Two new tower cranes will aid in the construction of a 108MW hydro power project in the Vietnamese province of Gia Lai

CONSTRUCTION of the Se San Number 3 hydroelectric power plant was started recently at the Ia Krai commune of the Ia Grai district, in the central highlands province of Gia Lai, Vietnam. The plant, situated on the Se San river, will have two turbines with a combined capacity of 108MW, supplying 479M kWh annually for the central and southern regions.

Vietnam’s government has ambitious plans to increase its energy-generating capability over the next 5 to 10 years and the construction of the Sesan Number 3 dam goes some way to helping it achieve its goals. The project is scheduled to last three years, with completion planned for 2005. An estimated 700,000m3 of concrete will be used in the construction.

State owned commercial banks teamed up to provide Electricity of Viet Nam with a loan of US$140M for the construction of Se San 3. With US$290M in investment capital, the scheme will join the existing Yaly hydro plant 20km away to supply power to Central Vietnam. The Yaly hydro power plant was inaugurated in April 2002 and is Vietnam’s second largest after the Hoa Binh plant in the north of the country.

Construction work

Two potain MD2200 cranes are to be used on the construction of the Se San 3 dam. The order for the cranes was confirmed at a special ceremony held recently, where representatives from both manitowoc Crane Group and government-owned contractor Song Da Corporation (SDC) put their signatures to a contract. Representing Manitowoc Crane Group was Eric Etchart, the company’s Executive Vice President for Asia Pacific, while SDC’s General Director, Le Van Que, was in attendance for the contractor.

The two tower cranes are to be delivered in the months of August and September 2003 and will be fully erected and working by early December. Once on site they will be used for pouring concrete and lifting formwork and steel reinforcement and other equipment. The MD2200 is among the largest of the cranes in the Potain saddle jib range with a maximum capacity of 64t and maximum available jib of 80m. At the jib end a maximum of 22.8t can be handled. On the Se San project, the cranes will be working at a height under hook of around 75.6m.

The MD2200 cranes can also be fitted with the Nippon Topbelt concrete conveyor system, a below-jib suspended conveyor that allows concrete to be pumped to the jib’s maximum radius. At Se San, one of the cranes is to be equipped with the Topbelt system from the outset, while the other is to be configured to accommodate the system later in the construction.

Commenting on the order for the two giant cranes, Le Van Que, General Director of SDC, said: ‘We considered our options very carefully for this project and decided to opt for the Potain cranes as the most efficient construction method. We are confident that these two cranes will help us achieve our construction targets on this project.’

Eric Etchart, Manitowoc Crane Group’s executive vice president for Asia Pacific said he was delighted to have secured the contract with SDC and noted that the MD2200 cranes were beginning to achieve their potential in the region: ‘In addition to the two that are scheduled for delivery to SDC, we have two already working in China on the Three Gorges dam project,’ he said. ‘We are delighted to be associated with this project and expect it to greatly assist in Vietnam’s ambitious economic development for the coming years.’