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igus® Ireland

51A Caswell Road


Northampton NN4 7PW

+44 1604 677240
igus® Ltd.

Caswell Road

Northampton, NN4 7PW

01604 677240

Fifty percent more storage space

Harnessed energy supply systems for customer-specific indoor cranes

Designing an indoor crane requires a lot of experience. And if the available space for it is extremely limited, then it is worthwhile to outsource constructive sub-tasks to suppliers. In the present case, this concerns the energy supply for a fully automatic crane system. Standard and special parts have been used to create an exceptionally space-saving solution that has proven itself in heavy-duty and continuous operation from day one - and which today creates 50 percent more storage space for the end customer.


  • What was needed: Four-part energy chains of the E4/4 system of the 3838 series, readymade energy supply systems, standard and special troughs for the chains
  • Requirements: Extremely small installation space
  • Industry: Metalworking industry
  • Success for the customer: Customised project planning and service provision in cooperation with all project participants

Fully automatic indoor cranes


For a well-known manufacturer in the metalworking industry, the specialist Kranservice Herz developed a stacking crane system for loading stainless steel pipe and encountered very special environmental conditions. Due to the structural conditions on site, the operator required an extremely low clearance height. The space from the top edge of the rails to the interfering edge of the mobile shelving system is only 1,000 mm, which is why the entire stacking crane system had to be adapted to these extremely tight space conditions. "
The power supply systems for the trolley drive and the slewing gear posed a further challenge. Only 500 mm height and 300 mm width were available as installation space for the trolley's power supply. Conventional festooning or conductor rails were immediately ruled out in such cases due to their low installation height. For the project managers, only energy supply systems designed in close cooperation with igus were considered. All the cabling for the main power supply for the drives, the control cables and the Profibus cable are guided through it. And to keep them smaller, they have also been split.


Today, four-piece E4/4 system energy chains of the 3838 series are used in the plant which are robust and modular in design and are specifically suitable for applications in the lateral position. The energy chains harnessed according to customer specifications with inserted cables today guarantee the entire plant availability.  The scope of delivery also includes standard troughs for the energy chains in gliding application, as well as special troughs for the chains with reverse bend radius.
For the trolley's power supply, two reverse horizontally arranged energy chains are used, which are located above the trolley frame laterally on the inside of the main girder. Its upper edge does not exceed with this constructive arrangement. The travels of the trolley's power supply are 21,245mm for the first and 17,650mm for the second system. The speed is between 0 and 60 m/min. For the slewing gear power supply, two reverse horizontally mounted igus energy chains are also used on the slewing gear frame. With this system a rotation angle of 270° is achieved. Here, the speeds range from 0 to 4 rpm. "I was extremely sceptical at first. Due to the high loads, we have to have reserves in every detail," Werner Herz looks back. "The horizontal alignment for the slewing gear in particular was new territory for us. We knew only one thing: since we could not provide more space, there was no alternative to the energy chain. “

energy chain
energy chain

"Our experience with the energy supply systems from igus has been more than good. We were provided with the technical key data and were presented with a suitable solution, which has been in use without any problems ever since. "
André Herz, Kranservice Herz

In addition to the standard product range, special solutions are also available

"We generally aim to support our customers right from the project planning phase," explains Yve Kirsch, Technical Applications Consultant at igus. "We do this, for example, by creating drawings and checking installation height. Outside our standard product range - energy chains and cables - we can supplement system solutions with special parts. This includes not only special troughs. We process energy chains according to customer specifications or even manufacture them to cover the respective application. " Senior manager Werner Herz of Kranservice Herz, the company involved in the project, can only confirm this: "Our customer is very satisfied with his crane system. His requirements are met. And I am sure that energy supply systems will become increasingly popular for indoor cranes, and not only for reasons of space. “

Indoor crane