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Actuation unit aids inspection.

POWER Jacks has supplied an electric linear actuator system for a specialist machine to carry out reactor core inspections at a nuclear power station.

The new in-core inspection equipment (NICIE) machine to be used at Hinkley Point in Somerset has been developed by BNS Nuclear Services.

Power Jacks designed and manufactured the main linear actuation unit engaging the machine with the reactor standpipe.

It also supplied four additional jacks that act as stabilisers when the machine is coupled to the standpipe.

The NICIE inspects nuclear reactors by lowering a camera into the reactor fuel channel to provide measurement and maintenance checks.

The main body of the machine is raised and lowered to engage it with the reactor stand pipes.

The Power Jacks actuator is designed to lift and lower the 20kN load over a stroke of 525mm.

The end of travel is signalled by proximity sensors installed in the actuator.

To maintain a rigid column over the stroke the actuator has two internal guidance mechanisms for the ram.

As a safety feature the ram is fitted with a proprietary clutch to act as a mechanical failsafe.

It comes into operation to prevent an overload condition should external control systems fail.

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Title Annotation:TECHNOLOGY; Power Jacks
Publication:Professional Engineering Magazine
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Oct 15, 2008
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