Relocation of a power plant from Italy to Ghana
Location: Italy–Ghana (6,600 km)
Execution time: 4+15 months
Number of containers: 300, 36 of them oversized
Lifting capacity: in Italy – 800 t, in Ghana – 500 t
Heaviest element: 180 t
The project involved the relocation of two separate 50 megawatt power plants from various locations in Italy to Ghana. The whole undertaking was an ambitious project, as within the works conducted, two separate power plants had to be reassembled, integrated and calibrated as one, comprehensive power plant. The transport was divided into two stages. The first stage included transportation by road, while the second covered freight transport.
Ghana due to insufficient road infrastructure, especially for oversize transport. Moreover, Ghana is a relatively dangerous country, especially during the night and thus it was crucial to not only secure the safety of the equipment, but first and foremost, of the staff. For this reason, over 30 local employees were employed who knew the specifics of the local region, without whom such an effective implementation of a project could hardly be possible
PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED AND HOW THEY WERE SOLVED
The assembly process of 180 t boilers was possible only with the use of a heavy-lifting capacity crane, however, in Ghana there was only one such device. Thankfully, it was possible to transport it and make an extensive use of its capabilities. It was also the only crane that could be used due to limited space (no possibility to use multiple cranes at once). An additional difficulty was caused by the fact that it is not an easy job to buy lacking materials time-effectively in most African countries, such as cables or structural steel. Therefore, in a situation where one of the materials’ stock was out (which is normal during the relocation process, as it is very hard to accurately plan the usage of single-use materials), it turned out necessary to order them from India.
The project was delayed due to the problems with construction of a new power plant’s building in Ghana, constructed by a local construction company. Moreover, it was impossible to unload heavy elements (most of them weighted over 100 tons) directly to a new building without the storage on the way. Such a storage, needed for overweighed parts, caused additional costs, but was obligatory, because such elements can only be discharged on a stable, robust surface. This case shows how important the timely work on the client’s side is. Building a new facility on time would allow the implementation of the classical Foundation to Foundation formula, which would speed up the execution time and reduce project costs.
– Vinod Sharma, Managing Director, Sharma Fabricators and Erectors Ltd.