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Positive crane balance after five years

Pre-assembled energy supply systems ensure combined cargo transport

At the EUROKOMBI terminal in Hamburg, four RGB cranes were equipped with pre-assembled energy supply systems including cables and guide troughs. They are the umbilical cord to smooth container handling. In highly salty harbour air and heavy exposure of the technology to exhaust gases, the product solution from igus has proven itself without exception to this day.


  • What was needed: Roller energy chain with guide trough, "chainflex" special cables
  • Requirements: Corrosion-resistant, especially salty air, exposure to exhaust gases from trucks, diesel locomotives and ships.
  • Industry: Logistics
  • Success for customer: Complete service provision from drawing documentation to approval at commissioning, individual energy supply solution

Gantry crane


EUROKOMBI is Germany's largest terminal for combined cargo transport. On an area of around 103, 000 m² containers are now handled on the water side and on the shore side on five processing and buffer tracks, each 720 m long. Responsible for this are four RGB cranes, each with a payload of 41 t, from the Austrian crane manufacturer Künz
With a travel of 69 m, a trolley speed of 120 m/min and an acceleration of around 0.5 m/s, the technical requirements for the energy supply system and the cables are very high. Large amounts of energy have to be moved through the chain. "The hoist requires 220 kW, the trolley crane carriage 100 kW, the spreader twice 6 kW, accordingly many and relatively thick cables are used," explains Günter Baitis.
On the Hamburg harbour premises, however, the very salty air and the exhaust fumes from lorries, diesel locomotives and ships also play a major role, causing problems for people and technology. The operator has to deal with corrosion, so that the cable insulation, for example, is affected. Cable qualities and jacket materials must therefore be perfectly matched to all requirements on site.


For the conception of the energy supply system, the drawing documentation was prepared and the approval protocol was made during commissioning. The performance design was always coordinated in close cooperation with the crane builder Kuenz.  In the application case, the entire performance package consists of the provision of the energy supply system, the cables, the strain relief and the guide trough.
The RGB cranes are now each equipped with a pre-assembled readychain energy supply system, or more precisely, a roller energy chain from igus is used here.  There are no additional loads on the energy supply system, which runs in a guide trough. "It only runs in the direction in which it is supposed to move," confirms Günter Baitis. Guide troughs are used for long travels. They facilitate smooth, low-friction operation of the energy supply system. For reasons of weight, among others, an aluminium material was chosen for the RGB cranes, which is also seawater-resistant according to DIN.
The roller energy chain is covered with such as power and control cables.  In addition to the quality of the cables used, the arrangement of the cables within the chain and the available space basically play a decisive role with regard to the service life of the system.

"The pre-assembled energy supply systems run in all cranes without any complaints from the very beginning. Even during a preventive maintenance a few weeks ago, no part had to be replaced. Technically and also visually they present themselves in a very good condition!"
Günter Baitis, Project Manager of EUROKOMBI Technical Services GmbH

energy chain
energy chain

Chain type with very long service life

The requirements for energy chains for long travels have increased steadily in recent years. This is the hour of the roller energy supply. "The new development of the roller chain enabled us to guarantee the long service life of the system during project planning. There is no longer a gliding movement, but a rolling movement.  This reduces the push/pull force and extends the service life," says Theo Diehl, summing up the decisive performance features of the rol e-chain .  Further advantages include the strong reduction of the drive power to less than 25 % for moving the energy supply system. Travel distances up to 800m and speeds up to 10m/s possible Different roller types are available; and they can also be used in applications with dirt. "Right from the start, we were sure that this energy supply system would enable us to solve the challenging task on site without any problems," Theo Diehl sums up. "And the technical condition of the energy supply system after five years of continuous operation proves us right. " If the worst thing happened, the spare parts are quickly available. Only standard parts have been installed, which are in stock in Cologne and can be delivered on site in Hamburg within a few hours.