Tower Access Modifications
Client: Akzo Nobel Chemicals Ltd., Saskatoon,
ENGCOMP was commissioned by Akzo Nobel Chemicals
Limited (Akzo Nobel) to develop an access solution for their High
Pressure Fat Splitter Tower located at their Saskatoon facility.
The stack originally had three access platforms accessible via
a ladder. These platforms provided access for workers to adjust
valves, take readings and perform routine maintenance tasks. However
these tasks were inhibited because of size and space restraints
of the platforms. Additionally, some elements of the platforms
needed adjusting in order to meet current construction and safety
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By the client's request, ENGCOMP was asked to
design a ladder that would be located on the outside of each platform
rather than passing through each platform. This also involved
either modifying or replacing each platform. These modifications
required the use of existing connections to the tower and no alterations
made to the tower itself. This provided an engineering challenge
to ENGCOMP, because the ideal design of each platform would have
to be based on existing connection points, which weren't necessarily
in the most ideal location.
- Akzo Nobel currently has a high-pressure
fat splitter tower. This tower has various valves and gauges
that need to be accessed by Akzo Nobel employees on a regular
- These components were accessible by three
existing platforms that started at the roof of the plant and
went up to the top of the tower (approximately 49 feet off of
the ground). These platforms were accessible by a ladder.
- Some characteristics of the platforms did
not meet current construction code requirements, and access
to some components were limited by the size and space offered
by the platforms.
- The client planed to modify the existing
access platforms for the tower. The concern was for safety of
the workers when working on the platforms with limited space
on which to work.
- The client wanted to relocate the ladder
to the outside of the top platform and fill in the grating where
the ladder went through the platform. This provided a continuous
walkway/platform around the tower.
- Follow all relevant codes described in the
current National Building Code of Canada.
- Design all new structural steel to be integrated
with current connection points.
- Project was awarded to ENGCOMP in September
- Project was completed in January 2006.
- Akzo Nobel was satisfied with ENGCOMP's
participation of this project.
- Even though the project scope changed throughout
the process, Akzo Nobel ended up with a suitable solution to
their initial problem, which now meets current construction
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