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Spot Light 2011

Toward further lifeline improvements
The world ’s largest-capacity underground storage tank
for Liquefied Natural Gas is under construction

The Tokyo Gas Ohgishima LNG Terminal in the waterfront area of Yokohama supplies city gas to the Tokyo region, and consists of three underground LNG storage tanks, each with a capacity of 200,000 kiloliters. Driven by growing demand for clean and safe natural gas, plans called for a fourth tank, which has been under construction since April 2009, with Shimizu handling all design and construction activities. On completion, this will be the world’s largest-capacity underground LNG storage tank, with a storage capacity of 250,000 kiloliters. The construction project adopts a soil-covered roof in which part of the tank’s domed top will rise above the surface of the ground and be covered in soil. This method achieves considerable cost savings by keeping costly underground excavation to roughly the same depth as that required for a 200,000-kiloliter tank and by using excavated earth as banking.

In February 2011, work proceeded over four consecutive days and nights on the most challenging part of this project: concrete placement for the eight-meter-thick base of the tank. Requiring a total of 39,050 cubic meters of concrete, this became the largest continuous concrete placement project ever attempted in Japan. Drawing on Shimizu’s technological expertise and all-round ability, the project is currently slated for completion in November 2013.

A view of the sky from about 60 meters underground; the tank will have a storage capacity of 250,000 kiloliters, an inner diameter of 72.0 meters, and a depth of 61.7 meters (photo taken in Summer 2010)

A cross-section of the underground LNG tank currently under construction. Greenery planted on the soil cover will create an attractive scene.


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