explosives had been stored on scrub land within the perimeter of the naval base since 2009, without, it would appear, little or no regard for safety. The huge blast, believed to have been triggered by a small brush fire, ripped through the naval base and severely damaged hundreds of nearby buildings, including the Vasiliko power station which is responsible for supplying over half of Cyprus’s electricity. The damage to the power station, where two Eurodeck weighbridges had been installed below large storage silos in 2009, was made worse by the ensuing fire.

As part of the rebuilding of the power station by Austrian power contractor ANDRITZ, Weightron engineers have now re-commissioned the weighbridges using the existing deck structures. Although the instrumentation and load cells suffered severe damage from the explosion and fire, the pit weighbridges themselves survived relatively unscathed, despite remaining flooded with water for several months. Once the pits had been drained, it was a straightforward task to replace the damaged stainless steel load cells and instrumentation. Calibration of the completed weighbridges was carried out without problem.

The modular design of the Eurodeck weighbridge means that it is ideal for export applications. The deck modules are specially designed to fit inside a standard open-top 40 foot shipping container for cost effective world-wide transportation. On arrival at site the 1.5 metre wide sections can be simply removed from the container and bolted side by side to form the standard size deck modules in standard lengths of 9, 15 and 18 metres, with capacities up to 80 tonnes. These can then be lowered onto the dummy load cells on the ready prepared foundations. The weighbridges can then be commissioned using the pre-calibrated live load cells and instrumentation, also shipped in the container.

The main structural beams of the Eurodeck, which support a robust durbar deck, run length ways, consistent with traffic flow and have sufficient depth so that they do not need stiffening plates. This gives a consistent, well-drained weighing surface, avoiding any build up of condensation. The unsupported span between these beams is only 165 mm, which means that with maximum loading in the centre of a standard module, there is minimum deflection.

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