Liebherr supplies Mediaco with lattice boom cranes

French company Mediaco has purchased two used lattice boom cranes from manufacturer Liebherr.

The cranes, an eight-year-old 1600/2 crawler crane and a nine-year-old LG 1750 mobile crane, have been repaired and repainted, with new signwriting and warranty.

Mediaco Managing Director Alexandre-Jacques Vernazza said purchasing used cranes delivered the company a range of benefits, with shorter lead times and lower investment.

Liebherr cranes are renowned for retaining their value. Purchasing used cranes direct from the manufacturer also gives us security,” he said.

Mediaco ordered a retrofit kit comprising the derrick ballast with VarioTray when it purchased the LG 1750.

The LG 1750 began work after delivery on the Grand Paris infrastructure project, one of the largest construction sites in Europe, while on of the first jobs the LR 1600/2 was implemented in was the installation of a 140 tonnes bridge in Blois, around 200 kilometres south-west of Paris.

To help meet Mediaco’s needs, Liebherr retrofitted derrick ballast with VarioTray for both of the cranes. The LG 1750 was also supplied with an additional winch and modified ballast supports to ensure 12.5 tonne and 10 tonne slabs can be used.

Liebherr Sales Manager Used Cranes Bernd Rechtsteiner said crane customers who order machines from Liebherr can obtain finance more easily, as banks and leasing companies appreciate the security the company offers as a manufacturer.

“Furthermore, the investment is lower than for a new crane and the cranes are generally available more quickly,” Rechtsteiner said.

A new remote load-management system designed to improve safety in crane operations and boost productivity has been delivered to a national crane hire company.

New remote load management device to improve crane safety

A new remote load-management system designed to improve safety in crane operations and boost productivity has been delivered to a national crane hire company.

The system is the world’s first remote load management system, according to Brisbane-based developer Verton Australia.

It removes the need for human held taglines to control suspended loads, significantly improving safety and efficiency for crane operators. The system can be used across all sizes and industries, including engineering, construction, general cargo shipping, resource development, defence and mining.

The system uses a single pair of gyroscopic modules and a handheld remote controller. The unit is able to manage loads of up to 20 tonnes and is attached to the load, with it orientation controlled with the remote.

Universal Cranes is the first company to use the system and expects to dramatically reduce the risk of accidents by ensuring no human contact is required for managing suspended loads.

Universal Cranes Group Managing Director Albert Smith said crane operations currently still require workers to collect and guide the taglines, which increases the risk of serious or fatal workplace incidents.

Verton Founder and Chief Technology Officer Stanley Thomson said the system would increase productivity and profitability of businesses operating or relying on cranes and hoists for orientating heavy loads.

“The R-series will reduce hook time (the time each load needs to be suspended in the air) by 50 per cent or more and the overall cycle time by 25 per cent,” he said.

“This is the biggest improvement in productivity since the crane was invented. We estimate that implementation of the R-series will save worksites millions of dollars over its lifetime with payback possible within a year. These are significant advantages in our increasingly competitive industries.”

Verton CEO Trevor Bourne said the company has received federal and Queensland Government financial support to develop the unit.

“This world-first technology will revolutionise suspended load-management for the transport, construction and mining industries and also many other sectors,” he said.

Zoomlion opens major tower crane smart factory

Chinese equipment manufacturer Zoomlion has officially opened what is says is the world’s largest tower crane smart factory.

Zoomlion began construction of the factory in 2016 and invested around AUD $160 million in an aim to become first-class in China and advanced in the world, abiding by Industry 4.0 standards.

The facility is a four in one tower crane smart factory, with intelligent application, logistics and inspection technology, while being environmentally friendly.

There are more than 12 automated production lines, 10,000 sensors, 100 industrial robots, 35 unmanned vehicles, and 16 processing centres with an integrated manufacturing execution system (MES) to improve efficiency.

The MES system consists of four levels, a production line and equipment layer, production management and control layer, system data layer and decision support layer.

One standard section is manufactured every 10 minutes, with one lifting arm produced every 90 minutes on average.

Three new types of smart product were also launched at the opening of the factory, the T6515, T6250 and T7525 flat-top tower cranes, manufactured from the production line in the smart factory

The opening of the tower crane smart factory also marks the start of the company’s 10 billion project, where ZOOMLION will strives to double its sales in 2019, helped by the new smart factory.

Palfinger has revealed its financial results for the year so far, reporting a 10 per cent increase in revenue, with a record-breaking target in sight.

Dana acquires SME Group

Dana Incorporated has completed its acquisition of SME Group which designs, engineers and manufactures low voltage motors and inverters for construction, materials handling and agriculture vehicles.

SME’s low-voltage AC induction and synchronous reluctance motors, inverters and controls are primarily designed to meet the evolution of electrification in off-highway equipment.

US-based Dana expects the acquisition of SME Group, headquartered in Arzignano, Italy, will significantly expand its electrified product portfolio.

Dana CEO, Jim Kamsickas, said the acquisition enhances Dana’s ability to address the electrification and hybridisation needs of its customers, while also increasing the potential for incremental content per vehicle.

“SME’s exceptional electric motor and inverter products, which largely support off-highway applications, are highly complementary to the technologies we acquired with TM4, which are predominately focused on light- and commercial-vehicle applications,” Kamsickas said.

Dana Chief Technology Officer, Christophe Dominiak, said Dana is equipped to provide complete e-Propulsion systems that balance the demands for performance, power density and weight.

“The addition of SME’s low-voltage induction motors rounds out our already robust offering of high-voltage permanent magnet motors and enables us to deliver a complete range of electrified solutions for our customers,” Dominiak says.

The privately-owned SME Group employs more than 100 people and operates in China, Germany, Canada and Italy.

Dana expects to further strengthen its electrification capabilities through the anticipated acquisition of the Drive Systems segment of the Oerlikon group, which the company said in a release will allow it to provide products for a broad range of hybrid and electric vehicle configurations. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019.

Cranes in place for Metro Tunnel excavation works

The first of three gantry cranes has been installed at the site of the future Parkville Station as part of the Victorian Government’s $11 billion Melbourne Metro Tunnel project.

Crews have begun digging the 270-metre long and 30-metre-wide station box around 30 metres below Grattan street, between Leicester Street and Royal Parade.

Excavators will initially dig three metres deep, as a temporary deck of concrete and steel is built at surface level to limit the impacts of noise and dust.

When the excavation reaches around 15 metres deep, trucks will no longer be able to enter, meaning gantry cranes will be used to lower buckets through holes in the deck to collect rock and soil.

Cranes will then lower the material into trucks inside two acoustic sheds at surface level.

Each 20-metre-high crane will remove up to 35 tonnes of rock and soil from beneath the deck, while also lowering construction equipment and materials down onto the site.

All three cranes are expected to be installed by the end of February 2019.

More than 200,000 cubic metres of rock and soil is expected to be removed from the site in 2019, equivalent to around 80 Olympic swimming pools. Once complete, the station construction and fit out will begin underground.

More than 550 piles have been installed at Parkville to form the underground support structure for excavation to safely start.

The first train is expected to run through the tunnel in 2025.

Victorian Acting Premier James Merlino said significant work is ramping up at the site of the station.

“The Metro Tunnel will make travelling to the renowned Parkville health, education and research precinct easier than ever before, slashing travel times by up to 20 minutes in each direction,” he said.

Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the government is working on providing Victorians with project to improve transport infrastructure.

“We are undertaking a monumental engineering feat as part of the Metro Tunnel, including constructing new train stations deep beneath some of Melbourne’s busiest areas,” she said.