Crane manufacturer Street Crane has commissioned a series of cranes at a facility in Chester, in the UK, where aircraft wing panels are processed.

The venture is a collaboration with Metal Improvement Company, a metal treatment specialist, and BAE Systems, the UK partner in the Airbus programme.

Seven double girder Street cranes with a safe working load of 5t have been installed. All seven have Street ZX hoists and two are fitted with a turntable.

The new overhead crane system handles single wing panels up to 33m long and is used to load and unload them from shot peening machines, transport them along the bay and carefully rotate them through 180° for location in storage racks.

Street used a specially engineered handling system to enable the cranes to complete the tricky task of rotating the wing panels without damaging them.

A turntable is located in between the beams of the double girder and the wing panel is held to the supplementary beam at several points.

Street managing director Andrew Pimblett described the project as “technically challenging and immensly rewarding”.