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KaXu Solar One Solar Plant

The KaXu Solar One is a concentrated solar thermal plant, located 50km North East of Pofadder in the Northern Cape. It covers an area of 1,100 hectares.

Geopile Africa was contracted to install over 20 000 positions, with 55 000 meters of open-ended ductile iron piles. Each pile required the concreting in of a 40mm diameter threaded bar to a tolerance of 3mm for the anchor bolt.

Geopile Africa also conducted a series of pile penetration and pull out tests to identify the ultimate penetration refusal rate to suite the loading from the parabolic trough solar mirrors.

The efficiencies gained by simultaneously utilising separate crews for pile installation, bolt setting and remedial piling, and concreting, resulted in the project being completed almost 6 months ahead of schedule.

The remedial piling team focused on ensuring that the installed piles were moved slightly if needed to ensure that the 40mm diameter threaded bars could be placed within 3mm of accuracy, inside the head of the 118mm diameter, 7.5mm wall thickness ductile iron pile.

Geopile Africa used five, 29 ton excavators to install the piles.  The most piles installed in a day by one excavator and its crew of just three people was one hundred and eight.

Geopile was consistently ranked as the top safety performer on this site.

The ductile iron pile had never been used in the open-ended format on such a scale before.  Geopile Africa was able to prove that the system worked, and worked well.

When this project was completed in 2013, it was the largest single job for ductile iron piles on the planet, installed on budget and before due date.