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News Release

Grove GMK6400 crosses the Atlantic to boost wind energy


From Antwerp, Belgium, to the Caribbean country of Curacao and back again, a Grove GMK6400 all-terrain crane was sent across the ocean to assist with a wind farm project.

Verschoor Kraanverhuur, based in the Netherlands, purchased the crane from Manitowoc at bauma 2013 in Munich, Germany, and almost immediately sent the 400 t (450 USt) crane to assist in wind farm maintenance in Curacao.

The journey from Antwerp to Curacao took three weeks, but the challenging job site required a crane up to the task. No other crane on the island had the reach or capacity to make the necessary lifts. The GMK6400 performed maintenance on 3 MW windmills at heights up to 80 m (263 ft).

Merijn Vermeij, operations manager with Verschoor, said the company chose the crane for its efficient set up and tear down process.

“We chose the GMK6400 because we had to work with the crane at three different locations on the Island of Curacao,” he said. “This crane is very easy to move and to assemble and disassemble. A crawler crane would have taken much more time and would have been much more expensive.”

The crane’s patented Megatrak independent suspension system also enabled it to maneuver at all three job sites with ease.

“There is no crawler or mobile crane on the entire island of Curacao that is comparable to the GMK6400,” Vermeij said.

When riggedd with the luffing jib that extends from 25 m – 79 m (82 ft – 259 ft), the maximum tip height reaches 134 m (438 ft). With this setup, the crane can perform lifts no other six-axle, or even seven-axle crane, can currently achieve.

The GMK6400 is also available with the self-rigging MegaWingLift attachment, Grove’s tensioning system that increases the crane’s capacity while the boom is working at a steep angle. In the past, such systems required an auxiliary crane to install, which is a more involved process with longer rigging times. However, on the GMK6400, the self-rigging MegaWingLift can be fitted in just 20 minutes.

Grove’s new hybrid drive system, Megadrive, gives the crane both conventional and hydrostatic drive capabilities. With conventional drive, the crane employs the first and second axles; with hydrostatic drive, the hydraulically powered fourth and fifth axles are employed. The third and sixth axles utilize steer-by-wire technology.

A single engine drive system on the GMK6400 drives both the carrier and superstructure. This reduces its overall weight and improves fuel economy. Manitowoc’s engineers reallocated the weight savings to other parts of the crane’s design, further boosting capacity.

The GMK6400 was named the European Association of Abnormal Road Transport and Mobile Cranes (ESTA) Innovation Manufacturer of the Year at Bauma 2013 in Munich, Germany. Manitowoc beat out a strong field of competitors to be recognized with the award. 
About The Manitowoc Company, Inc.
The Manitowoc Company, Inc. (“Manitowoc”) was founded in 1902 and has over a 116-year tradition of providing high-quality, customer-focused products and support services to its markets and its 2018 net sales were approximately $1.8 billion. Manitowoc is one of the world's leading providers of engineered lifting solutions. Manitowoc, through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, markets, and supports comprehensive product lines of mobile telescopic cranes, tower cranes, lattice-boom crawler cranes, and boom trucks under the Grove, Manitowoc, National Crane, Potain, Shuttlelift and Manitowoc Crane Care brand names.
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