Crane monitoring systems provide maintenance, efficiency advantages

Crane monitoring systems, originally des-igned to measure static loads on fixed platforms for weight control purposes, have evolved into enhanced systems that measure and record a range of data that can guide the use, maintenance, and safety of crane operations.

Crane monitoring systems, originally des-igned to measure static loads on fixed platforms for weight control purposes, have evolved into enhanced systems that measure and record a range of data that can guide the use, maintenance, and safety of crane operations. Crane monitoring systems from Mipeg Offshore, a pioneer in the techno-logy, have been the source of continued devel-opment over the last 20 years, since the introduc-tion of Mipeg 1 in the early 1970s.

Although developed initially to monitor static loads, this simple approach led to enhancement of the system so that the effect of the dynamic loads/moments experienced by the crane during operation could be monitored and recorded.

The requirement was to record the loads and overturning moments, radius, times, and dates to give an overall picture for each lift. This infor-mation was used to evaluate the crane for suitability in its application and to enable future crane designs to be tailored to actual usage rather than the theoretical approach previously used.

The industry realized almost immediately that the information could be used as an effective tool for crane maintenance, with emphasis especially geared to slew bearing inspections.

Working with the oil companies, certifying authorities, and health and safety officials, slew bearing opening-up periods could be extended in accordance with how the crane was operated dynamically, rather than on a calendar basis. This ability saved operators both financially and with reduced down time.

With the advances in computer technology, the early Mipeg 1 system progressed through to Mipeg 500 then 1000 and to the current Mipeg 2000. Additional facilities were developed to enable analysis of the recorded data using a Widows-based program (Corep).

The systems were further enhanced to add such facilities as rope speed and direction and operation-limits monitoring to provide output that could be used on the cranes for gross overload/moment protection, boom angle limits, slew limits, and pressure-control signals.

Mipeg technology has assisted crane companies to enhance the operation of their cranes and has given the users recorded data, enabling them to plan their maintenance operations more effectively.

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