Demag crane technology for Volkswagen press shop in Bratislava

Düsseldorf,   18. June 2012

  • Process cranes as a pioneering intralogistics solution
  • Innovate gripper concept for a high level of safety
  • Optimum use of space thanks to tool storage on three levels

Demag Cranes has received an order from Volkswagen AG to equip the new Volkswagen Slovakia press shop at the Bratislava site, Slovakia, with crane technology. The overall concept developed by Demag Cranes comprises two process cranes designed specially for the handling and transport of pressing tools, and intelligent crane controls.

“The new press shop will afford us greater depth of production for the vehicles produced at our plant”, commented Albrecht Reimold, CEO of Volkswagen Slovakia. “As a result, material handling times should be reduced and costs lowered.”

Lutz Dowy, Head of the Process Cranes business line of Demag Cranes explains: “With our crane technology, we are making a major contribution to substantially reducing handling times for tools. Our overall crane concept, which covers all the process steps from the transport of tools to storage and maintenance, impressed our customer Volkswagen Slovakia. With Volkswagen, one of the major global car manufacturing companies is again relying on Demag crane technology in its press shops.”

Construction of the new Volkswagen Slovakia press shop started in 2011. With the support of Demag crane technology, the first pressed parts should be manufactured in Bratislava by the end of 2013.

Additional information:

Crane technology as a factor for increasing productivity
The two double-girder overhead travelling cranes with a span of approx. 32 metres travel on a 200-metre-long crane runway. A process crane with 80 tonnes lifting capacity is equipped with a specially developed, motor-driven tool gripper. With this gripper, the tools, each weighing up to 65 tonnes, required for the production of body parts can be stored in a space-saving manner on three levels. Furthermore, the crane installation comes with positioning control for independent control of up to 200 storage locations and discharge stations. In addition to tool transport, the second process crane with 70/32 tonne open winches also turns the tool halves for maintenance work. This crane will be delivered in advance in autumn 2012 and used for the construction of the press line.

Tool gripper with impressive performance profile
The Demag Crane used at Volkswagen Slovakia in Bratislava was developed with the objective of offering a solution with high levels of safety and cost effectiveness. For Volkswagen Slovakia this means that the existing storage zone can now be used in a highly efficient manner because the pressing tools, each weighing up to 65 tonnes, can be accurately stacked on three levels. Since the tools are now picked up by the gripper, manual attachment of the load is no longer required and safety for the crane staff is further increased. With help of positioning controls, the crane independently manages its approach to the storage slots and transfer positions of the pressing lines.

Tool turning made easy
The second process crane is used for transport and for maintenance of pressing tools. It has two hoists with 70 and 32 tonnes lifting capacity that are installed on a single crab, which means the crane can also turn the tools during maintenance work without setting down the load. Frequency-regulated drives provide for infinitely variable hoist speeds and synchronise the parallel motion of the hoist units in addition to the counter motion required for turning — this increases safety during the technically demanding tool-turning process.

Advanced safety technology provides comprehensive protection
Both process cranes are equipped with by-pass control, in order to prevent collisions of the attached tools with machines or hall buildings. Collisions between the two cranes travelling on one runway are ruled out thanks to integrated optical spacing. The cranes also have a load sway damping system which guarantees safer load transport even at higher crane and cross travel speeds.

About Volkswagen Slovakia
Since the takeover of the Bratislavské automobilové závody car plant in January 1991 by the Volkswagen Group, the plant has been continuously expanded. One year later, assembly of the Volkswagen Passat was started in the plant, further models such as the Golf and Polo followed. SUV production started in Bratislava in 2002 with the Volkswagen Touareg, the Audi Q7 followed later. Since the end of 2011, the New Small Family, to which the Volkswagen up! belongs, has also been assembled in the largest Slovakian automotive plant.  

About Demag Cranes, Czech regional subsidiary
Demag Cranes has been represented in the Czech Republic since 1994. Today the regional subsidiary based in Slaný, at the gates of Prague, forms one of the major pillars in the growth strategy of the company. Since 2004, Demag Cranes' Slaný facility has produced process cranes for the European market and MPW open winch units for global distribution.

About Demag Cranes
The Demag Cranes Group is one of the world’s leading suppliers of industrial cranes and crane components, harbour cranes and terminal automation technology. Services, in particular maintenance and refurbishment, are another key element of the Group’s business activities. The Group is divided into the business segments Industrial Cranes, Port Technology and Services and has the strong and well established Demag and Gottwald brands. Demag Cranes sees its core competence in the development and construction of technically sophisticated cranes and hoists as well as automated transport and logistics systems in ports and terminals, the provision of services for these products and the manufacture of high-quality components.

As a global supplier, Demag Cranes manufactures in 16 countries on five continents and operates a worldwide sales and service network that is present in over 60 countries through its subsidiaries such as Demag Cranes & Components GmbH and Gottwald Port Technology GmbH, agencies and a joint venture. In financial year 2010/2011, the Group, with its 6,115 employees, generated revenue of EUR 1,062.3 million. Since August 2011, the Terex Group in the United States has held a majority share in the company (

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Conditions for forward-looking statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements relating to the business, financial performance and earnings of Demag Cranes AG and its subsidiaries and associates. Forward-looking statements are based on current plans, estimates, projections and expectations and are therefore subject to risks and uncertainties, most of which are difficult to estimate and which in general are beyond the control of Demag Cranes AG. Consequently, actual developments as well as actual earnings and performance may differ materially from those which are explicitly or implicitly assumed in the forward-looking statements. Demag Cranes AG does not intend or accept any obligation to publish updates of these forward-looking statements.

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