Chernobyl – The biggest mobile arch in the world

In 2018 BIC completed  electrical installations on the world’s biggest mobile arch (New Safe Confinement, or NSC) in Chernobyl, Ukraine, which replaces the old shelter over the nuclear reactors and secures the area from nuclear radiation for the coming 100 years.

33 years have passed since the accident in the Chernobyl nuclear plant in Ukraine in 1986, and the first shelter built in 1986, which was designed to last 30 years, has now been replaced with a more permanent confinement construction, which makes it possible to clean up the nuclear reactors underneath.
In 2005 a Consortium won the tender and the work began in 2010. BIC was invited to perform electrical installations on the giant metal arch and with the construction phase reaching its final stage, in November 2017, our first technicians began working on site in Chernobyl, where we had over 40 technicians in place.

The safety of the technicians was the primary concern during this project, and a lot of time and effort was spent in the first stage looking into the safety standards at the French-led project. When we gained confidence that our technicians would not be exposed to radiation much stronger than that of an average European metropolis, and that first-class safety procedures were in place, we accepted the contract, says Customer Relations Controller at BIC Electric, Cezary Miller.

The new confinement would be able to cover the ground area of the Eiffel Tower, and its weight is 3,5 times that. Underneath the arch are the damaged reactors and the old protective structure. Technicians from BIC Electric were working on the electrical installations of the specialized equipment inside the arch. The long-term aim, after the completion of the construction works, was to make it possible to remove the old shelter and clean up the reactors underneath without people getting exposed to radiation – every process to be handled from a control room outside of the arch.