Low weight of logging equipment, in particular in case of skyline cranes is vital for many ropeway system operators. At the same time operators strive for more performance. Electric drives are our key enabler to achieve more performance at lower weight. Latest electric drives have a dramatically higher power to weight ratio than conventional hydraulic drives.
Wile ropeway system operators often prefer to transport timber upwards, a significant percentage of timber is transported downwards. The downward transport constitutes an excellent opportunity to recover and store energy to be used for hauling in the next load or moving the crane uphill. Depending on ropeway length, incline and transport conditions, fuel savings of up to 100% are practically possible.
Making use of an energy storage unit on board brings about another dramatic advantage. The onboard engine only needs to provide the average power required for the transport cycle, rather than the peak power during inhauling and driving uphill. The consequence is that we require an engine only a fraction in size compared to that in conventional self driving skyline cranes.