Update from Ivanpah – October 2012
Ivanpah Workers, Their Families, and Staff Celebrate Progress Made on the Project
Last month, Ivanpah engineering, procurement and construction contractor Bechtel welcomed more than 3,500 people to celebrate Family Day at the site. Open to all workers associated with the Ivanpah project, the event provided a rare opportunity for employees to show their loved ones the world’s largest concentrating solar plant under construction to their loved ones. View our video from Family Day and read our blog post for more details!
Ivanpah Featured in Smithsonian Magazine!
Grab a copy of the November issue of Smithsonian Magazine A stunning photo of the Ivanpah project is featured alongside a short article. Snapped by photographer Gilles Mingasson, the photo provides a unique close up aerial view of the Unit 1 power tower area surrounded by thousands of heliostats.
Construction of Ivanpah is 67 percent complete! The project continues to employ more than 2,100 construction workers and support staff, and remains on track to be completed in 2013.
In the Common Area, the Pad Bonding Buildings (PBBs) and the Heliostat Assembly Building (HAB) continue to operate above full production capacity, assembling more than 500 heliostats each day. As of early October, the team has installed over 117,000 steel pylons and 77,000 heliostats. The permanent administration building is now complete and is occupied by the operations staff. Southern California Edison completed the 115 kV interim interconnection and Kern River Gas Transmission completed the natural gas tie-in to Ivanpah.
In September, the solar field team successfully aimed three heliostats at the boiler protection panels (white area) of the Unit 1 tower, creating a visible spot on the panels (see photo at left). When the plant is operational, heliostats will be aimed at the black boiler panels that are comprised of many tubes containing water/steam.
Overall, nearly 50,000 pylons and 50,000 heliostats are installed in Unit 1. The solar field commissioning process continues with electricians wiring heliostats together and connecting them to the communication and power distribution units, or CPDU’s. The team is also busy calibrating individual heliostats with the BrightSource SFINCS (Solar Field Integrated Control System), the software that aims the heliostats at the tower with extreme accuracy.
In the Unit 1 power block area, boilermakers completed the installation and welding of boiler piping and erection of the wall panels. The team also successfully completed the critical hydrostatic test to confirm the integrity of the boiler by pressurizing the boiler with water to check for leaks. The next step in preparing the boiler for operation is to conduct a chemical cleaning of the boiler’s evaporator section.
On the ground, construction of the air-cooled condenser (ACC) continues with significant progress made on the main steam turbine exhaust duct and wall siding. The team continues installing the remaining “balance of plant” equipment in the power block area, such as water treatment tanks, piping, electrical breakers and transformers.
A view of Unit 1 (background) and the Unit 2 solar field (foreground) from the top of the Unit 2 tower.
In the Unit 2 power block area, boilermakers continue welding the interconnecting boiler pipe and wall panels. The hydrostatic test is scheduled to take place by the end of the year. On the ground, the construction of the ACC is ongoing, and the plant services building is complete. In the Unit 2 solar field, more than 56,000 pylons and 28,000 heliostats have been installed. The team initiated the cable installation work necessary to support wiring of the heliostats together and connect them to the CPDU’s.
In the Unit 3 power block area, boilermakers are now welding the interconnecting boiler pipe and wall panels. On the ground, construction continues on the ACC, the plant services building, and the auxiliary boiler. The steam turbine generator was delivered and aligned in early September.