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Doka Forms Gigantic Energy Project in Icy North

On a remote location, where a mighty river plunges 15 meters into seething foam, spilling an average of approx. 459,660 gallons per second, Canada's largest construction project is in progress under extreme thermal conditions. The gigantic project demands an exquisite interplay of smart formwork techniques and clever logistic solutions, an exceptional collaboration between contractor Astaldi Canada and its suppliers as well as a zero tolerance for unsafe conduct and methods on the jobsite. Doka, therefore, supplies all formwork related products and services for the green energy project.

Located on the Lower Churchill River in the province of Labrador, Muskrat Falls will be Canada's second-largest hydroelectric generating facility. Once operational, it will generate 824 megawatts of electricity to power homes and businesses all across the Canadian provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador. The complexity of this project requires multiple solutions to complete the main powerhouse structure, including four turbines, three dam structures, six spillway piers, a large separation wall and smaller retaining walls. Contractor Astaldi Canada Inc. has selected Doka as its reliable partner for all formwork challenges on the Muskrat Falls jobsite. The client's prerequisites for awarding the contract were highly precise formwork solutions, proven logistical organization in adverse climatic conditions, diligent project documentation as well as a strong partnership to support with achieving their high safety requirements on-site.

High-performance through broad product range

Albeit the complexity of the project, all concrete challenges can be responded to with Doka's formwork expertise. Systems on site range from Large-area formwork Top 50 combined with the high-performance Dam formwork D22 to Load-bearing tower Staxo 100, Framed formwork Framax Xlife as well as various tie rod systems and support trestles. Doka Super Props as well as 3-dimensional shaped custom forms and tables were used for the semi spiral case. To minimize waste and transportation cost to site, a large portion of the formwork can be reused multiple times.

For optimum safety, D22 climbing platforms include integrated ladder systems with Staxo stair tower access to each climbing lift. Heavy slabs are being supported with Staxo 100. The Load-bearing tower Staxo 100 allows for safe ascents and descents on ladders featuring non-slip rungs and continuous railings integrated into the frames. Flexible handrail clamps in the transition areas, as well as pre-mounted platform linings contribute to provide maximum safety on the construction site.

At the time of project completion, Doka will have assembled about 5,000 working platforms and decks, over 100,000 sq ft of Large-area formwork Top 50 for all vertical walls, over 40,000 sq ft of Large-area formwork Top 50 for all horizontal slabs and more than 25,000 sq ft of Large-area formwork top 50 for all curved bull noses and spiral scroll case areas.

Smart formwork innovation for sustainable concrete results

As forming operations are ongoing year round, both the concrete mix and formwork are exposed to a broad range of temperatures varying from -40°F (-40°C) to 86°F (30°C), increasing the risk of frost and thermal cracking along with related repairing cost. Removing forms at the very ideal moment, hence, is crucial for sustainable concrete results. To achieve this, Astaldi chose Doka Concremote – a smart add-on to formwork, allowing for the measurement of concrete temperature and strength developments on-site. The technology delivers all relevant data in real time to determine the optimal form stripping and treatment times – fast and automated, making manual calculations obsolete and saving Astaldi cost and time as well as increasing productivity.

With 32 Concremote sensors installed to provide continuous measurements of heat and strength development in the ongoing concrete pours, Muskrat Falls is currently the largest construction site with Doka Concremote assistance.

All from a single source

Doka was selected above other competitors due to the company's level of experience with challenging and engineering-intense projects as well as their highly efficient products. The multi-scope services and materials provided by Doka save the contractor Astaldi from using different suppliers on the project and therefore reducing the amount of time spent on procurement, training, logistics, and quality control. Planning, detailed engineering, preassembly of formwork elements, logistical coordination, on-site Formwork Instructors and on-site Engineers who support to ensure high safety standards on the jobsite are all provided from a single source to keep the complex forming project as simple as possible.

Environmentally-friendly energy for the region

The future hydroelectric power station has been designed to meet strict environmental requirements and LEED certification. With an output of 824 megawatts it will supply the provinces of Labrador and Newfoundland with renewable energy, using about 40% of the power generated. A further 20% will be used to supply Nova Scotia, and the remaining 40% will be exported to Atlantic Canada or New England. This represents a major step toward a more sustainable energy management in the region with Doka helping to build a greener future.

The construction of Muskrat Falls hydroelectric generating facility began in 2014 and is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

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Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada (2019)

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