Georgia Power’s Vogtle 3 project has reached another construction milestone with the installation of the module that will house the AP1000’s reactor pressure vessel.

The 29 tonne CA-04 module is over eight metres tall and 6.4 m in diameter, and required one of the largest cranes in the world — a 171-m lift derrick — to lower it into place.

Construction officially began on Vogtle 3 in March, with the pouring of the concrete basemat for the unit. The containment vessel bottom was installed in June, and the unit’s reactor pressure vessel is already on site. The unit is expected to start operation in late 2017.

Four AP1000s are currently under construction in the USA: Vogtle 3 and its sister unit Vogtle 4 in Georgia, and Summer units 2 and 3 in South Carolina.

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