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E4/4 system applications

The E4/4 system is applied in two areas: For extremely long travel distances and for unsupported, side-mounted application. The famous "tongue and groove" between two chain links enables this feature. Compression forces and stability are enhanced, whereby the power of resistance against wet and rough weathering is increased. Special roller chain links make E4/4 real specialists for long travels. The undercut design - the simple mounting in specified grooves similarly enables the outstanding ESD/ATEX performance. The chain links are tightly linked to each other, because electricity can flow through them when in contact with each other (Please note: This is valid only for the special conductive material igumid ESD and is not applicable for the standard series in this catalog).

Typical industrial sectors and applications:

RTG, quayside cranes, many other types of cranes, composting plants, plaster, concrete, chemical and mineral plants, as well as agricultural plants, machine tools: Unsupported, side-mounted applications in construction machines, ESD applications, heavy machinery, steel works, shipyards, welding plants.

Overview of E4/4 applications:

Hot dip galvanising

Energy chain and plastic trough made from chemically-resistant plastic from igus® have been successfully in operation at a hot dip galvanising plant for years.

Energy chain in open-air storage facility for alumina production

Design and installation of a roller energy chain for outdoor use on a bauxite stockpile - an environment with extremely harsh ambient conditions.

Astronomical telescope

This telescope can be rotated from its original position in both directions by 270° each.

Coal silo

Lower weight and space requirements than alternative solutions for conveying coal.

Collision Avoidance

These applications test systems that will make driving cars safer.

X-ray device

This flexible system can take x-ray images without moving the patient.

Coal transport system

The motors in this system need a large number of cables.

Reversible-head trimming shears

Quick tool changes permit continuous machining of metal bands on both sides.

Material treatment

This application prepares raw material for the subsequent production of screws and rivets.


Lighter components for aviation applications by avoiding separators.

Zinc electrolysis, bathing halls

The sulfur fumes generated by the electrolysis are highly corrosive and corrode the customer's system. igus® products withstand these extreme conditions.

Rocket launch site

The igus® products used are designed for mobile applications in such a way that it features a long life and functions absolutely reliably.

Taconite mine

The next long distance with a plastic chain: 550 m.

The longest travel with plastic energy chain

e-chain® travel of 615 m exceeds the longest so far in the port of Singapore.

Discharging station for crude metal/metal scrap

Almost maintenance-free solution in a discharge station for crude metal/metal scrap, thanks to the energy supply system with plastic products from igus®.

Composting plant

Heat, abrasive dirt, high atmospheric moisture: These are only some of the ambient conditions in a composting plant.

Ship unloader

441 m travel: Reduction of tensile forces by about 75%.

Streetcar switches

The applied material repels chips with temperatures up to 850° C without leaving a trace.

Ship loader

Since the ship loader started operations in 2000, no troubles, either mechanical or in the cables, have occurred in the energy chain area.

Long travel

Long travels no problem at all: Travels over 200m

Harbor crane

Circular motion mounted on the side in a harbor crane.

Automotive industry

Gliding, side-mounted application in the automotive industry.

Space-saving solution

Zigzag solutions implemented quickly and economically without special parts with the e-chains® of the E4/4 system

Unsupported application

Stability guaranteed even in air: Unsupported "side-mounted" application.

Standing installation

High accelerations also possible in "standing" installation.

Wood industry

The igus® preassembled energy chains create a lasting, low-wear connection to the tools.

Fairground rides

The demands on the facility are very high. All parts of the elevator are permanently exposed to wind and weather, and additional centrifugal forces act upon the parts by the 180° rotation.

Tile factories

Extreme stressing from tile dus in the building material industry.

Lignite quarrying

The wagon makes a 180° turn and empties into the coal bunker. The energy chain secures the energy supply of the rotating device.

Offshore industry

Tube handling plant provides an igus® plastic e-chain®. e-chain® ensures high stability and reliability in pipehandling.

Loading and unloading facility

Rigorous requirements imposed on the energy supply: Cycle times and narrow bend radii are a considerable strain on energy supply and lines.


For the equipment made for the film "Chrysalis", only high quality materials were used.

OpenHydro tidal turbine

A plastic chain makes any kind of maintenance on the open sea obsolete; a conventional metal chain would not be adequate for the combination of technical, climatic and mechanical requirements.

Handling system ”roboLoop“

The ”roboLoop“ system itself offers manyways to optimise the fabrication sequences.

Adhesive resin system

In the case of this adhesive resin system, a lifting platform moves upwardto a height three or four times a day to empty barrels with a volume ofapprox. 200 litres.

Spray-painting robot

In this application in a painting robot, the ATEX properties of the energy supply system are of primary importance.

Pallet changer

In the case of this application, the worksafety was increased by integrating theenergy supply system into the body of thepallet changer.

Palletising system

This energy chain in the palletising system of a dairy is subject toextreme load with more than 5,000 strokes a day.

Piling and drilling rigs

The driven boring machine produces extremevibrations and heavy soiling duringthe work process.

Saw mill

Even sawdust does not constitute any problem for igus® e-chains®.

Tunnel boring machine

This machine moves deeply through the earthand is used to drill tunnels using the excavationby mining technique.

Dismantling tool

Flexible chainflex® CF9 control cables and various hoses in zig-zag application.

Maintenance-free operation for 8 years

The energy chain employed in 2000 runs smoothly.

Plastic e-chains® replace steel versions

After six months they used to be finished; finally no more failure thanks to plastic e-chains®.

Indoor and outdoor cranes

Outdoor cranes must withstand harsh weather conditions. Indoor cranes also work under alternating moisture influences with simultaneous extremely high temperatures.


Eight gantry cranes connected in series travel a total length of 180 m with plastic energy chains.

Hydraulic lifter in airplane hangar

Hydraulic working platforms in an airplane hangar for the Airbus A380 in Singapore are equipped with igus® e-chains®.

Conveyor unit of coal excavator

The winner of this year’s golden vector is also the longest travel ever to be realised with plastic energy chains in the world.

Crane applications

In this case, two different crane applications have been realised using the igus® energy chain series 5050 from the E4/4 range

Wind tunnel scales

These scales which are used for tests in the wind tunnel can be turned through 180° in both directions away from their original position.

Further interesting applications from extremely diverse areas can be found here.