Two collision avoidance systems for overhead cranes have been launched by Cattron-Theimeg. The UltraGuard system uses an ultraviolet transceiver to detect nearby objects and the LCAS system uses a Class 1 laser. Both systems can detect an obstacle, slow down and then stop the crane before a collision occurs.

UltraGuard has three operating modes: half-duplex for multiple overhead cranes; single reflective mode, which senses standard reflection from solid objects; and complex mode, which is similar to half-duplex but with additional reflective capability. The system also contains fail-safe modes and has been designed for self-diagnostics and continuous verification of performance.

The LCAS system can be adjusted so that the crane can be slowed or stopped at any distance. The alarm is activated whenever a unit detects a target moving within its pre-set warning distance. With a range of 50m (164ft), LCAS is capable of precision distance changes to a resolution of 3mm (0.12 inch).

“When you consider the costs of repairing cranes that have been in collisions and factor in the additional costs to production because of equipment downtime, you can see why LCAS systems are so essential for equipment and personnel safety,” said Cattron vice president Dan Mihalcak, Cattron-Theimeg vice president.