A highly innovative use of Link 51 racking it may be, but on the surface you would never notice. That is because the DeepStore facility is some 550 feet beneath the Cheshire countryside in the Winsford Rock Salt Mine.
Over 150 years of mine working has created a phenomenal 20 million cubic metres of void.
This vast underground area, which is still increasing at a rate of a million cubic metres per year, is formed by the ‘roomand pillar’ technique which creates a repeating pattern of support columns and open areas.
Alternative uses are now being sought for these caverns, and one of the first is long-term and secure storage for a range of paper documents and records, electronic media and artifacts.
Local authorities, financial institutions, legal firms and hospitals have so far taken advantage of the benefits offered at this storage location.
The operation is run by Minosus, a joint venture formed by Salt Union and Vivendi, within which the DeepStore organisation operates. In this highly innovative approach to utilising an existing man-made resource, Link 51’s equipment is a key element.
- Equip Stage One of the facility — now 5 kilometres distant from the working face of the salt mine — with two-tier racking, comprising an upper storage level covering the ground floor
- Ensure the design makes maximum use of the available space, whilst allowing daily access for placement and retrieval
- Accommodate the uneven floor of this mined area
- Design the racking to house both standard and non-standard box unit sizes
- Ensure adequate safety features are incorporated in the design
- Prevent the need to stack boxes
- Specify adjustable racking, to accommodate changes in the shelving layout as and when required
- The racking structures are based on a modular design, tailored to suit the individual ‘rooms’ within the mine
- Each racking module provides up to 12 shelving levels — five at the lower level with up to six, plus the walkway, above
- The modules are designed to accommodate up to 7,000 box units, including space for those non-standard sizes, used, for example, in x-ray storage
- The inherent strength of the Link 51 XL racking allows the uprights to be adapted to the ‘non-standard’ heights which are required across the uneven floor
- The layout of this underground store includes access ways and tunnels, wide enough to permit use of the load carrying hand-pulled pallet trucks
- Safety screens of steel mesh clad the backs of the racking at safety critical locations
For more information on any of the products specified for DeepStore please call us on 0800 169 5151.