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Sure to function even during typhoons

Shanghai: Energy supply systems for shipyard cranes successfully in operation since six years

The registered office of the Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. (SWS) is situated at the south harbor of the Pudong region of Shanghai, at the mouth of River Yangtze, right opposite the port area of Changxingdao. The Chinese shipbuilder SWS is one of the ten largest shipbuilders in the world. In this gigantic industrial area, there are three shipyard cranes at work at present, which correspond in their dimensions to 30-story buildings. The energy and data supply to the gigantic lifting parts is implemented via plastic energy chain systems from igus®.

The energy supply systems function reliably under the most difficult ambient conditions. Because, the mouth of River Yangtze is scourged by lashing wind, rain and salt water. The two-month annual rainy season holds the danger from corrosion.

180 m travel, 30 kg/m weight:

180 m travel, 30 kg/m weight: Since its installation in 2001, the igus® energy chain system is intact despite the hard weather conditions. Even a typhoon could not interrupt its operation.

Plastic roller energy chains for reduction of wear and push-pull forces

Guide-trough system for long travels


The energy chain systems from igus® installed in 2001 has been operating without interruptions from the first day with fill weights of 30 kg/m over 180 m travel. It didn't break down even during a typhoon the year before the last. Since its delivery, the energy chain system from igus® has been running without any problems and requires only minimum maintenance.

SWS in addition uses chainflex® cables from igus®. Normal ship cables are also used in parts of the equipment. These however crack fast and are prone to breaking. The bending-resistant chainflex® cables on the contrary have had no failures in the past years.

Shipyard Crane

Condition monitoring system from igus® monitors the push-pull forces of the energy chains online.

Condition monitoring for large-scale energy chain systems

In this large-scale system, a "push pull force detection" (PPDS) system from igus® is installed for condition monitoring. "PPDS" monitors the push-pull forces of the energy chains online to prevent damages to the system as well as failures through preventive maintenance or remote intervention. The system operating round the clock compares data of the operating chain system with the set values four times per second. If the energy supply system fails once, the PPDS sends out an alarm so that the crane trolleys can be shut down.
Determined malfunctions can be automatically conveyed by SMS or email to a preprogrammed computer so that immediate action can be taken. The data in the system storage can be traced back up to three months for accident analysis.

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