TITAN CRANE RE-ASSEMBLY
The 1942 German built floating crane TITAN was successfully re-assembled in November 1998 by the Panama Canalís Dredging
Division. The procedure followed was authored by Argonautics Marine Engineering, Inc. under contract of the U.S. Army Corps of
Engineers Marine Design Center who cooperated with the Panama Canal Commission on this project.
Earlier in 1996, Argonautics Marine Engineering, Inc. was involved with the transportation of the TITAN from Long Beach, CA to
Panama by heavy-lift ship, see also the TITAN Crane Analysis project sheet. To be able to pass under the Bridge of the Americas on
the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal after arrival, the craneís leveling link was disconnected and its main boom was secured at
a 24 deg angle. To bring the crane back into operation, the main boom, weighing over 400 t with jib booms attached, had to be raised
to 56 deg to re-connect the leveling link. For lifting of the main boom, Argonautics Marine Engineering, Inc. was tasked to conduct
trade-off studies of various possible methods.
Ultimately, the Panama Canal Commission decided to select the self erection method as being the most cost effective, although not
the easiest. To reduce the anticipated initial luffing screw load, temporary counterweights were rigged from the pendulum and
additional suspension weights were used to assist with lifting the main boom. The capability of the Panama Canalís floating crane
HERCULES to lift the pendulum was carefully checked using detailed AutoCADģ drawings.
After three months of preparations, it took the 60 man team of the Dredging Division approximately 15 days to successfully self-erect
and re-assemble the TITAN crane. After replacing the hoisting wires and some final refurbishing, the 350 t capacity TITAN crane was
back into service to assist with the maintenance of the Panama Canal.
Scope of Work
The project scope included:
The successful re-assembly of the Titan crane was featured in the December 1998 issue of the Panama Canal magazine "Spillway".
Photograph courtesy of Panama Canal Commission.
Check feasibility various re-assembly methods;
Detail and document selected re-assembly procedure;
Calculation of internal loads and moments at each re-assembly step;
FEM analysis of the crane structure during various stages of re-assembly;
Design and specification of all auxiliary rigging;
Check suitability of the Panama Canalís assisting floating cranes HERCULES and GOLIATH.