The SGC 250 has been developed specially for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power project in Somerset. It will be working for the Bylor joint venture of Bouygues Travaux Publics and Laing O'Rourke Construction on a four-year contract worth £20m.
The SGC (Sarens Giant Crane) 250 has a maximum lifting capacity of 3,000 tonnes and a maximum load moment of 250,000 tonne-metres.
The crane is the fourth generation of the SGC series. It has a maximum boom length of 160 metres and it can be equipped with or without a jib. It can operate on a ring or on straight rails.
At Hinkley Point the SGC 250 will travel along six kilometres of rail that is being laid for it. This means that it can travel between three different lift locations without the need for disassembly or re-assembly.
The SGC 250 will be mobilised overland from Ghent to a nearby lay down yard before it is shuttled to the project site. An estimated 280 trucks will be required to deliver the entire SGC, though at the moment the narrow lanes leading to the site only allow 10 trucks per day.
At Hinkley Point C the crane will lift components ranging from 50 tonnes to 1,150 tonnes at radii of up to 165 metres. It will pick up and install prefab concrete elements, steel structures, and reactor equipment directly from each prefabrication position. A second crane, a 600-tonne class Terex Demag CC 2800, will assist as a rigging crane.
There are many ways of defining the size of a crane; the basis of Sarens' claim for world's biggest here it is not yet clear. ALE’s AL.SK190, used by Keltbray on the Earls Court demolition project in London last year (pictured below), boasts a lifting capacity of 4,300 tonnes, a load moment of 196,000 tonne-metres and a maximum boom height of almost 200 metres (although it was rigged with only 120 metres at Earls Court).
ALE also has larger SK350 and SK700 iterations of this lifting machine. The AL.SK350 has a lifting capacity of 5,000 tonnes and a load moment of 354,000 tonne-metres. There are also designs for doubling it up to make the SK700, with two winches and booms in parallel lifting 8,000 tonnes with a load moment of 708,000 tonne-metres.