Rough terrain cranes' manufacturers are increasingly planning to promote their equipment to greenfield and brownfield projects with undulated ground conditions. Buoyed by the emerging requirements from metro and other infra projects, manufacturers foresee a host of business opportunities for the cranes that come with greater maneuverability required for bigger crammed job sites. P.P. Basistha finds out varied new and improvised offerings the manufacturers are making available.
Rough Terrain (RT) cranes are usually meant for job sites with unstable ground conditions. The inherent features of these cranes to remain stable make them suitable for the jobs on sites with rough terrains. For instance, they are suitable for refinery and thermal power projects, and a host of infrastructure projects involving metro railway construction, jetty and bridge projects coming up on reclaimed land.
The better ground clearance of the cranes makes them ideal to work on unstable job sites. Further, since many of the infrastructure or industrial projects are based on modular design concepts, the ability of the cranes to deliver better traction makes them suitable to move with the precast concrete girders or individual equipments of varied capacities within the sites.
Taking note of the emerging application possibilities and safety stipulations being laid by project developers, manufacturers are offering newer products of varied capacities along with carrying out engineering improvisations in their cranes.
"The crane is suitable for bigger size energy-related projects and mining sites. Outside Japan, there are requirements of mobile cranes with higher lifting capacities and longer boom lengths able to lift heavier load at longer radius. GR 1450 EX suits the requirements appropriately. The crane can work smoothly while manoeuvring through tight spaces at crammed job sites. Apart from highest lifting capacity in its class, the 3-axle carrier crane also scores on fuel efficiency and safety.
Introduction of GR 1450 allows Tadano to broaden its offerings of rough terrain cranes. Tadano offers 12- to -80 tons rough terrain cranes.
Leveraging Product SupportThe product support is being provided to 250+ Tadano rough terrain cranes working in India. Mr. Nishida says, "Product support to our active units is being rendered by our dedicated and factory-trained service team who trains and guides our customers on how to maintain, trouble shoot and repair properly. All the necessary spare parts and consumables are stocked at our warehouse to fulfil the immediate requirements and cater to smooth after sales operation."
Equipment support is being focused by Voltas also for its active 450 units of rough terrain cranes. According to Mr. Aniruddha Moharir, GM Sales, Voltas, "We ensure adequate product support by providing overhauling services and parts support for the cranes working at refinery and power projects through our vendors." Voltas manufactures 20-45 tons rough terrain cranes which are mainly owned by Reliance and L&T.
Sany manufactures SRC 350 (35 tons) to SRC 750, (75 tons) rough terrain cranes. According to Mr. Saxena, "One of the significant advanced engineering attributes of our rough terrain cranes is their extended boom length. Our 75 tons cranes come with five sections, 45 meters telescopic boom and our 55 tons come with 42.5 meters boom length. These make the cranes suitable to undertake various applications in metro projects, cement, fertilizer, mining or refining industries where the process equipment are located at higher heights.
"Our cranes come with a main and an auxiliary winch which enables them to undertake multiple functions at a time, necessary in metro projects, for example lifting of concrete buckets and precast concrete sections. This makes them economical to own and operate."
Lower operating costs owing to better fuel efficiency and maintenance costs are also the competitive attributes of the cranes, concedes Mr. Saxena. He mentions, "Our cranes are equipped with advanced quality filters and radial tyres requiring less replacements, thereby providing the equipment with higher uptime."
Sany also provide product support in terms of prompt parts availability to all the Sany Brand equipment, through its mother warehouse in Pune and supporting warehouses at strategic locations and 24X7 service response through force of service engineers located across the country at strategic locations. Mr. Saxena mentions, "Our objective will be to ensure higher equipment availability and optimum usage. For this, we have set up a training centre at our Pune facility for training on Operations and Maintenance apart from onsite training.
Given the upcoming opportunities for varied applications, Delhi NCR based rough terrain crane manufacturer, Pearey Lall and Sons (E.P.) Ltd. (PLS) is looking forward to creatinga share in the business with its existing range of 20-22-30-35-40 rough terrain cranes, manufactured at its facility at Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh. According to Mr. Khalid Aziz, Vice President, Corporate, PLS, "the cranes are suitable to work in mines, railways, Defence and infrastructure projects, notably Metro Rail, Bridges, Tunnels, Freeways, Ports, airports, Hydro/Thermal power, roads etc The cranes are equipped with BS-III, Kirloskar, Ashok Leyland, Eicher or Cummins Engines, depending on the choice of the customers, makes them fuel efficient. The units are equipped with state of the art, electronic data logging systems, for monitoring the functioning of the products." He adds, "we are also carrying out improvisation in the hydraulics of the cranes along with improvements in safety features backed by strengthened operators training and maintenance support though ourselves and our dealers located across the country."
Mr. Khalid mentions, "given the emerging applications for lifting of heavier capacity loads, we are working on higher capacity rough terrain cranes 50 tons upwards. The application areas of the cranes will be for infrastructure and industrial construction." PLS has supplied its RT cranes to Mining PSUs, Railways, Defence, Electricity Boards, Border Roads and many others.
The introduction of newer and improvised rough terrain cranes, especially with heavy lifting capacities augurs well for the Indian infrastructure sector, which is witnessing heavy lifting requirements. However, it will be vital for manufacturers to equip the machines with features that suit local job site conditions.