Konecranes Wins Landmark Order for 24 Steel Mill Cranes for Chinese-Owned Greenfield Mill in Texas

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio, Oct. 23, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In one of the largest orders it has received in the U.S., Konecranes has been awarded a contract to supply all of the cranes for TPCO America Corporation 's new seamless steel pipe manufacturing facility near Gregory, Texas. The turnkey order includes 24 cranes for the melt shop, rolling mill and finishing mill. The crane delivery will begin in October of 2013, and will be operational by April 2014.

According to Tianjin Pipe (Group) Corporation (TPCO), this project represents the largest single investment by a Chinese company in a U.S. manufacturing facility to date. TPCO will invest almost EUR 700 million (more than $1 billion USD) through its subsidiary TPCO America (with U.S.-joint venture partners) to build the new facility on a 253-acre greenfield site east of Gregory, Texas near Corpus Christi. Output for the project is estimated at 500,000 metric tonnes of seamless pipe per year. When completed, the plant will employ 600–800 Texas workers.

"Konecranes worked with TPCO's engineering team in China to help configure the cranes to meet local requirements, as well as the requirements of their process," said Doug Maclam, vice president, sales and marketing, Konecranes, Inc.

Konecranes will supply seven custom engineered cranes, including two hot metal ladle cranes, a tundish crane, two magnet scrap handling cranes and two magnet billet cranes to the melt shop, ranging in capacity from 40 to 180 tons, all rated CMAA class E or F. The melt shop will also be serviced by two smaller CXT maintenance cranes.

The rolling mill will include 10 cranes ranging in capacity from 20 to 50 tons. The cranes will be used for pipe and billet handling and for mill maintenance.

For the finishing mill, Konecranes will supply three CMAA class F, 25-ton pipe handling cranes. The cranes will be used in the pipe finishing and threading operations. At the end of this process, two 30-ton CMAA Class E, semi-gantry magnet cranes will store finished pipe in the yard and load it into railcars.

According to J. J. Johnston, TPCO America Corporation director of administration, the company was committed to use the best available control technology for this plant. In that vein, Konecranes was asked to include its patented DynAPilot sway control on all of the cranes, as well as TRUCONNECT® Remote Monitoring and Reporting, which allows Konecranes to remotely monitor and diagnose crane performance, troubleshoot and predict maintenance needs. Many of the cranes also have DynAReg regenerative braking, a technology that saves money by feeding power generated by braking forces back to the electrical grid. Additionally, all process cranes in the melt shop have PLC based control, DynATrak skew control and Konecranes CMS (Crane Maintenance System).

According to Mark Laughlin, product specialist for Konecranes, TPCO also asked for advanced anti-collision systems because in many cases, they have more than one crane on each runway.

When asked why Konecranes was selected, Mr. Bai Renzhao, a senior representative of TPCO America, was succinct and to the point. "Konecranes has a global reputation for excellent quality. Many of their clients in the U.S. are our clients as well, and of course we asked them what they thought of Konecranes. Through our due diligence we confirmed that Konecranes products were high quality, reliable and safe – issues important in any heavy industry process."

Scott Gilbey, Director of Marketing and Communications, Region Americas

E-mail: scott.gilbey@konecranes.com or phone 937.525.5676


Konecranes is a world-leading group of Lifting Businesses™, serving a broad range of customers, including manufacturing and process industries, shipyards, ports and terminals. Konecranes provides productivity-enhancing lifting solutions as well as services for lifting equipment and machine tools of all makes. In 2011, Group sales totalled EUR 1,896 million. The Group has 11,700 employees at 609 locations in 47 countries. Konecranes is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki (symbol: KCR1V).

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Source:Konecranes, Inc.