Jan De Nul Group and Huisman have joined forces to develop new-generation heavy lift equipment for the former’s new installation vessels, Les Alizés and Voltaire
At the time that it ordered the new vessels, the offshore installation contractor awarded a contract to Huisman for the engineering, construction and delivery of two innovative cranes.
For these cranes, which will be the largest in their class, and drawing on the expertise of Jan De Nul Group’s operational and engineering teams, Huisman has developed a universal quick connector (UQC) the companies believe will result in a step change in safer offshore hoisting activity.
The UQC is a smart, modular, robust clamp which is mounted inside the crane’s lower block. It allows the cranes to lift objects ‘hands free’ using a direct connection without intermediate rigging.
The UQC attaches and detaches loads and tools directly to the crane’s lower block without rigging and is fully automatic. The complex task of rigging and derigging can be undertaken outside the critical path of the lifting operation.
“Overall, the UQC also improves workability and overcomes many of the difficulties usually encountered when rigging a load.
The UQC is fitted with an active rotation device increasing operational control when attaching a load. It allows rotation of the load to ‘finetune’ its orientation without using additional taglines. This enables accurate positioning of heavy loads in addition to turbine components with strict bolt tolerances.
The UQC connects to the lifting tool with a specific pin. Any lifting tool fitted with this pin can be used by it. “Thanks to its versatile design, the UQC will also be able to hoist existing lifting tools by means of an intermediate lifting eye and pin connection,” said Jan De Nul, “and if conventional rigging is needed, a hook fitted with the pin can be mounted in the UQC.”
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