Grand claims are made for this year’s Hannover Fair, which includes CeMAT – the world’s biggest materials handling and logistics exhibition. The fair is being held at the largest showground in the world in Hannover, Germany from 20 to 25 March.

A total of 7,250 exhibitors will display their products over 284,000m2 in 25 halls and an open air site.

The whole show is divided into six categories, including CeMAT which, with an expected 100,000 visitors, is the second largest section of the show after factory automation. CeMat is held every two years and last time, in 1998, it attracted 97,000 visitors, a third of the show’s total.

CeMAT has more than 1,000 exhibitors, in halls 19 to 26 and at an outdoor site between halls 12 and 26, covering a total area of 78,000m2. Sectors covered include cranes, car hoists, serial production hoists, loading systems, industrial trucks, storage solutions, plant and information systems and other industrial services.

The content of the Hannover Fair is changing due to rapid developments in the industry. The amount of hardware on show has decreased, but software has expanded to fill a whole hall this year.

A particular growth area is factory automation. This section of the show – in halls 9 to 17 – has 2,500 exhibitors, ranging from handling technologies and robotics to software and energy systems. Boundaries are blurring between factory automation and materials handling but the definition of a robot, for example, remains clear. A robot is still defined as having three axes under control, as opposed to pick and place equipment, for example, which usually has two axes of control. The German mechanical and plant engineering association, VDMA, estimates a total of 770,000 factory automation robots are operating around the world, with a consequent demand for software to control them.

Some big names will not be at Hannover, including Abus, Stahl, Munck Cranes, Street Crane and Morris/P&H, though Morris’s agent in Germany, Yale, will be present. However there will still be plenty for visitors to see. A selection is outlined on the facing page.

As well as CeMAT and factory automation, the other sections of the fair are: surface treatment processes (halls 5 and 6); Subcon Technology, for subcontracting and materials (halls 2, 3 and 4); energy (halls 6 to 8 and 11); research and technology (hall 18).

Selected exhibits

CTI Systems

Hall 2, stand D08

On the stand of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, CTI Systems will promote its range of storage and handling systems.

Cableform Inc

Hall 21, stand E17

Cableform of the USA is promoting its LMC digital DC hoist and crane controls which it says are the first to bring Isolated Gate Bipolar Transistor (IGBT) power technology to steel mills and industries using large DC hoists and cranes. Cableform claims that its LMC controls improve performance and reliability, reduce power requirements and eliminate contactor/resistor panels and thyristor controls.

Industrias Electromecanicas GH / Gosan

Hall 21, stand F33

GH will be exhibiting its new design and range of end carriages and also its new range of motors and frequency inverter drives. Gosan will be displaying its new range of small sheaves and special nylon sheaves along with its couplings and fabricated wire rope sheaves.

Ikusi / Industrias Galarza

Hall 21, stand F37/1

IKUSI will be showing for the first time its new family of radio control equipment, the TM60. IGA will be displaying its complete range of crane festoon equipment and PVC enclosed downshop conductor systems.

Jay Electronique

Hall 12

Two new radio remote controls series are premiered by Jay in Hannover. The UM series is an industrial radio remote control with joysticks. The UD series is described as an industrial ‘enhanced-safety’ radio remote control with buttons.

Kito Corporation

Hall 21, stand D33

The Japanese manufacturer has booked 105m2 of space to show its hoisting equipment and its automated warehouse and transportation system. The latter, which Kito calls logistics system equipment, is not exported to Europe yet, but is being exhibited to promote the total capabilities of the company. Kito’s main product offering is its ER series electric chain hoists which were launched in 1998. It is also showing new cylinder-operated hoists and climbing hoists for theatre and concert hall applications as well as other products such as tyre-driven trolley type hoists as well as manual chain hoists and lever hoists.

Mannesmann Dematic

Hall 25, stand B15 – B35

The focus is on ergonomic load handling at the workplace for which a new range of hoists, manipulators and balancers will be presented. They are designed to reduce physical strain and exertion. As an example of the various applications in industry, typical assembly processes in the automobile industry will be demonstrated and a car door ‘handled’ with maximum care and precision, as seen on the cover of the last issue of HOIST.

This year the Cranes Division will focus less on the presentation of hardware and more on demonstrating customer benefits right across the product range. This includes demonstrating project engineering software as well as the ‘Cranes planning consultant’ which is available on the Internet. Additional interests centre on container cranes and process cranes for the paper and steel manufacturing industries or in the steel handling sector.

The Systems Division will have a multimedia show demonstrating Mannesmann Dematic’s expertise for individual industries, eg. postal and parcel services, baggage and cargo handling, the automobile industry, the food and beverage industries as well as the mail-order sector.

Special consideration will be given to the growing e-commerce market for which Mannesmann Dematic offers the necessary storage, order-picking and sorting systems.