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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA, December 2013. Universal Cranes Pty – one of the largest privately owned crane hire companies in Australia – recently used the largest crane in its fleet, a Terex® CC 2800-1 crawler crane, to help install four superstructure modules each weighing up to 300 tonnes for client BAE Systems on the HMAS Canberra. The vessel is one of two (the Canberra and Adelaide) new Landing Helicopter Deck (LHD) amphibious assault ships being developed for the Royal Australian Navy and being built at Williamstown Naval Dockyard near Melbourne.

The two new LHDs, with over 28,000 tonnes each, are expected to enter service in 2014 and 2015 respectively and will offer air support, amphibious assault, transport and command center roles. The government's requirements for the vessels included the capacity to transport up to 1,000 troops and 150 vehicles (including the new M1A1 Abrams tank in service with the Australian Army), include six helicopter spots on a full length flight deck for a mix of both transport and battlefield support helicopters and have a fully equipped hospital.

The 28,000 tonne HMAS Canberra is Australia’s first LHD and about half as large as Australia’s previous biggest ship the HMAS Melbourne. When commissioned, the LHDs are scheduled to replace the HMAS Tobruk and one of the Navy’s two Kanimbla class vessels.

The installation of the four Australian-fabricated modules onto the flight deck of the massive hull was a major phase in the construction of the ship. “The moment when the crane swung the 300 tonne bridge block over the hull was tense but all the lifts went very smoothly and according to plan,” said Nick Morris, Heavy lift Engineer at Universal Cranes. Once installed, the modules become the operating control towers on the flight deck.

The largest crawler crane in the Universal Cranes fleet, the 600 tonne capacity Terex CC2800-1crawler crane was fitted with a 72 m main boom and rigged in superlift lift (SSL) configuration. Each module weighed between 164 tonnes and 300 tonnes but the four lifts were further complicated because of the variable centres of gravity. To help install each module, each lift was used in conjunction with an Enerpac synchronised hydraulic jacking system. Consisting of four 110 tonne capacity hydraulic cylinders, each with a 1,500mm stroke, the synchronised hydraulic system was installed in tension within the rigging arrangement providing an overall capacity of 440 tonnes. The hoist system allowed the load to be lifted gradually by the CC 2800-1 and then dynamically adjusted in relation to the centre of gravity. The system also allowed constant monitoring of the load and stroke on each cylinder, providing very accurate control of the load by the operator.

“Another complication was the size of the Canberra, which meant the use of a dry dock and traditional craneage was not possible,” said Nick Morris. The CC 2800-1 therefore had to work from an adjacent pier alongside the moored vessel. “To allow positioning on the pier, BAE Systems designed and built a steel grillage where the CC 2800-1 was placed”, added Nick. The grillage was then relocated by the crane for each subsequent lift.

Universal Cranes also provided engineering and project management for the fabrication of a purpose designed lifting frame. During each lift another Universal crane – the manoevrable articulated 20 tonne capacity Terex AT 20 Pick & Carry crane - was used to help set up the hydraulic jacking system and to adapt the lifting frame with specific sling lengths for each specific block.

Now that the key elements of the vessel are in place, much of this year will be devoted to fitting Canberra out in preparation for her commissioning into the Australian fleet in the first quarter of next year following testing and sea trials.

About the Terex CC 2800-1 crawler crane

The CC 2800-1 offers a maximum 660-ton (600-tonne) lift capacity at a 32.8-ft (10-m) radius and excellent lifting capacities throughout its entire working range. Its variable superlift radius increases lifting capacities at further distances away from the crane’s base. A variety of boom configurations, including extensions, luffing jib, windmill kit, vessel lift as well as many other modules are available to increase crane flexibility.

Transportability is excellent due to the CC 2800-1’s unique open-boom design. These rectangular sections do not sit as high on the trailer as competitive boom designs, and no internal cross bracing allows smaller boom sections to be nested inside of larger sections to reduce the number of trailers required for transport. The CC 2800-1 can be equipped with the exclusive Terex Fall Protection System, winner of this year’s ESTA Safety award, which advances safety when rigging boom sections.

Its innovative IC-1 crane control system features a touchscreen with intuitive pictorial displays for operating ease. The crane’s exclusive Quadro-Drive on-demand system improves operating stability and allows the base to move and spin under load, increasing on-site versatility.

About Universal Cranes Pty

Universal Cranes Pty offers heavy lifting and transport services for short or long term contracts throughout Australia from its branches in Townsville, Rockhampton, Sunshine Coast, Brisbane (headquarters), Gladstone, Ballina and the recently opened depot in Miles Chincilla. It has numerous Terex All Terrain cranes in its mobile crane fleet which ranges from seven to 450 tonnes and crawler cranes from 50 tonnes up to the 600 tonne capacity Terex CC2800-1.

About Terex
Terex Corporation is a diversified global manufacturer of a broad range of equipment that is focused on delivering reliable, customer-driven solutions for many applications, including the construction, infrastructure, quarrying, mining, shipping, transportation, refining, energy, utility and manufacturing industries. Terex reports in five business segments: Aerial Work Platforms; Construction; Cranes; Material Handling & Port Solutions; and Materials Processing. Terex offers financial products and services to assist in the acquisition of equipment through Terex Financial Services. More information can be found at

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