New equipment for foundations construction

By Chris Sleight10 November 2010

Coastal Caisson, a subsidiary of Bauer, is strengthening  the Herbert Hoover Dike in Florida, with t

Coastal Caisson, a subsidiary of Bauer, is strengthening the Herbert Hoover Dike in Florida, with the installation of a permanent cut-off wall along the top to depths of 56 to 80 feet (17 to 24 m). I

Manufacturers of foundations equipment recognise that new products need to be both environmentally friendly and efficient in order to function in increasingly challenging construction situations around the world. April's Bauma exhibition in Munich, Germany provided a platform for them to showcase their new innovations, despite the Icelandic ash cloud making travelling problematic for many.

Liebherr's new additions to its rotary drilling rig ranges combine additional equipment features and performance enhancements with versatility for increased efficiency and low cost transport. The German manufacturer showcased its new LB 16 large rotary drilling rig at Bauma. This model rounds off the company's LB series, it said, which entered production only three years ago and is now available in five sizes with torque ratings between 16 and 36 mT.

The LB concept is derived from years of experience in deep foundation applications and takes into account the toughest demands now placed on modern rotary drilling rigs. All LB models are suitable for a wide range of applications, and the LB16 has compact dimensions, making it suitable for use where space is limited.

With a minimum gateway and transport width of only 2.5 m, it is intended for a maximum drilling diameter of 1.5 m and drilling depth down to 34.5 m. An important addition is the rope crowd system, with a retraction force of 20 t, offering the user maximum performance under even tough soil and operating conditions.

Also unveiled in Munich was the Liebherr LRH 100 piling rig, an addition to its LRH series intended for piling tasks that call for an unusually high outreach - as high as 8.75 m and with a maximum angle of 18° in any direction. As a result, complete sequences of piles can be driven from a single location before the base machine has to be moved.

The compact dimensions of the LB 16 means it can be carried as a single unit, which also speeds up and simplifies machine repositioning, making work on site more flexible. The LRH 100 can be moved complete, thus greatly reducing the time needed to begin work on site.

Streicher presented its drilling technology division for the first time at Bauma, unveiling its mammoth TB 1800, a mobile deep drilling rig with a maximum hook load of 185 tonnes and a drilling depth of 3200 m, allowing both exploration and production drilling for crude oil, natural gas and geothermal energy. The German manufacturer says that despite its size, the rig is extremely mobile, and can be transported on public roads and off road without difficulty, thus offering substantial time benefits and savings on transportation and installation costs.

The ABI Group presented a number of new products at Bauma, including its AN 150 Anchor Drill Rig, which possesses a power of 149 kW and is ideal for anchor drilling, micro-piles and HDI drilling. The KBM 150 rod changer allows an easy handling of the rods, according to the German manufacturer, with up to seven double rods with a maximum outer diameter of 152.4 mm, which can be picked up also under inclined positions.

Using the rod changer enables efficient work flow, the installation and dismantling of the rods is carried out faster and safer. The anchor drill rig is equipped with approved turbocharged Cummins diesel engine, which fulfils the latest emission standards. Fuel consumption is optimised by a load sensing control and the robust hydraulic system is also suitable for the use of biological oils.

Soilmec, which has recently opened branches in China and Brazil in order to gain a greater presence in these emerging markets, is expanding its product range this year and used Bauma to introduce a number of these, including the SC-65 foundation crane, the first Soilmec crane with electro-proportional controls driven by an electro-hydraulic system, the HH-102 drilling rig, the PSM-5 micro drilling rig and the SR-90 TTJ hydraulic rotary rig.

With electronic systems playing an increasingly important role in product development, increasing safety and improving productivity as well as easing labour for the operator, Junttan introduced its iPiler process management system, consisting of a piling control device (PCD) which is attached to a Junttan pile driving rig and piling management software (PMO) operated via the Internet.

With the help of the system, it says, the pile driving process is faster, safer and more efficient. Using the PMO software, some of the piling preparations can be completed at the office, according to the Finnish manufacturer, with the driver receiving clear instructions on the piling straight to the control device. The PCD measuring system monitors the piling work closely, so that the driver can concentrate on his work.

It is safer and faster to make the final blows, says Junttan because the control device measures strokes and penetration and eliminates the need for a banksman standing next to the pile.

According to product manager Tommi Lahteinen, the system adjusts itself to the most versatile needs and demands of customers and its ease of use and reliability meets the demands of most modern construction sites. "The system has been tested for a long time and we have received very positive feedback," said Mr Lahteinen. "Safety, working conditions and productivity have been improved. Our test clients have reported that thanks to the system, productivity has increased by more than 10%."

Future new products and services will be developed to complement the system, he added, thus enabling new features to be updated into existing equipment.

Pile Dynamics, meanwhile, has introduced its Wireless PIT-X, a lightweight device designed to fit into the palm of the hand and ideal for field work due to its wireless accelerometer, bright display and eight-hour battery life. According to the company, pulse echo integrity testing is the method of choice to quickly verify the integrity of concrete piles. Developing its first instrument to perform the test in 1991, the Wireless PIT-X its latest addition to make integrity testing of deep foundations more convenient.

It has also launched its iCAP technology, offering instant signal matching based on the globally used CAPWAP logic and offering Pile Driving Analyzer users an instant signal matching system they can trust. With no user interaction, iCAP extracts the soil behaviour from dynamic measurements, computes capacity at the time of test and produces a simulated static load test graph all during real time while testing. "In this way, iCAP provides both the reliability and the instant results that PDA users are looking for," said a spokesman. "iCAP expands the power of the PDA, taking a confirmed technology to the next level."

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