Bauer Spezialtiefbau GmbH accepted an innovation prize in the construction process category at the recent Bauma industry show in Munich, Germany. The prize honored a piling project in the North Sea off Scotland.
The project was a joint effort between engineers at Bauer Spezialtiefbau and machinery subsidiary Bauer Maschinen, which designed and built an entirely new underwater drilling rig for deployment in a few months.
Bauer crews in the summer of 2011 sunk a pile into the North Sea bed to form the foundation base for a tidal turbine. The tidal field is a certified test for such projects aimed at generating renewable energy. The project, from design to reality, was performed under tight time constraints. Days were regimented, with time strictly allocated for testing, transportation of materials from Hamburg, Germany, to the U.K., transfer to the drilling location and the drilling phase itself.
The new-style rig was lowered to the sea bed during a period of relative tidal calm from a special ship. Multiple drive units held the ship in place with the help of GPS. Drilling was done with a roller bit and an air-lift system moved cuttings back to the surface. At a depth of 121 feet, the 75-foot long, 6-foot diameter monopile was compacted in a 36-foot rock socket with high-strength mortar. The pile can now support a one-megawatt turbine.
This is the third time Bauer Group has won Bauma’s innovation prize. Bauma, held every three years, is the world’s the largest construction machinery trade fair. The innovation prize is awarded in categories of machinery, components, construction process, research and design.
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