Supporting Hinkley Point C
We’ve been supporting the teams at Hinkley Point C for several years, bringing some of the project’s largest critical assets to the construction site. We’re thrilled to be part of this strong, locally-focused supply chain – over 60% of Hinkley Point C’s construction costs are being spent on UK-based providers delivering the assets, skills and expertise for the future.
Reflecting our commitment to work ‘better, together’ as part of the Hinkley team, this project culminated in a real honour for Osprey – we were a finalist in HPC’s Excellence Awards 2019.
John O’ Connor, our Commercial Director:
“Specialist logistics need strong relationships with multiple stakeholders. Accurate planning is essential, complex routes require feasibility checks and modelling, which allows us to plan every millimetre of the route – moving critical items for major projects brings great responsibility. We have to bring many factors together in dynamic environments, to be successful. A ‘right first time’ approach is vital for protecting the equipment and meeting programme. The UK’s nuclear supply chain is continually improving its approach to construction logistics. We deliver the most value when we’re engaged by the project early, and we’re pleased to say we’re helping to define those new solutions alongside key projects, and for our clients.”
EVOLVING NUCLEAR LOGISTICS
While the transition to cleaner energy is well underway, there’s still a need to renew Britain’s current industrial capability. This means a greater focus on modular construction and emerging technology, delivered efficiently to provide low carbon electricity that heats our homes and helps to run our businesses. Here in Somerset, EDF is building the first new nuclear power station we’ve had in Britain for over 20 years – Hinkley Point C (HPC). The scale and diversity of contractors delivering £100’s of million of contracts together is impressive.
Osprey is one of many UK contractors working on the project. Our team is constantly accruing and sharing valuable experience that can benefit others. It’s part of our commitment to provide added value and deliver safely every time. Shared learning is embedded in our project culture.
Moving critical equipment poses unique challenges in terms of specialist logistics. We applied our experience from other sectors to HPC, and to other new nuclear projects. Quality and safety are key, but what underpins our work is a practical and collaborative approach that’s driven by our people. The same was true when we recently delivered HPC’s tunnel boring machines (TBMs) to site.
It was vital to deliver on time, to plan logistics and recommend the right route – enabling the TBMs manufacturers to construct them ‘as big as possible’- reducing site construction time and risk. Osprey provided early input to help these decisions and achieve the best outcomes. Following our delivery, the TBMs were fully assembled ready to excavate two 3.5km intake tunnels (bringing cold water from the Bristol Channel into the power station), and a 1.8km outfall tunnel. In total, the assembled TBMs weigh around 1,500 tonnes each.
ROUTE ANALYSIS EXPERIENCE AND INSIGHT
We were confident our previous experience with the project would let us create the best logistics plan to deliver safely. As a local expert with strong stakeholder relationships, we quickly established a temporary Muster Port facility to receive the TBMs, working alongside our partner Bristol Port Company. The TBMs were unloaded from the delivery vessel using our heavy lift cranes, while the onward barge delivery and final road moves were optimised to meet programme.
We’ve been providing similar multi-year support during the build of HPC’s new 500m aggregates jetty. The new marine facility expanded capability to receive nuclear grade aggregates direct to site, meaning heavy goods vehicles could be removed from the local road network.
We used our equipment to move thousands of tonnes of steelwork, including huge fender files. Our SPMTs also moved the 200-tonne luffing gantry to the installation jack-up vessel – but not all our work is heavy lifting. We also provided Port Agency services to manage vessel movements and Customs clearance and import licencing for equipment arriving from all over the world. Having these capabilities in-house meant offshore construction could continue uninterrupted round the clock.
For the people living closest to major construction sites, like HPC, seeing critical items being moved can be an impressive sight. As a contractor, we represent the project, so it’s important all our work with the public is positive and considerate.
John O’ Connor, our Commercial Director:
“Our local knowledge and our relationships with road authorities, marine authorities, and the Site Operations Freight team at Hinkley meant we could arrange the delivery of the project at short notice, meeting critical just-in-time delivery schedules.
Working closely with HPC, Herrenknecht and Balfour Beatty teams, we jointly planned and solved challenges so that the TBMs could be delivered with minimum disruption to local residents. It is vital to be a good neighbour to maintain positive local relationships. The end result is hugely satisfying for everyone involved.”
Tom Barrett, HPC Project Manager Tunnels:
“Working alongside Osprey and Balfour Beatty, we’re creating shared knowledge and expertise that can be used for future works at HPC – it’s a particularly effective chain of communication thanks to regular contact with all Tier contractors.”