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Goliath Gantry Cranes: The Heart of the Shipyard

Jussi Rautiainen

Goliath gantry cranes are the heart of shipyards. The largest of the shipyard cranes, they lift into place the massive assembly blocks that form the platform or hull of a ship.

No specific dimensions or lifting capacities define when a crane rises to the classification of Goliath crane, but there’s general agreement that it must be of gantry design and engineered to perform the heaviest assembly lifts at modern shipbuilding dry docks and offshore yards.

The importance of a Goliath crane cannot be overstated, as its lifting capacity determines the upper limits of a shipyard’s productivity. The greater a Goliath crane’s lifting capacity, the larger the hull blocks that the crane is capable of lifting. And the larger the blocks the crane can lift, the sooner the ship can leave the dry dock for completion of assembly.

While other shipyard cranes can be temporarily replaced in the event of a problem, that is not an option for a Goliath crane – if it breaks down, production throughout the shipyard is delayed. Because of the critical nature of Goliath cranes, Konecranes allocates significant resources to engineering, manufacturing and technology advancements that ensure safety, performance and efficiency.

Over the years, Goliath gantry cranes have grown significantly in size. The industry standard for a Goliath in the 1990s was a 600-ton lifting capacity. Capacities and dimensions have continuously increased since then. Today’s Goliath gantry cranes are capable of moving loads weighing thousands of tons. In addition they move loads hundreds of meters horizontally and more than a hundred meters vertically.

In Brazil, Konecranes recently installed one of the world’s largest Goliath gantry cranes. It boasts a capacity of 1,800 tons, a lifting height of 114 meters and a structure that reaches 150 meters in height. And while gantry cranes like these feature incredible brute strength to move tonnage impressive distances, Goliath cranes from Konecranes are also capable of impressive finesse that enables operators to position loads with precision – within just a few millimeters.

As the leading shipyard cranes company, Konecranes continues to make advances in Goliath cranes with each passing year. As global shipping advances, there’s every reason to believe that the largest Goliath crane in the world is yet to be seen.

Contact a Konecranes shipyard cranes representative to learn more.

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