Joshua Farrell

Lifting Inspections Go Digital

Businesses and organisations in several different fields undertake lifting inspections.

Whatever the size or shape of a business, it may be required to conduct lifting inspections if it operates any form of sling, crane, or hoist equipment. If an organisation operates within the construction, manufacturing, or mining, oil and gas industries; lifting inspections are likely already an important part of its organisational inspections and compliance.

Today, more and more businesses are taking their lifting inspections paperless, choosing to go digital with all their organisational checks. Whether that is inspecting the crane on a building site or giving a sling a pre-use check; lifting inspections can be of paramount importance to its activities.

Inspectors and businesses alike are today choosing mobile devices as their tool for conducting any form of inspection on or off site. By pairing the mobile device with an inspection checklist, the inspector can be sure to capture all data necessary, as efficiently and to as much detail as is possible within current inspection solutions today.

Perhaps the biggest draw for taking business inspections digital in general are the improvements in the inspection process for the user. Replacing the pen and paper inspection checklist gives the opportunity to bring new functionalities of the mobile device into the inspection setup.

Andy Walker from Walker Certification has recognised the benefit of going paperless for his inspections.

“When I first started, I used to go out to site with a book that looked like a reflex pack of paper with 500 pages, not photos, no pictures and the reports were pretty average, going paperless has not only been cost effective it has saved time for me and the client,” Walker said.

Taking advantage of the smartphone or tablet camera can allow the inspector to take pictures of equipment, cranes, assets or scan barcodes/RFID. With the image, the user can then use the touchscreen with or without a stylus to make annotations or highlight certain parts of the image. This is incredibly useful for drawing attention to wear and tear to showcase a crack in a crane support etc.

Outside of the camera, the inspector can also use features such as speech-to-text services or standardised response checklist design to capture information fast. With all reports and inspection data being filed digitally against each lifting asset, the audit trail and business intelligence analytics become simple and straightforward processes.

The safety compliance trail for a crane or demonstrating observance of safety regulations for a hoist can become much easier to undertake if everything is stored on one platform, with inspections tailored to demonstrate compliance to specific standards.

“I said to the Pervidi staff that what would be really helpful is when I fail something, the whole section of the inspection report comes up red as a visual aid for users,” Walker said.

 

“I had been exposed to the Pervidi paperless software at another company but they hadn’t taken the trouble to speak with the guys at Pervidi to maximise the benefits and features of the paperless program,” he said.

After information has been captured on the inspection checklist and the report marked as completed, all inspection data can be transferred to the larger inspection portal for cataloguing and analysing. This means that each report and data piece get filed with the right lifting asset.

In the event of repairs being needed, maintenance teams can log in and access this information, where all the inspection reports and historical records for that particular crane are available; from start to finish, cradle to grave. As well as having this access, the inspection system can be set up in a way that trigger notifications and alerts are sent to the necessary personnel or clients on events taking place.

This could be that a crane inspection has failed, notifying the maintenance personnel of the type of fail and what lifting asset, thereby saving time in the scheduling of maintenance or ordering of replacement parts. Other alerts could be a completion of a checklist or report which would mark the process or equipment asset safe to use and work can proceed. By speeding up the data transmission, and keeping necessary staff informed, business proficiency and workplace effectiveness will dramatically increase.

For many organisations undertaking lifting inspections, it is also important to be aware and in tune of asset implementation and safety performance. Management teams want to know that their workers are both safe and keeping to the guidelines in how they operate machinery. Any lifting equipment can both be dangerous and expensive to replace if misused, which is why it is imperative that management can provide guidance and see data of how things are being used.

For digital lifting inspections, this process can largely be solved through two things: attachment of reference material and checklist structure; and analytics tracking of inspection data. Attachment of reference material is vital in ensuring that inspectors or  technicians capture inspection data within the lines of the inspection and that they understand what they are achieving. Not only is it important from a safety perspective that they understand the nature and safety of the asset that they are checking, but it can be helpful to have a copy of the industry standard (e.g. AS 2550)so that they know what the information being recorded will be used for.

Similarly, the structure of the inspection checklist allows managers and supervisors to know exactly what is being complied with and what isn’t, thanks to how you structure the inspection process. On the other hand, it is also important that all inspection data captured is stored in central locations so that Business Intelligence (BI) can be used to analyse the data. For lifting inspections, assets such as cranes or hoists can be expensive items, so their effective operations and usefulness are key to a successful operation. By allowing business intelligence to analyse the inspection data captured digitally over time, managers can be sure that the organisation and its assets are performing near optimum.

There are several benefits for organisations and businesses conducting lifting inspections when they choose to move to digital. Alongside the benefits to the inspector or technician in the form of new recording features, maintenance staff can stay more up to date in terms of asset conditions, whilst managers and other stakeholders can accurately determine performance and workplace compliance.

Andy Walker has seen the benefit of the Pervidi product and it has become an asset for his business and the clients he serves.

“I have actually stated to win work, thanks to the clear reporting of the Pervidi program, operators just love the quality of it,” Walker said.

To learn more about digital lifting inspection solutions and how they could be integrated within your business setup, visit Pervidi.com.au.

 

 

 

 

BORGER CRANES AND RIGGING SERVICES UPGRADE HEAVY LIFT CAPABILITIES WITH NEW LIEBHERR CRAWLER

Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services recently increased its heavy lift capabilities, with a new Liebherr LR 1600/2 joining the fleet. The new crawler joins other Liebherr heavy lifters including the LTM 1750-9.1 and the LTM 1650-8.1.

Embracing innovation and new technology is important if Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services is to stay ahead of the competition.

Leading the market and not following is the only way Shawn Borger, Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services’ general manager and his team know. “In my opinion, innovation is a key factor to succeeding in the crane hire business. And the introduction of the new LR 1600/2 and the arrival of the first LTM 1650-8.1 in the country mid last year are a testament to this approach. If we see a crane that will change the market, we want it in our fleet,” he explained.

“Liebherr delivered the LR 1600/2 at the end of last year and it’s been in our Newcastle yard since then. It has been set up in all the various configurations and it is now working on a project in Glen Innes in northern New South Wales,” he said.

Although the LR 1600/2 was initially designed for the wind farm sector, Borger can see many applications for the crawler in other industry sectors. “The new crawler will certainly help Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services compete for more work in the wind farm sector. In my opinion, it’s not as good as the Liebherr LTM 1750-9.1 for this type of work, but our cranes can’t be everywhere.

“The LR 1600/2 will work well in the wind farm sector, but it is also ideal for large infrastructure projects and for some of the large mining projects which are in the pipeline. It will suit most projects where you need to lift over 500t,” said Borger.

The LR 1600/2 is one of the most popular crawler cranes designed by Liebherr. Although it was primarily designed to work in the wind farm sector, there are 223 operating on varying projects right across the world. In addition to the standard LR 1600/2 version, a version with narrow crawler track, known as the LR 1600/2-W, was also marketed successfully over a period of 10 years.

The main feature of this version was the fact that it could travel along narrow crawlers in wind farms considerably easier than the standard version. The narrow track version accounted for around one-quarter of all these cranes in use worldwide.

Initially, the LR 1600/2 was delivered in its SL4DFB configuration, designed for wind turbines with a hub height of 130 to 135 metres. In this configuration, the crane had a main boom of 138 metres and a fixed jib of 12 metres. This was the benchmark for turbines with a hub height of 135 metres.

Over the next few years, however, the size of wind turbines increased dramatically up to hub heights of 150 metres or more. This altered the requirements for the crane, which the designers at Liebherr followed closely.

The lifting capacities and hoisting heights of the boom systems were continuously modified with the SL10 and SL13 versions, which both became established on the market. These booms enabled the crane to handle wind turbines with hub heights of 150 metres.

The Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services teams can’t wait to get their hands on the new crane. “Our crews always love to work with new equipment, and I know it will be the same with the LR 1600/2. As I said, the Newcastle crew have had some time with the crane and worked on its various configurations so it will be really interesting to see how it performs during the first project,” said Borger.

The Liebherr LTM 1650-8.1 has proved to be a very valuable addition to the Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services fleet, said Borger. “The LTM 1650-8.1 has been deployed to 20 jobs so far, which is exceptional for a heavy lift all terrain. It has proven to be a great addition to the fleet. With its VarioBallst counterweight positioning it has provided clients with options they have never had before.

It is the same size as many of the 500t capacity all terrains, but it can lift considerably more, which is an obvious benefit. The Liebherr LTM 1650-8.1 is designed to deliver maximum performance.

The eight-axle all terrain is designed to deliver maximum flexibility and fast set-up times. The LTM 1650-8.1 travels with an axle load of 12 tonnes complete with its 54 metres of telescopic boom and the front supports. To minimise the set-up time, however, the rear supports are installed as a complete support box in a single hoist and connected using quick-release couplings.

As with all new developments over the last few years, Liebherr can offer the LTM 1650-8.1 with a very wide range of transport weights and axle load versions to ensure cost-effective global mobility for axle loads both above and below 12 tonnes.

As with its predecessor, the LTM 1500- 8.1, which dominated the large telescopic crane class for 20 years, Liebherr can supply the new crane with two telescopic boom lengths – 54 metres or 80 metres.

Customers can also buy both lengths and change them easily by replacing telescope section three and roller head with telescope sections three to five. In keeping with the concept to deliver the ultimate crane on eight axles, the load capacity increases, compared to its predecessor, are between 15 and 50 per cent, depending on whether the telescopic boom includes guying or not.

The standard VarioBase variable support base delivers additional increases in performance in the zone above the supports. The designers used the time-tested technology from the LTM 1500-8.1 for the Y-guying of the new LTM 1650-8.1 – although they upgraded the single-rope system to achieve better performance. The benefit of easy handling was retained.

The experts from Ehingen focused on achieving an easy, fast, and safe set-up process during the design process. A range of lattice booms enables it to work efficiently and with a fixed lattice boom from 6 to 62 metres in length, the telescopic boom can be extended particularly easily and quickly. It is attached at an angle of 0°, 10°, 20°, or 40°. As an option, the fixed boom can be adjusted between 0° and 38°.

The luffing lattice boom, with a length of 21 to 91 metres, delivers maximum height, radius, and performance. Both lattice booms can be attached to the 54-metre and the 80-metre telescopic boom.

High performance normally requires a large ballast radius, but often there is simply not enough space on sites. This means the ballast radius must be as small as possible. Liebherr meets this challenge with its VarioBallast innovation.

The new LTM 1650-8.1 has adopted the timetested system from the LTM 1450-8.1 where the ballast radius can be infinitely adjusted using a simple hydraulic slewing mechanism – on the LTM 1650-8.1 between 6.3 and 8.4 metres.

The new Liebherr eight-axle crane operates with a maximum ballast of 155 tonnes. To enhance economy, the ballast plates are compatible with the slabs from the LTM 1350-6.1, LTM 1400-7.1, LTM 1450-8.1, Liebherr’s nine-axle mobile cranes and the LR 1350/1 crawler crane. This means that all large LTM cranes have standard ballast slabs; a massive step forwards in logistics for crane operators.

An eight-cylinder Liebherr diesel engine in the undercarriage, which develops 505kW/677hp and torque of 3,160Nm provides the LTM 1650-8.1 with all the power it needs. The engine satisfies the new stage V emissions directive and can also be built to comply with the regulations that apply in countries outside of Europe, for example Tier 4f for the USA or stage III for low regulated countries.

The power is transferred to the crane axles using the innovative 12-speed ZF TraXon Torque gearbox. A torque converter enhances manoeuvring and starting. ECOdrive is a new feature, providing an additional eco mode that delivers enhanced drive properties, which both save fuel and reduce noise.

Meanwhile, Hillstart Aid makes starting on gradients easier. The intarder, a zero wear hydrodynamic brake integrated in the gearbox, acts as a retarder. In addition a Telma eddy current brake is standard.

The Liebherr single-engine concept has now proven itself in over 800 cranes and also features on the new LTM 1650-8.1. The superstructure is powered by a mechanical shaft. Gear shafts are routed from the distributor gear in the substructure via two mitre gears through the centre of the slewing ring to the pump distributor gear in the superstructure.

A mechanical shaft ensures a particularly high efficiency level and low engine speeds in the chassis engine provide sufficient power for crane work.

This ensures the economy of the new concept in terms of fuel consumption. The benefits of not having a separate superstructure engine include reduced maintenance work and lower weight. The lower weight can be used for loadbearing components, thus increasing the crane’s load capacity.

In ECOmode, the complete pump drive can be disconnected automatically when the engine is idling and then reconnected by the intelligent controller in a matter of seconds. Borger has been impressed with the performance of the Liebherr LTM 1650-8.1. “Everyone in the business has been impressed with the performance of the LTM 1650-8.1. We had high expectations from the beginning, but it has surpassed these expectations. Our crews think it is well ahead of its time with the new technology with many of its features and it is most definitely providing Borger Cranes with a significant competitive advantage.”

“It is not a difficult crane to mobilise and de-mobilise and it is not dissimilar to the LTM 1500-8.1 and the LTM 17509.1 in size, so we have allocated trailers which enable the crane to be sent to site in a timely manner.”

“The addition of the LTM 1650-8.1 has made a very positive contribution. It gives Borger Crane Hire and Rigging Services the additional capacity we needed within the heavy lift division, and it is providing customers with further confidence that we can always supply the right crane to solve whatever the challenges they might be facing,” said Borger.

 

Crane numbers continue to climb across the country

The Rider Levett Bucknall quarterly crane index has been released showing the number of cranes across Australia’s skylines continue to climb.

In Q1 2022, crane numbers across Australia increased by 95, a 13% increase on the last quarter. This is the highest number of cranes seen across Australia since the inaugural count, twenty editions ago.

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the construction industry has shown remarkable resilience.

Construction work done for the calendar year 2021 was up by 1.8%, (or $3.7B), across Australia compared to 2020.

Total residential work done increased by 4.9% (or $3.5B), and engineering activity also increased by 0.9%. Non-residential activity dropped by 1.4% (or $0.7B).

Strong growth in approval levels through 2021 saw a lift in the total value of approvals of 22% across the nation. Multi-level apartments (+21%), houses (+31%), health (+97%) and industrial (+27%), all significantly contributed to this increase strong crane growth was seen in all sectors with the non-residential sector recording another strong result recording its fourth record high over the past four editions of the Index.

With record levels of residential approvals across the country, the residential index rose for the first time in six editions.

The Federal Government’s residential construction stimulus measures assisted the economy, with the sector recording an increase of 63 cranes in this edition.

The residential index rose by 14%, the highest value since Q3 2019. Residential cranes now number 506, or 62% of all cranes across Australia.

Multi-storey residential developments have recovered from their fourth consecutive fall, mirroring the rise in building approvals and work done in this subsector during 2021.

The non-residential index continued to rise, recording 267 cranes—up 12% compared to Q1 2021.

This index result is another record level since the inception of the index. The industries hit hardest by the lockdowns during 2020 and 2021, namely tourism, retail and commercial, recorded rises in crane numbers in this edition.

Commercial rose by 10 cranes, hotels by one and retail by two. The civil and civic sectors saw a small drop with a loss of four cranes each. Recreation fell by two cranes. Health (up eight) and mixed use / other (up 18), both recorded increases in crane numbers across the country.

Since our last edition, 363 cranes were added to our skylines and 258 were removed. Sydney’s crane numbers increased by 53 (56% of the total increase recorded) to total 348 cranes. This represents 43% of all cranes across the country. Perth and Melbourne recorded double figure lifts in crane numbers of 18 and 12 respectively. On a percentage basis, both Adelaide and Perth recorded crane rises of more than 40% when compared to Q3 2021 results

Beokran takes delivery of Liebherr LTM 1150-5.3 mobile crane

Crane and special haulage contractor Beokran d.o.o. has taken delivery of the first Liebherr
LTM 1150-5.3 mobile crane in Serbia. The new 150 tonne crane will supplement the Belgrade- based company’s crane fleet between machines with lifting capacities of 130 and 200 tonnes. The 66 metre telescopic boom was an important criterion behind the decision.

Ehingen (Donau) (Germany), 9 May 2022 – “The new LTM 1150-5.3 fits into our crane fleet perfectly between our LTM 1200-5.1 and the LTM 1130-5.1. The 150 tonne machine is now the second most powerful crane in our fleet”, says Goran Karanovic, founder and owner of the company based in the Serbian capital. “The 66 metre telescopic boom is perfect for erecting tower cranes. That was a very important criterion for us when we decided to buy the new crane.”

Long, powerful telescopic boom

The telescopic boom on the new LTM 1150-5.3 is six metres longer than the one on its predecessor, the LTM 1130-5.1. At the same length of 60 metres, the new 5-axle crane can hoist 12 tonnes when fully raised – 1.5 tonnes more than its predecessor. When fully extended to 66 metres, the new crane has a lifting capacity of over 9 tonnes. That makes it perfect for erecting tower cranes and radio masts. Lattice extensions enable the Liebherr 150 tonne crane to achieve hook heights of up to 92 metres and radii of up to 72 metres. A 7 metre lattice section is used as a boom extension for this purpose along with a 10.8 to 19 metre double folding jib. The latter can be adjusted hydraulically between 0° and 40°.

The LTM 1150-5.3 is immediately ready for use when it reaches the site. This is because it carries nine tonnes of ballast whilst travelling at a gross weight of 60 tonnes and with an axle load of 12 tonnes. That means it can complete lots of jobs without requiring additional ballast transport vehicles. That saves time and money.

Goran Karanovic founded Beokran in 2007 with two small mobile cranes with lifting capacities of 8 and 20 tonnes. He continues: “As my budget was not enough for a new crane, I bought a used Liebherr LTM 1040/1. We renovated it, were successful and after a year we bought another LTM 1040/1 and an LTM 1060/2.” Today, Beokran employs 25 people and has eleven Liebherr mobile cranes with lifting capacities ranging from 40 to 200 tonnes as well as several special transport vehicles and loading cranes.

“Liebherr provides excellent service along with its Serbian partner, DS Inženjering. The high level of quality and service has minimised the downtimes of our cranes. Beokran builds on the Liebherr brand”, adds Karanovic.

Sarens installs the first prototype of the innovative Seawing

Contributing to a greener environment, Sarens installed the first ever prototype of the fully automated kite – Seawing on the RoRo vessel, Ville de Bordeaux in La Rochelle, France.

Seawing, developed by Airseas, is a 500m² parafoil which flies at an altitude of 200m and harnesses wind power to provide traction and is estimated to reduce fuel consumption and emissions from cargo ships by up to 40 percent.

The first prototype of the Seawing was installed in December 2021 on the Ro-Ro shipping commercial vessel, Ville de Bordeaux, which transports major aircraft components between France and the US. The Seawing will be tested on this vessel for six months starting January 2022.

Sarens SL3800 successfully completed the single-object lift and installation of the Seawing weighing 120T on the vessel in open water. The team had to address the following challenges before lifting:

  • Due to heavy wind on-site, the crew got only a four hour window to perform the lift.
  • The tides (± 6m) and waves affected the stability of the vessel.
  • Since it is the first prototype of the Seawing being installed, the exact centre of gravity and symmetry was unclear.
  • Limited ground bearing pressure of 7.5T/m2

The SL3800 and two layers of wooden mats were deployed to manage the ground bearing pressure. By providing extra rigging equipment and performing a test lift, Sarens was able to level the Seawing within a tolerance of 10cm. During a perfect wind-window, the crawler crane smoothly and precisely lifted and positioned the load.

According to the Project Manager, Koen Rooms, “Sarens is glad to perform this unique lift as part of the innovative technology developed to harness green energy.”

HÄRZSCHEL TAKES DELIVERY OF THE WORLD’S VERY FIRST TADANO AC 4.080-1 ALL TERRAIN CRANE

“It almost seems as though the Tadano AC 4.080-1 was made for us specifically – the cutting-edge crane is simply perfect for our fleet,” explains Manfred Härzschel, founder of the Cloppenburg-based crane company of the same name, while picking up his new crane. And he is right in saying that the new AC 4.080-1 is a state-of-the-art machine – from its compliance with EU Stage V emission standards, through the innovative IC‑1 Plus crane control system, all the way to an outstanding lifting capacity, the crane is clearly ahead of the pack. That is why the people at Härzschel did not wait long and instead made sure to get their hands on the world’s very first delivery of the brand new model, which was handed over by Tadano Sales Manager Thorsten Dietzel.

It is worth pointing out that the Tadano brand has been closely tied to Härzschel ever since the latter was founded in 1997. In fact, the company’s fleet is made up entirely of Tadano cranes. “The reliable and powerful cranes made by them have played an indispensable role in the successful growth and development of our company from the very beginning,” Manfred Härzschel reports.

Throughout the years, Härzschel has diversified its operations and currently also operates a high-bay warehouse with state-of-the-art equipment and around 2000 pallet storage locations for short-term and long-term storage that are available to both industrial and private customers. With its comprehensive service portfolio, which includes obtaining permits for road and transport operations, road securing service, construction site inspection and project support for industrial and construction companies Härzschel has earned a sterling reputation as a reliable partner for customers across the entire region. Härzschel has further extended its service range by the rental of truck-mounted aerial work platforms.

All-rounder for a broad range of applications

“The new Tadano AC 4.080-1 will be invaluable to us as we keep expanding our business activities in a number of areas,” says Manfred Härzschel confidently before adding that he is planning to use the new crane as a versatile all-rounder for private customers and industrial projects. And he did not wait long to stick to that plan: The Tadano AC 4.080-1 went to its first work site on the very first business day after it was delivered.

More autonomous machinery expected at Bauma

It is expected that at the Bauma exhibition in Munich this year, that autonomous and semi-autonomous technology will be on display and will be a focal point for many of the exhibitors, with the event running from October 24 to 30.

One exhibit that visitors will be able to observe is the results of a three year long study from Machines in construction 4.0 (MiC 4.0), which was established during the last Bauma exhibition by leading German industry associations, HDB and VDMA.

With 105 members from seven nations and 31 working groups, MiC 4.0 has examined aspects of digital construction technology including automation and semi-automation, machine connectivity, collaborative robotics and best practices for data usage.

Tim-Oliver Müller, director of the German construction industry association, HDB in an interview with construction Europe, he said that, while he doesn’t believe full autonomy in construction machines is likely to arrive in the near future, he is convinced that the construction industry could nevertheless benefit greatly from the use of digital technology.

“Such solutions have the potential for noticeable increases in efficiency and productivity,” he said.

The MiC group has been examining the standardisation of data and says simple information such as whether a machine is on or off is now being digitalised and standardised and is being utilised across manufacturers committed to the MiC 4.0 effort.

The organisation’s managing director, Dr Darius Soßdorf, said, “In any construction machine with an internal combustion engine that sends the signal ‘on’, the crankshaft of the engine rotates.”

Soßdorf claims that the joint approach implemented here is entirely new and unique.

This, along with other aspects of research undertaken by MiC 4.0 in the last three years will be presented at the innovation hall LAB0 at Bauma, where, along with presentations, there will be a physical demonstration.

Crane power for the climate revolution

Ten months ago, Austrian group Felbermayer started operations with its third Liebherr LR 11000. Since then, the crawler crane has been erecting Enercon wind turbines in Burgenland to the south-east of Vienna. Working with an LR 1750/2, the 1000 tonne crawler crane has erected a total of thirty wind turbines. Felbermayr will be sending another LR 11000 to the wind farms near the Austrian-Slovakian border in May to support the rest of the work. The erection work is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2022 at the latest.

Renewables are taking on an increasingly important role in supplying electricity within Europe. One of the main sectors in this respect is wind power. Austrian group Felbermayr and its cranes has been involved in this sector for decades and has developed into a major erection contractor for wind turbines, primarily in Austria and Eastern Europe. Felbermayr has 13 large cranes with lifting capacity classes of 600 tonnes and over, primarily working on the construction of these massive wind turbines. All these machines bear the Liebherr logo. Another modern LR 1800-1.0 crawler crane will roll out of the factory in Ehingen during May to expand Felbermayr’s impressive crane fleet.

One hot spot in the process of expanding wind energy is currently around half an hour’s drive to the south-east of Vienna, close to the Slovakian capital Bratislava. Two of Felbermayr’s large cranes in their blue corporate livery are currently operating here in Burgenland, the second main area of wind turbines in Austria alongside Lower Austria. The flagship of the crane fleet, an almost new LR 11000, and an

LR 1750/2 equipped with the more powerful SX boom version have been erecting wind turbines with hub heights of up to 160 metres for several months. The cranes hoist three steel tower segments onto the waiting concrete towers and then install the gondola, generator, hub and rotor blades. The work is always carried out when the wind conditions allow. For the LR 1750/2, the more powerful SX boom increases the maximum permitted windspeed from nine to ten metres per second to ensure less downtime during the assembly work. At this windy level of the area known as the Vienna Basin, waiting times which can last for weeks, are a major challenge to the crane crews and erection teams.

To ensure that the ambitious schedule is met (all the crane work should be completed by the end of the year), a second 1000 tonne crawler crane from the Austrian group will arrive shortly to help. The two LR 11000 cranes will then be in action at the same time just a few kilometres apart.

140 tonne hoists possible with a small amount of suspended ballast

“We are actually building slightly larger systems with a rating of 5.5 megawatts for which the cranes have to hoist the generator, for example, weighing around 130 tonnes to a height of 155 metres,” says Oliver Masch, Enercon’s General Project Manager at the site. “The gross load case is then slightly over 140 tonnes”, adds Jan Kürner, Supervisor and Site Manager at Felbermayr.

“To do this, the VarioTray with around 100 tonnes of ballast, which we call the “Baby Tray” because of its size, is extended to its maximum radius of 30 metres. The large suspended ballast pallet containing a further 450 tonnes of weight remains suspended throughout the erection process and is only required to raise or lower the boom, which measures over 180 metres in length.”

In view of the fact that waiting times are often quite long due to strong winds and powerful gusts, it is extremely important for the project management team that the crane operations go smoothly. “The time frames with wind speeds in which we can hoist and install components often open and close very quickly, sometimes even on an hourly basis”, explains Oliver Masch. That means that time-consuming ballast in work can be a real hindrance, of course. The highly flexible V-Frame means that this work is simply not necessary on the LR 11000 at the wind farm. Urgency is always the order of the day. “And if we actually have a crane defect at any time”, continues Oliver Masch, “we are very satisfied with the service we received from Liebherr. Generally, it is only a matter of hours. But the reliability of the Liebherr cranes is almost perfect anyway.”

Supervisor Jan Kürner is also extremely impressed with the LR 11000 and its great flexibility: “I operated the first crane of this type that we purchased in 2014 myself for several years. It is a modern crane and has a very compact design and is much easier and therefore also safer to set up older cranes. And now with the V-frame – it truly is a top quality crane.”

“V-Frame means that the crane is no longer the limiting factor”

So when it really becomes necessary, the disconnecting derrick ballast and the hydraulically adjustable frame make it possible to work at very high speed. Or as Gernold Mailänder, the operator of the
LR 11000, puts it: “The crane is no longer the limiting factor for getting on with the job. When the wind speeds are suitable, I can position one component after another without having to adjust the ballast in between. That means I can complete a wind turbine in just three or four days.” The experienced expert sits satisfied in his large operator’s cab. “The V-Frame is tip top. There is absolutely nothing to be said against it.”

Heavy loads, mega transports, massive infrastructure and special projects – the Felbermayr Holding GmbH portfolio contains all this and more. The company has expanded massively, above all in the states of Austria, over the last 30 years. The Austrian company’s empire now encompasses 75 sites in 19 countries throughout Europe.

 

Importance of tyre monitoring systems for mobile cranes

LSM Technologies wants to bring into focus the importance of Tyre Monitoring Systems and their TyreGuard for heavy vehicles within Australian industry and especially the crane sector.

LSM (life saving mitigation) Technologies market a complete range of Tyre Monitoring System (TMS) for any vehicle / machine with pneumatic tyres and Peter Woodford, Engineering Director and CEO explains how a robust TMS is a proven mitigation control that can both predict and prevent potentially catastrophic events occurring on all heavy vehicles- and specifically cranes.

“There are two types of cranes to be considered where tyres can suffer differing (and the same) modes of failure, these are larger mobile all terrain heavy lift cranes and articulated pick & carry cranes” said Woodford.

“Larger mobile all terrain cranes are used in stationary lifts and utilise outriggers for crane stability. Tyre failures are therefore usually related to traveling at higher speeds on open roads where the tyres can be subjected to pyrolysis resulting in wheel well fires, tyre explosions and blow outs.”

“Apart from external reasons such as an electrical hazards, (eg. overhead power lines, electrical storm strikes), the most common causes of pyrolysis are:

 

  • Exceeding tyre specifications excessive speed and / or load.
  • Under pressurisation.
  • Overuse or locked brakes.
  • A combination of both.

 

“Enormous amounts of energy can be released by a tyre explosion, often leading to significant equipment damage, serious injuries or fatalities, especially when travelling at high speeds,” said Woodford.

In 2018, the Tasmanian branch of the Crane Industry Council of Australia (CICA) released a crane safety bulletin relating to tyre fires, pyrolysis, explosions (Crane Safety Bulletin #235) warning of these dangerous conditions.

“Pick & carry cranes they can also suffer the same tyre failure as for larger mobile cranes when travelling at speed on the open road,” continued Woodford.

“However, where they differ is that pick & carry cranes do not use outriggers, they are articulated and also travel (carry) with the load. Consequently, crane stability is dependent solely on the crane’s suspension and tyres.”

“Recent accidents validate that ensuring correctly inflated tyres is not only critical before a lift (static position) but also during travel, especially with a load,” he said.

CICA (Crane Industry Council of Australia) Position Paper on articulated crane operator Requirements CICA-PA-0009-B (17/08/2015) recognises that corrected inflated tyres are critical for stabilisation / control for pick & carry cranes (articulated cranes).

“A robust and qualified TMSystem provides alarms relating to the condition of the crane tyres. These alarms can relate to the tyre being over or under pressure, high temperature, etc.” said Woodford.

LSM TyreGuard TMSystems are tested and certified to SAE j2848 & J1455 Standards and in Australia for Dangerous Goods (DG) Transport.

“LSM TyreGuard TMSystems have proven to be a robust technology for over 15 years here in Australia. They have been purpose built to function efficiently in the most extreme environmental and operational situations  providing the highest levels of accuracy and reliability for crane tyres, cranes, and their operators,” said Woodford.

LSM TyreGuard In-Cab Display provides the operator with live tyre pressure and temperature information with the audio and visual alerts so as they can take immediate action.

“LSM FSM ®Fleet Safety (Tracking) Manager Telematics online system is capable of remote monitoring providing live online alerts, analysis and reporting fast accurate tyre management information, ensuring compliance,” said Woodford.

In recent years Industry regulators and workplace authorities have recognised that TMSystems are a critical safety mitigation control that saves injury and lives.

For example the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy (DNRM) released their updated Recognised Standard 13, Tyre, Wheel, and Rim Management November 2016 which states:

“TMSystems beneficial in keeping the tyre pressure within its stated pressure envelope. Some monitoring systems also include temperature monitoring of the tyre air chamber. The capability to inform the vehicle operator (by remote sensing) of a tyre pressure outside the envelope can ensure swift action to correct the situation or prevent tyre damage.

The DNRM Standard 13 also references The Coroner’s recommendation that industry investigate and implement remote or wireless tyre pressure sensing equipment to allow operators to measure tyre pressures from within the cabin.

The introduction of TM Systems to haulage fleet tyres on mine site vehicles was recommended by The Queensland Coroner following a fatality caused by a tyre explosion.

Also the Department of Mines & Petroleum also released their new Tyre Safety Guidelines – Tyre Monitoring Systems 10-Sep-15. Both of these Standards / Guidelines advocate the use of Tyre Monitoring Systems to monitor Tyre Pyrolysis (Fires, etc).

The Mines Safety Director stated, “There have been a number of fatalities in the mining industry directly related to not understanding or addressing the risks associated with such tyres. They are dangerous not only because of their size and mass, but also because of the pressures and combustible materials involved.”

“LSM TyreGuard TMSystems integration is also part of our LSM Sentinel® (pat.pend.) VSS Vehicle Safety System mitigation control portfolio. LSM Sentinel® is a unique set of other vehicle OH&S mitigation engineering controls, committed to providing greater safety and savings for our customers- not just for TMSystems.” Said Woodford.

“All too often, people are put in harms’ way as a result of tyre failure. With today’s technology this is completely avoidable,” he said.

For more information see LSM Technologies web site:  lsm.com.au

 

World-first electric-powered heavy transport completed

Mammoet has achieved a major milestone in the development of sustainable heavy lifting and transport – undertaking the replacement of a production vessel at a chemical plant in the Netherlands using purely electric power.  

 

The Shell facility produces feedstock for a range of everyday applications including medical equipment, car components and cellphones. When a key production vessel needed to be replaced, the customer was keen to look at how this could be done with the lowest possible environmental impact. 

 

Seeking ways in which new technology can help to reduce – and eventually eradicate – the carbon footprint of projects, Mammoet has explored many possible solutions in recent years. One such focus has been a partnership with Scheuerle to transition its SPMT fleet from diesel to renewable energy.  

 

Whilst electric technology is nothing new for domestic vehicles, the sheer force SPMTs are required to deliver in moving heavy items has presented significant barriers to finding an equivalent solution. But thanks to extensive research and testing this has now become a reality.  

 

The ePPU was used with four axle lines of SPMT operating in an extremely tight area of the existing plant, which meant that there were only a few meters in which to maneuver the existing vessel out and drive the new one into position.  

 

In fact, space was so limited that not all SPMT lines could be positioned beneath the outgoing vessel, meaning that it needed to be secured above the front two axle lines of SPMT, with the ePPU acting as a counterweight to balance the vessel as it was transported. A crane was then used to remove the old vessel and lower its replacement onto the SPMT in the same position. This was then moved back into place ready to be installed and commissioned.   

 

Using the ePPU delivered important benefits for the project. Ludo Mous, Operations Director at Mammoet Europe, explains: 

 

“The ePPU is a really important step in how we support our customers with decarbonizing projects. But in this case, the benefits were not limited only to a lower carbon footprint. With work taking place in a highly confined area, we would have been highly conscious of the emissions generated by a typical diesel PPU, and would need to carefully manage operatives’ exposure to it. By using an electric model, we removed this issue completely, whilst also creating a much quieter working environment.” 

 

The successful application of the ePPU here signals just the start of an exciting development for Mammoet and the wider industry. Although there is still work to be done to ensure electric power is sufficient for use in larger scale SPMT projects, the technology is now proven in use and ready to be rolled out across a broader range of work around the world. 

 

Mous concludes: 

 

“We were extremely pleased that the ePPU performed as we expected, delivering a low-carbon solution for our customer. We expect demand for it to be high, in particular for projects that are looking for more sustainable options or where exhaust emissions must be kept to a minimum for safety reasons, such as civil projects taking place within tunnels or work inside nuclear facilities.” 

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