Roof an engineering feat
Monday, 28th February, 2011
By John Casey
The depth of Broken Hill's engineering expertise was on show again recently when a team of 15 men and three cranes undertook the massive exercise of roofing a new structure at Kanandah Road.
The purpose-built facility will be the new home for Alliance Engineering's state-of-the-art Plasma profile cutting machine which is expected to add a new dimension to the engineering industry in Broken Hill.
"The Plasma profile cutting machine is one of only five of its type in Australia and will introduce new technology to Broken Hill," Alliance Engineering Group Operations Manager Steve Thompson said.
"It is a significant piece of machinery and needed a purpose-built home which is why we have constructed this facility, which in itself provided quite a challenge."
Mr Thompson said a team of experts from Lawrence Engineering, Nejaim Steel Supplies and Top Gear Engineering was needed to erect the 42-metre by 18m structure.
"The roof itself was clad while at ground level before the cranes came in to manoeuvre it into place," Mr Thompson said.
"I was very happy with how smoothly the whole operation went, it really was impressive to see."
Alliance Engineering, which was formed in 2005, is confident the arrival of the cutting machine will attract new business to Broken Hill and in the long run will enable the group to look globally for work.
"It is perfect timing with the recent announcement regarding CBH Resources ramping up and with the new shopping centre on the horizon," Mr Thompson said.
"We believe this will generate further employment for Broken Hill when the plant is commissioned in mid-April.
"In the past 12 months we have recruited four new apprentices across the group and expect to see more expansion."
Mr Thompson said the Plasma profile unit was considered superior to similar technology because it was more versatile and quicker than the other options.
"We will be able to process steel plate from anywhere between three millimetres to 300 millimetres," he said.
"It is totally appropriate for this area with all the mining activity and will enable us to take on more production work."