Farrat Levalators used to install CLARA, a Compact Linear Accelerator for Research and Applications at Daresbury Laboratory

CLARA, a Compact Linear Accelerator for Research and Applications, is a new FEL test facility at Daresbury Laboratory in the UK that will act as a major upgrade to the existing RF photoinjector test facility, VELA.

Farrat were asked to supply 16 Levalators for the installation of Module 4 of CLARA. The Levalators required would need to take a 3 Tonne load and level 0.5g acceleration forces in all directions.

CLARA - Compact Linear Accelerator for research and Applications
The Farrat LA04 Levalator was selected as the most suitable machine levelling mount for the particle accelerator, due to it’s high-quality, high-accuracy and robust design. The LA04 offers micrometer type height adjustment and was manufactured for CLARA with a bolt-through connection, to ensure rigidity and accurate levelling.
Farrat LA8 Levalator in-situ at Sci-Tech Daresbury
Farrat Levalators in-situ under Compact Linear Accelerator, Sci-Tech Daresbury 2
More about CLARA – CLARA will generate intense pulses of light in the wavelength range 100nm to 400nm, and it will generate pulse lengths of only a few cycles in the most extreme ultrashort pulse demonstration – equivalent to sub-attosecond in the X-ray region.

The ultimate aim of CLARA is to develop a normal-conducting test accelerator (delivering approximately 250 MeV electron beam energy), able to generate longitudinally and transversely bright electron bunches, and to use these bunches in the experimental production of stable, synchronized, ultra-short photon pulses of coherent light from a single pass FEL, using techniques directly applicable to the future generation of light source facilities.

Dimension Convention Used – Module 4 - CLARA Machine
To learn more about CLARA, please visit the official Science and Technology Facilities Council website. For more information on using Farrat Levalators to install and level machinery, view the full product range here.

Farrat 3rd Generation LA16 Levalator’s supplied to Alstom, for the installation of 12 steam turbine generators across power plants in Thailand

Alstom was awarded the contract back in 2015 by Gulf MP Company Limited. The 12 35MW to 45MW geared reaction steam turbine (GRT) generators, auxiliaries, and condensers will be installed by 2019. As steam turbines require stable, level foundations to support the machine bed and reduce the impacts of machine-induced vibrations, Farrat’s LA16 Levalator was specified to act as the efficient connection between steam turbine and foundation.

Alstom GRT Steam Turbine
Alstom GRT Steam Turbine
Farrat LA16 Levalator for Alstom GTR Stream Turbines in Thailand
Farrat LA16 Levalator

The Farrat LA16 Levalator overcomes the deficiencies of alternate machine levelling solutions on the market,  such as Jackscrew supports.

The LA16 consists of a high grade cast iron basebox, machined on the inside to support the screw-driven, fully machined lower-wedge (high grade cast iron) and elevate the fully machined steel top-wedge. A spherical disc sits in a spherical recess on the top surface of the steel wedge, providing a spherical seating to correct misalignment and complex angles between machine and foundation.

Jackscrews however, are inadequate for large machine support as they are ‘pivot only’. Pivot only supports are not stiff enough horizontally or vertically and will distort under excessive loads – limiting hold down bolt tension and creating localised stressing, in both machine bed and support plate. The LA16 is Farrat’s 3rd generation Levalator, independently tested to 2,500 kN capacity without failure, allowing us to uprate our Load Capacity to 1,000 kN. From a UK Foundry, we have increased the material grade of the carbon steel used, so that the LA16 has higher Tensile Strengths. Quality has also been increased, with the introduction of the 3.1 material certification for all castings and the Height Adjustment per full-turn has been decreased from the original Levalator, to offer higher accuracy when installing.  

The project’s first GTR steam engine installation using Farrat LA16’s was commissioned in 2016. The remaining power plant installations are expected to be complete and operational by 2019, offering additional capacity to the grid of Thailand and providing steam to the power plants’ neighbouring industries.

For more information on Farrat LA16 Levalators, please click here.