Alu Laufen modernises the grippers of its automatic cranes

H+H, market leader in the sector of automated crane units for long articles, equipped its most recent automated unit (AMC Process Crane) at Alu Laufen with a new and improved gripper design. Its advantages have now motivated Alu Laufen to use this gripper equipment on the  other existing crane units in the extrusion plant.

The Swiss extrusion plant Aluminium Laufen AG, a renowned manufacturer of high-grade sections and pre-material for forging, has a complex and very largely automated conveyor system for long articles. The system involves automatic (process) cranes, roller and chain conveyors, lifting tables, vertical conveyors, section stacking machines and optimised packing stations. The logistics specialist H+H Herrmann + Hieber in Denkendorf  is responsible for the complete internal logistics system.

With the beginning of the new 32/35 MN extrusion line’s operation, the fully automated material transport system throughout the plant, which H+H had previously developed and installed in a number of extension stages, was extended among other things by adding a third automatic process crane (AMC 3), which operates between the intermediate store and the batch furnace units.

In operation it became evident that compared with the gripper equipment used on the two other crane units, the newly developed gripper system of the AMC 3 has a number of advantages: among others, lower wear and greater replacement simplicity.

This has motivated the plant to equip the two older automatic cranes with the new gripper design as well. The change-over will take place – without interrupting operations – at the end of July 2016.