Leading civil engineering contractor Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK has invested in cutting edge production technology to supply quality-controlled concrete to the construction of the 54-turbine Clyde wind farm extension in Scotland.
The company has purchased a high capacity Simem MMX 5000 concrete batching plant which, in conjunction with a second plant from the existing Jones Bros fleet, enables the supply of more than 100m3 per hour of high specification concrete.
As in many of its other wind farm projects, site-based concrete production was the only viable solution to the Clyde contract’s requirement of circa 40,000m3 of concrete and provided valuable environmental benefits through significant road traffic reductions.
Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK is delivering the balance of plant contract as part of a joint venture with Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering on behalf of SSE, one of the UK’s largest power generators.
The Clyde extension, which has now passed the halfway point in its construction, could contribute as much as £121m to the Scottish economy. It is also expected to support around 500 jobs in Scotland through supply chain contracts.
The concrete batching plant was supplied and installed by HS Services International, exclusive distributor for Italian-based SIMEM in the UK and Ireland.
Graham Gibson, senior manager, materials, at North Wales-based Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK outlines the reasons for investing in the plant.
The modular plant boasts many features providing fast assembly and disassembly. Jones Bros will use the plant during the coming years at a number of diverse sites. The ease with which the plant can be dismantled and reassembled was a key feature in its decision to purchase the MMX 5000.
The aggregate module can be completely transported by one vehicle, the hopper walls and loading ramp containing the walls collapsing into the aggregate module for easy stowing during transport. This modular unit can be expanded to increase the number of hoppers available and therefore the types of aggregates. The flexibility of the modular concept suited Jones Bros’ specifications, particularly when moving the plant from site to site and accommodating different aggregate requirements.
The main plant is again a single unit which houses the electrical switchgear, weighgear and twin shaft mixer. With a production capacity of 3.33 cubic metres per cycle of compacted concrete, while able to guarantee 130 cubic metres per hour through continuous mixing cycles, the plant is optimized for loading in excess of 80m3 per hour to truck mixers.
Easy and safe maintenance is also a key feature of the plant. Access to the mixer is made easy thanks to a patented system of rails and hydraulics that moves the mixer lid complete with weighing devices. When a through cleaning of the mixer is necessary it is possible to move the entire lid unit, from the work to the transport position, making the internal part of the mixer accessible for a tougher cleaning or changing of wear parts.
The performance of the MMX is sustained for many years due to the over-sized structures that are fully hot-dip galzanised and the use of high quality pneumatic, hydraulic and electrical components.
The plant is completed with containerized service and admixture facilities.
A Dorner Batch Control System was specified by Jones Bros for the computerised control of the new plants operations and the same system has also been fitted to the McCrory back-up plant, giving plant operators a consistent control system and providing a single platform for batch mix design.
The system is complemented by ‘Dorner Connect’ which makes it possible for Jones Bros to remotely access important production data reliably and easily across both plants.
The Clyde batching plants have been integrated with a BetonWash 10 Moby water recycling system to ensure great care is taken when working within the sensitive Clyde environment. BetonWash is a comprehensive solution for the reclamation of excess concrete and slurry water from cleaning of trucks, pumps, mixers and buckets. This, combined with ground collection tanks allows Jones Bros to produce concrete with a significant proportion of recycled water.
The SIMEM MMX is the third and largest concrete production plant in the expanding Jones Bros fleet. Working alongside the company’s fleet of nine Volvo ADT based truck mixers, it will assist Jones Bros in undertaking larger, significant, concrete production contracts in the future.
Founded in the 1950s and employing 350 people, Jones Bros has grown significantly in the last decade. It is currently working on contracts including the construction of waste management facilities, highways, flood and marine defence, and renewable energy projects around the UK.