Global heavy lift and logistics specialist Sarens is replacing two century-old rail bridges to help modernise France’s national rail network.
Commencing the project in early July 2023, the Belgian company dismantled the two “century-old” rail bridges weighing 468 tonnes each using its SGC-90 crane, with work to install two new bridge sections beginning in August.
As the project is located between a busy road and the railway track itself, navigating space and low ground bearing pressure were logistical problems that needed to be overcome. The fully electric and silent ring crane SGC-90 – known as “Little Celeste” – was the crane of choice for the project.
The crane was transported from Indonesia to the Port of Rouen in France, before heading to Massy with the help of 220 supporting trucks. Using a Tadano CC2800 and AC100, a Liebherr LR1200, the crane was configured with 100 metres of main boom over an eight-week period.
“It was very challenging to assemble the crane in the limited area available. The ground was prepared with mats to adjust the ground bearing pressure,” said Sarens’ Senior Project Manager Dirk Vinck. “To maintain safety during the project, heavy tackle, weighing a total of 260T, was used to connect old and new bridges to the crane hook.”
The first phase of the project involved the SGC-90 lifting the two bridge sections and setting them down onto SPMTs, where they were transported to an area to be taken to the scrapheap.
The second phase, starting in early August, involves lifting two new pre-assembled bridges weighing 1375 tonnes and 949 tonnes each.
The electric SGC-90, added to Sarens’ fleet in 2020, holds a maximum capacity of 99,000 tonnes, can be configured with a boom length of up to 130 metres, and holds a ring diameter of 35 metres.
Capable of being hooked up to an electrical grid rather than relying on a traditional fuel source, the SGC-90 can also produce its own energy by recovering and reusing the electricity it generates each time it lowers a load, resulting in a 40% reduction in energy consumption.