Austin-Bergstrom International Airport
Project Start and Completion Dates: August 2017–September 2019
|Scope:||3300 tons of steelwork|
|Outcome:||Work supplied, fabricated and erected|
|Owner/Developer:||Austin-Bergstrom International Airport|
This extensive turnkey project required fabrication and erection of parking garage sunshade structures and solar panel supports at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, which included 226 columns requiring 40 linear feet of complete joint penetration each between shop and field. This required ultrasonic testing and 9,000 feet of complete joint penetration welding.
Challenges and Resolutions
The contract requirements included a large amount of welding in column arms, which required an automatic welding system. Patriot attempted to use a weld tractor, but it was not efficient to get fabricated materials into field, so Patriot Erectors worked with ESAB to have a custom-built submerged arc welder for the Dripping Springs fabrication shop. The new system required extensive hands-on training for maintenance and operators. With this specialized equipment and training, Patriot was able to complete the welds in two passes using a dual-head AC/DC SAW system with two 5/32” diameter wires (20-foot-long, 0.625” deep, single V groove welds).
Due to limited space, the specialized pieces were assembled on the ground then the column and arm assemblies were “flown” up to the roof using a jig on the ground, and a spider crane was used on the roof to move the pieces into place. These assemblies required extensive amounts of semi-automatic welding.
Additionally, there was limited space onsite, so additional equipment was rented to help expedite the final requirements of the project.
Operations took place while airport was fully operational. Requirements included an expedited schedule after holiday traffic and rerouting.
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