Business Challenge: Finding a suitable, water bound, indoor location with sufficient lifting capabilities to complete construction of a 150Mton hydraulic cylinder.
The industry is constantly pushing boundaries which set new standards and Bosch Rexroth is no exception to this. The company supports mechanical and plant engineering challenges around the world with its cutting-edge technology and unique industry knowledge. Its portfolio ranges from hydraulics, electric drives & controls, gear technology, to linear motion & assembly technology. From its leadplant for large cylinders in Boxtel (NL), Bosch Rexroth designs and manufactures custom built hydraulic cylinders and electro-hydraulic actuators for a large variety of industry sectors.
For a recent project, Bosch Rexroth was asked to design and construct the heaviest cylinder they have ever built, a hydraulic cylinder for a floating piling barge weighing 149,2 Mt.
“The sheer weight of the cylinder confronted us with the challenge of finding an indoor location with adequate lifting capabilities for the final assembly” says Michiel Kuijper, Project Manager at Bosch Rexroth. “Moreover, as the cylinder had to be transported overseas after completion, we were looking for a location that was water bound, to avoid the challenge of transporting such a large and heavy unit via road to the port.”
“Due to the good relationship with Broekman Logistics we were aware of the possibilities in their Heavy Lift Centre at the Broekman Project Services terminal in Rotterdam. For us this was the ideal location since it enabled us to perform the final assembly activities with the use of their overhead crane”, Kuijper continues.
Breakbulk terminal Broekman Project Services BV located in the centre of the Port of Rotterdam provides a unique combination of 4 large industrial warehouses. These four warehouses are collectively called “The Heavy Lift Centre” (HLC) due to indoor lifting capacity reaching up to 700 Mton unit weight. The HLC is mainly used for storage and construction of large dimension and heavy components.”
“It is great when clients of ours contact us during the early stages of a project. This provides the possibility to investigate and recognise possible challenges well in advance and resolve them well in advance” says Gijs Vlasman, Manager Business Development at Broekman Logistics.
Across a period of 8 weeks Bosch Rexroth was able to execute a number of activities such as cleaning the cylinder shell and other parts, assembling the piston rod and shell, testing the cylinder and conserving the unit.
“With the use of a mobile conservation unit we were able to execute these activities in their Heavy Lift Centre, saving us the time and costs of extra transport when this would have been done at an external location.”
After the final assembly activities were all completed, the cylinder was ready to be transported to the end client in China. “The Project Logistics team provided us with an excellent solution and took care of the complete transport for us, including DAP delivery at Mazhou Island” says Kuijper.
With the use of a hydraulic trailer the cylinder was transported to the quay at the terminal where it was picked up by a floating crane. This crane transported the cylinder across the Port of Rotterdam and the breakbulk piece was loaded on board a vessel destined for Hong Kong. Once it arrived in Hong Kong the cylinder was transferred to a barge and delivered to the shipyard of end client.
“This project was a new milestone for us and faced us with a number of logistical challenges. Thanks to Broekman Logistics’ unique combination of their heavy lift terminal facilities and experience with project logistics, they were able to provide us with an excellent solution”, Kuijper concludes.