Beznau NPP Block I und II - Switzerland
Exchange of reactor heads

Scope of works performed

Lifting, skidding and lowering of the reactor head.
Development and enineering of operational method.
Load test

Key data

Weight: 85t
Skidding distance: 30m


Axpo Switzerland


Westinghouse Belgium

VSL Entity

VSL Heavy Lifting


2012 - 2015

Project Description

 Challenging exchange of the reactor heads

Beznau`s "Block 1 joined the grid in 1969 and is therefore the oldest working nuclear power plant in the world. The structurally identical "Block 2" was completed in 1971. 

Axpo, Beznau`s operating company, decided to exchange the reactor heads in both blocks as part of the annual maintenance work in 2015. The preparation for this cahllenging operation started in 2012. 

VSL Heavy Lifting was entrusted with the transport of the new and old reacotr heads for both blocks - from the point of delivery into the respective containment building and vice versa. The contract included the development of the operational method, the complete engineering and a load test. 

The extremely high safety and security standards as well as the limited transportation routes were a major challenge. 

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