Runway condition influences how well a crane moves on its rails, and profoundly affects the usability and lifetime of the crane and its travelling machineries. A runway in poor condition reduces crane performance and can create serious safety risks.
Left undetected, rail alignment defects can lead to serious problems, which can create downtime and loss of production, while they are taken offline to be fixed. The best way to rectify these issues is to identify the warning signs early and prevent it from occurring in the first place.
Periodically gathering data about the condition of the runway is key to sustaining peak crane performance, and the latest version of Konecranes’ RailQ does exactly that, delivering accurate alignment information on the rails and expert recommendations on any corrective actions that are needed.
One of the major benefits of Konecranes’ RailQ service is that it’s a one-stop-shop. Instead of approaching a surveyor, an engineer and a data analysis expert, Konecranes can do all three components themselves, and in most cases, can present the results within 24 hours.
This quick turnaround helps to minimise downtime and optimise maintenance programmes for busy companies that rely on their cranes for production.
“The main aim of the RailQ is to assist the customers with their rail alignments and rail elevation in order to help get the maximum life out of their equipment,” said Joseph Cefai, consultation services manager for Konecranes Australia.
“Over the years we’ve done a few updates just to smoothen out the system better and offer a more accurate reading that takes away the discrepancies and the unknowns from the equation.”
RailQ consists of highly accurate measuring equipment, a methodology developed by Konecranes and its own proprietary data analysis and reporting software, KC Trail.
As soon as the survey is complete, a three-dimensional image of the runway/rail system is supplied to the customer with a special 3D viewer that allows the customer to examine the geometry in dynamic three-dimensional form.
RailQ can help identify a number of common problems that contribute to additional wear and safety concerns, including:
- Rails may be misaligned or worn;
- Incorrect rail span to crane design span;
- Rail fasteners may be missing;
- Rail pads may be worn;
- The runway structure may be uneven due to column settlement, overloads or impacts; and
- Rail/runway elevation errors.
The analysis from a trained Konecranes inspector will recommend corrective actions and identify the most cost-effective solutions to ensure ongoing reliability and safety of the crane.
The benefits to the customer includes:
- Accurate information on the condition and alignment of the rail;
- Reliable results through systemic application of technology by skilled people; and
- Conducting a RailQ analysis requires less time than a traditional survey.
“Of course, you can never really stay still in the R&D space, but I am very comfortable with where we are currently with our RailQ survey deliverables.
“If we can find more ways to improve on the technology to better benefit the businesses and customers that use it then we will always be looking into implementing those changes.
“I believe we are on the top of our game with RailQ.”