Equipment for areas such as the oil and gas sector and chemical industries needs to be robust and suitable for a range of environmental conditions. As a spokesperson from lifting equipment manufacturer Kuli Helmut Kempkes, explains, “[Industrial] cranes need to be reliable in extreme environments, such as heat or humidity. Therefore, suppliers have to provide flexible solutions and stable processes.”
To be able to provide customers with products that meet specific requirements Kuli Helmut Kempkes manufactures its own motors in its German facilities. “This gives us the opportunity to make a tailor-made component,” a company spokesperson explains. The company also produce the hydraulic units of platforms at the Remscheid facility. In addition, the company can fulfil requirements for corrosion protection since they have their own paint shop. “We have even developed crabs [trolleys] with reduced heights to meet requirements for a better use of room height,” a spokesperson adds.
The latest product from Kuli Helmut Kempkes is a trolley with a wire rope hoist for a DG EOT Crane, which was shown at the last Bauma show. The hoist has a 120 tonne capacity and a lifting height of 15 metres. “The crane will also be equipped with an additional crab to enable two crabs to jointly turn over larger machine components,” a company spokesperson said. “All movements of the crane are frequency-controlled for better positioning and safe handling of heavy loads.”
The location of industrial sites is also driving change in the design of industrial lifting equipment. Products used in mines, for example, need to have easily accessible parts for inspection and maintenance purposes. Andrew Pimblett, Street Crane Company managing director, explains, “Mines are often hundreds of miles from cities so engineers need to be self-sufficient to keep plant running. This makes hoist design crucial.
“Street Crane hoists have unique features especially relevant in mining,” Pimblett adds, “The open design of the Street hoist means that components can be easily accessed for inspection and service. Components can be removed and replaced without lowering the hoist to the ground for disassembly.”
Other important design features for working in mines is for the product to be capable of working in a dry and uneven underground environment. GGR Group, for example, recently worked at the Winsford Rock Salt Mine in Cheshire, UK, 182 m underground.
For the project GGR used a Unic URW-095 mini crane. Suitable for tight spaces, the crane has a width of 600 mm, a working radius of 8.41 m and an 8.65 m boom. Its lifting capacity is 0.995 tonnes at 3.5 m radius. The crane also has a number of outrigger configurations, making it suitable for working on uneven surfaces and slopes.
The 095 can also be fitted with a 300 kg searcher hook and 700 kg searcher hook and fly-jib. “These are ideal for lifting under soffits and overhangs,” GGR adds. The crane also has radio remote control and a range of fuel options, including petrol and LPG dual.
Tasks for the mini crane at the mine included helping with maintenance work on the mine’s conveyor belts and processing lines.
Increased hoisting speed is another demand from customers. To meet these requirements, SWF Krantechnik, a manufacturer of lightweight crane systems and electric wire rope hoists and winches, has improved hoisting speed controls for its standard wire rope hoists up to 80 tonnes and for its winches up to 250 tonnes. “We have also introduced many other improvements such as slack rope protection, sway control and shock load protection,” Gerald Körner, SWF Krantechnik sales director of exports adds.
On the ASR type systems, for example, the new hoisting speed controls include fast speed with empty hook, medium speed with partial loads and safety speed with full loads. “The benefits for the user include higher productivity and less energy consumption,” the manufacturer adds. In addition, the hoist drive can detect when the load is grounded and stops the lowering process. There is also a sway control feature, which brings the load to the required speed and minimises the sway of the load caused by acceleration and deceleration. A shock load protection feature for smooth lifting is also fitted.
Demag Cranes has also improved its DR-Com rope hoist product range. The hoists now have an improved FEM classification, better maintenance costs and improved handling rates, the manufacturer said. “The move up to the next-highest FEM group means that its rated service is doubled, while its maintenance requirement is cut,” a spokesperson explained. The 2 tonne model is now available with FEM 4m classification. Cross-travel speed has been increased to 24 metres per minute. The Demag DR-Com rope hoists are available in three sizes, with load capacities of 2 to 10 tonnes and with a 4/1 reeving arrangement as standard.
New to the market
Finnish-based manufacturer of overhead cranes and industrial hoists, Konecranes, has also introduced some new products. The latest addition to the Konecranes’ workstation lifting systems series (WLS), for example, is the XA Aluminum Workstation Crane. Its modular design is to help reduce downtime during installation, expansions, or upgrades. “It can handle loads up to two tonnes and has a light aluminium structure to help reduce rolling resistance and dead weight by 50 % so loads are handled faster and with less effort,” the manufacturer adds.
Konecranes also offer electric chain hoists, including the CLX electric chain hoist, which has a new patented chain wheel to help increase service life to up to four times longer than previous models (FEM 2m 1,600 hours). “The newly developed drive system also allows for better power transmission, oil-lubricated gears and powerful motors with a speed ratio up to 6:1,” the manufacturer adds. The hoist has a standard speed of 8 metres per minute. It is also fitted with a brake and safety clutch to prevent a load from falling if the clutch fails.
Industrial lifting equipment provider, NFC (Shenyang) Metallurgical Machinery (SMMC), also offers a number of products for industrial lifting. Currently the company has product lines for heavy mining equipment, heavy duty overhead cranes and pot tending machines (PTM) for the primary aluminium industry. “A PTM is a complex partly automated overhead crane with a tooling centre including anode changer, grab, breaker hammer, rotating cabin and several hoist trolleys,” a company spokesperson explains, “ The main hoist trolley is used to tap pure aluminium from the electrolysis cell bath. Capacity is around 32 tonnes. Accuracy, safety and reliability must be of highest level.” SMMC will open a new 530,000 m2 factory in Shenyang this summer.
Working in sensitive areas
Having products that produce zero emissions is another design that is on the rise for products used in sensitive industrial areas. GGR Group, for example, used a F200E Galizia pick and carry crane to carry out a lift at a paper manufacturing plant.
The battery-powered Galizia mini crane was chosen because it is fume-free and quiet to operate. For the project the 20 tonne capacity F200E Galizia was used to install a paper treatment oven. The F200E has a 6 metre working radius, front wheel drive, 180 degrees hydraulic steering and a 2,295 mm wide chassis for easier navigation. In addition, the F200E has removable counterweights and radio remote control and an on-board battery charger.