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Enerpac technology advances bridge launching safety & cost-efficiency

Supplier: Enerpac By: Warren Baltineshter
11 March, 2016

Advanced technology bridge launching and crane stability assistance systems being introduced to Australasia by Enerpac are engineered to enhance the precision, safety and cost-efficiency of public and private infrastructure construction.

The compact PLC controlled high-pressure (700 bar) hydraulic technologies – engineered to reduce manpower, hazards and complexity on major and minor projects – include globally unique spindle bar systems, Enerlauncher incremental launching systems, heavy lift strand jack systems and SyncHoist high precision hydraulic load hoisting and positioning systems for cranes.

The PLC controlled precision systems – which use globally proven 700 bar high pressure hydraulics to pack greater power into more compact tools – complement Enerpac's wide experience in Australasia with synchronous and heavy lift technology proven in Australasia in public bridging projects as well as by resource, transport, ports, infrastructure and electrical generation industries.

The launch systems complement bridge lifting, shifting and nose recovery technology as well as maintenance systems for steel, concrete, wooden and composite road and rail structures, including the latest EVO synchronous lifting systems. Synchronous technology involves multiple sensor-equipped cylinders controlled by one person at a single point, where the status of every lifting cylinder is constantly monitored and displayed. This radically improves the simplicity, accuracy and safety of multiple cylinder lifts formerly involving whole teams of engineering staff spread around a job.

Enerpac's latest bridge launch and crane assistance technology includes:

Spindle Bar Bridge System

  • Enerpac's spindle bar bridge launch system – which is suitable for uphill and downhill bridge launching – integrates sets of in-line hollow plunger cylinders through which steel bars are inserted for pushing, pulling and braking. The system – incorporating bars in standard lengths of six metres – is unique to Enerpac, says Enerpac Australasia Integrated Solutions Manager Mr Warren Baltineshter. Enerpac Integrated Solutions' expertise is dedicated to lifting, shifting and manoeuvring some of the world's most challenging objects and structures. These include the world's highest viaduct, the Millau Viaduct in France, which, with a mast summit of 343 metres, is twice as high as the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Enerlauncher System

  • The Enerlauncher hydraulic bridge launching system uses PLC control to safely and precisely lift, push and steer huge bridge sections into place.  Enerlauncher is fully automatic, with synchronous incremental hydraulic tandem launching utilising a lifting bed designed for rigidity and security. The system delivers a total lift force of 1600 tons a unit and pushing force of 600 tons, says Mr Baltineshter. The main advantage of the Enerlauncher System is that the synchronized hydraulic movements allow full control over the bridge sections during launching. Integrated PLC-control over two or more Enerlauncher Systems working simultaneously allows steering of the bridge.

Strand Jack Systems

  • Strand jack systems exert pulling force like an enormously powerful and precise linear winch. 

Strand jacks incorporate bunches of steel cables (strands) which are guided through main hydraulic pulling cylinders complemented by smaller integrated mini jacks to provide braking. Pulling and braking force is achieved by hydraulically operating the main jack and both mini-jacks alternately. The power and precision of stand jacking has been demonstrated in Australian resources and infrastructure projects, including lifts of 800-1400 ton ball mills. These units were hoisted and positioned on their pedestals with an Enerpac PLC controlled lift system capable of safely positioning huge loads to accuracies within fractions of a millimetre. The same precision is highly applicable to bridge projects, says Mr Baltineshter.

Synchoist System

  • Enerpac's SyncHoist system is a high precision hydraulic load hoisting and positioning system engineered to enhance crane performance and safety while reducing costs compared with conventional load positioning methods.

The system offers load manoeuvring vertically and horizontally using one crane, while reducing the risk of damage from oscillations of wire rope due to sudden crane starts and stops.

Employing intelligent hydraulics to monitor and guide compact but powerful 700 bar double-acting push-pull cylinders integrated into four lifting points above loads, the SyncHoist SHS system is also used for pre-programmed positioning, tilting and aligning of loads and for counterweighting and determining their centre of gravity.

Available in system load capacities of 240, 320 and 440 tons, with system reach of 1500mm from each lifting point, SyncHoist offers very high accuracies (+/- 1,0mm), less dependence on weather conditions and vastly improved operating speed and worker safety.

The Enerpac SyncHoist system for cranes is a member of the Enerpac synchronous lifting family, different members of which have been employed globally on jobs as diverse as lifting the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, manoeuvring the roof of the Beijing Olympics Birds Nest Building, hoisting mining mills in Western Australia and re-levelling multi-storey buildings after the Christchurch earthquakes.

Now being introduced to Australasia, the system is backed globally by the expertise and experience of the Enerpac Integrated Solutions Team lead locally by Mr Baltineshter.

Mr Baltineshter has completed training in the Netherlands and Spain, where he enhanced his experience in the usage of Enerpac gantries, skidding systems, strand jack systems and EVO synchronous technology.

EVO is a new generation Enerpac synchronous lifting system that replaces manual control of hydraulic heavy lifting with PLC control of multiple cylinder lifts, offering accuracy, safety and productivity benefits for precision lifting. In addition to safety and precision, time saving is another advantage of synchronous lifting.

The process does not have to be stopped after any incremental value, checked, manually re-measured and corrected. The EVO-System carries out these actions during the entire lifting process, even with low lifting or lowering speeds. Depending on the application, time savings up to 60 percent can be achieved

Enerpac technologies range from new generation lifting, pumping, fastening and maintenance tools, through to entire Enerpac Integrated Solutions projects dedicated to lifting, shifting and manoeuvring some of the world's heaviest and most challenging objects and structures.