January 29th 2015

MCI patent for accelerated load handling

Innovative technology from the Entrepreneurial School® for aligning crane loads means faster handling, fewer risks and lower costs.

A container suspended from the hook of a crane tends to rotate in response to wind or minor impacts and then has to be realigned manually before being set down. That is time-consuming and dangerous, with risks to life and limb for the people working so close to the load as well as the risk of damage to the load and the surroundings.

The solution is to be found in a well known physical principle: if you sit on a swivel chair with your feet clear of the ground and move your outstretched arms to the right, the rest of your body will rotate to the left. That is the principle employed in the load-rotation gyroscope developed by the MCI and now the subject of a patent application.

Although the idea is simple enough, it takes mechatronic knowhow to turn it into an effective product. To save weight, the gyroscope is designed as an intelligent inertia mass housing a motor, batteries and electronics. The device is also equipped with position sensors and an energy recuperation system – similar to the braking energy recuperation systems used in electric vehicles. A working prototype already exists and is now being tested for a range of applications.

A number of big companies – crane manufacturers and helicopter transportation companies – are showing interest in the load-rotation gyroscope.

“The development work that still remains to be done offers attractive opportunities for students writing a Master thesis or dissertation, who will be able to prepare the ground for the market launch of the product in collaboration with our industry partners,” says the MCI’s Professor Sebastian Repetzki, under whose guidance the innovative system has been developed.

“This new product will save companies valuable working time, accelerate working processes, avoid hazards and reduce costs,” explains the MCI’s Rector Andreas Altmann and he adds, “Now we are looking for corporate partners for further development work leading to series production and the market launch.”

Mechatronics at the MCI:
Bachelor Program
Master Program

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