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One Big Transformer

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Reloadron

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CLEVELAND, Ohio -- It didn't look like all that much. Just a big gray box, about twice as large as the shipping containers you see on passing railroad cars.
But the electrical transformer unloaded Saturday morning at the Port of Cleveland weighed 300 tons -- the heaviest object ever dropped off in the port's history.

Containers weighing 150 tons are common, said Eric Hirsiniak, the port's operations and facilities manger. But objects more than 200 tons are rare, coming through here about once every 10 years.
Built in England by the French power equipment company Alstom, the $9 million transformer had a monthlong journey by ship. It is headed for the Cardinal Power Plant in Brilliant, Ohio, near Steubenville.

A crane on the Dutch cargo ship Stella Prima had no trouble lifting the 20-foot-high, 33-foot-long transformer and lowering it onto the rail car, as workers guided it into the right place with ropes.

Of course, moving 300 tons of cargo can throw even a trans-oceanic cargo ship off balance, so the crew had to pause every few seconds to shift water ballast to keep the ship from tipping.

The transformer will be used to upgrade the plant, which is jointly owned by American Electric Power and Buckeye Power, said Ralph Leidy, a salesman for Alstom. It was ordered near the start of 2009.

Didn't convert the metrics but this is one big transformer! Took awhile to build it too! :)

Ron
 

Nigel Goodwin

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Only a 'tiddler' :D

I was watching a programme the other week that explored where the old trans-atlantic Marconi transmitter used to be, on the Irish coast.

All that's left now is a few lumps of concrete, but they described how big the capacitor was they used to use - and build a tiny version as a demonstration (about a 3 foot cube) - here's a description off a website:

The power supply charged a capacitor made from 288 sixty foot by twenty foot wide metal sheets separated about 6 inches from each other (Figure 5). The sheets were suspended from rafters at the top of the building and hung vertically down almost to ground level. This capacitor (or "condenser," to use the original terminology) occupied most of the 160 foot long transmitter building. Thus, the building became known as the condenser building.

This great array of plates provided only 1.7 microfarads with a voltage rating of 15 kilovolts. An "air insulated" design was chosen rather than a more compact glass dielectric design because it was relatively-trouble free and easy to construct from locally available materials. If a draft caused the plates to move and short out, the "spot welded" plates were simply knocked apart.
 

Reloadron

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One heck of a cap there Nigel. I liked how they went with air over glass.

Ron
 

Reloadron

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capacitor made from 288 sixty foot by twenty foot wide metal sheets separated about 6 inches from each other

That was just plain massive and then they actually suspended the individual plates from the rafters. Those plates were 60 feet tall. You would get neck pains looking up! Now figuring an air dielectric I wonder how elements like humidity and temperature figured into it? During my years I have been fortunate to see some really cool electrical devices. I would have loved to have seen that capacitor or for the time condenser? :)

Ron
 

HiTech

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The BIG One - WTAM 1100
Above is a link to photos of the ship and transformer. BTW, I think the ballast shifting was neccitated by the other items aboard the ship as well. Actually, that ship is on the small side, being just over 300' long and 60' wide. There are some much larger lifting ships (barges) on the waters.

Take a look at these heavy-lift ships!!
Heavy lift ship - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
https://shipsandharbours.com.s3.amazonaws.com/4277.jpg

A 300 ton transformer? That's a box of fluffy pastries compared to a near 12,000 ton lift!!!

World record lift
SSCV Thialf set the world record by installing the 11,800 ton Shearwater deck for Shell UK in 2000.
10356-news_shearwater_large.jpg
 

Reloadron

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Now those are some serious transformers. The heavy lift ships are another incredible machine. When you actually think about what is going on it's incredible stuff. Interesting also in the stories is the planning and how the design begins years in advance and even the voyage plans take 8 months to a year.

Ron
 
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