Crane systems to get an uplift with robotics

Image: Queensland University of Technology

Australia’s robotics researchers are partnering with Brisbane-based technology company Verton Australia to turn a crane into a smart robot.

Queensland University of Technology researchers and Innovative Manufacturing CRC (IMCRC) are collaborating in a two-year project that aims to develop the world’s first remote-controlled load management system.

The system eliminates human held taglines for crane operations.

“To be involved in a project to adapt the development and manufacturing of the R-series through the use of robotics is a compelling concept that has enormous potential,” Verton Australia chief executive Trevor Bourne said.

“As well as enabling unprecedented safety for crane operations, the R-Series also improves efficiency and productivity.”

The researchers will be using sensors on the equipment to optimise the cranes performance.

This includes investigating ways to improve the energy management and storage capabilities of the device.

The R-Series has been attracting worldwide interest from transport, construction, renewable energy and mining companies and was recently recognised at Australia’s Good Design Awards.

Bourke said the project has brought together experts in robotics and data analytics to further develop the R-Series systems.

“By embracing digitalisation and integrating advanced manufacturing technologies such as smart robotics and the Internet of Things, Verton, in collaboration with QUT, will create and export new flexible load-management solutions that can be seamlessly integrated and applied across multiple sectors,” IMCRC chief executive David Chuter said.

“Collaboratively, they will change industries because they see the benefits that their manufacturing research will create, not just for Australia – but globally.”