Single Girder crane enhancing manufacturing capabilities!


Programmable handling system designed for a surface treatment plant at a gear manufacturing company.
Perfect adherence to the cycle time enhances quality and productivity

About Triveni Engineering & Industries Limited

Triveni Engineering & Industries Limited (TEIL) is among the three largest sugar manufacturers in India, and the market leader in its engineering business comprising of steam turbines, high-speed gears, gearboxes and water treatment solutions.

Triveni Gears, the Gear Business Group of TEIL, has a factory in Mysore, Karnataka. The group is the largest manufacturer of high-speed gears and gearboxes in India for steam turbines, gas turbines, compressors, pumps, blowers as well as special purpose industry applications. Reliability built through superior manufacturing technology, and high product quality combined with 38 years of rich experience in advanced technology gears are the key strengths of the company.

Handling challenges

To increase the manufacturing capacity, Triveni Gears was setting up an additional semi-automated, gear manufacturing plant. As part of the gear manufacturing process, after hobbing, every gear undergoes heat treatment. Heat treatment optimises the performance and extends the service life of the gear by altering its chemical, metallurgical and physical properties. Subsequently, the gear undergoes surface treatment process for further enhancement in durability, quality and reliability. The project team of Triveni Engineering was considering the automation of the material handling operations of the new surface treatment plant.

The surface treatment process employed at Triveni Gears is a 12 tank process wherein gears have to be dipped/soaked sequentially into each tank for a stipulated duration. The duration of the dipping/soaking in each tank has to be meticulously adhered to for ensuring desired results.

To automate the handling of gears throughout the surface treatment process and to adhere to the desired cycle time, it was essential to develop a programmable solution. The customer was requiring flexibility in programming so as to easily change the parameters to accommodate change in requirements. From the customer's perception, getting a programmable overhead crane which could meet the precision handling requirements was indeed challenging. And that too, within the available time frame, with a surety of service support.

Solution from ElectroMech

When the customer approached us with the requirement, our team invested time in carefully understanding the process, the parameters, customer expectations as well as future needs.

Considering the weight of the gears and the overall area of the surface treatment plant, a single girder crane of 5t SWL with 4.59m span, fitted with industry-favourite and proven ElectroMech Hoist was recommended. In order to exercise precise control on process parameters, it was essential that the crane be automated and hence, powered with a PLC.

After understanding the process and logic, the complete system architecture and programming were developed in such a manner that the crane can perform all the operations sequentially even in Auto mode. Crane operations can be programmed using HMI for Auto mode and RRC/Pendant while in Manual mode.

The motion of all the drive motors is controlled via Variable Frequency Drive (VFD), which allows precision control. Seamless, wire-free communication between HMI and PLC is achieved using industrial Wi-Fi routers at both the ends.

For absolute position sensing, WCS sensors are used in travel motions. Special encoders are fitted to provide continuous feedback about the position of the hoist to the PLC.


Advanced controller with simple programming for simplified operations

With the help of PLC, the Operation Cycle is made extremely simple. The overall process is carried out in the following steps,

  • As demanded by the customer, the HOME position for the AUTO cycle start is defined.
  • Once the AUTO button from HMI is pressed, the configuration changes to AUTO mode from MANUAL.
  • As soon as the crane reaches the HOME position, an audiovisual signal (green light and buzzer) alerts the operator.
  • The crane remains in the idling condition while the operator loads the material.
  • Once the loading is complete, the operator has to press the START button and the crane automatically moves towards the tanks to perform the predefined sequence of operations as below,
    • The hoist moves up till the defined hoisting limit (as defined by the operator via HMI).
    • The crane travels (LT) the predefined distance to reach the first tank.
    • The load is lowered into the tank (as per the set limit) and halts for the predefined duration.
    • The process is repeated for the remaining tanks.
    • When the cycle is completed, the operator presses the AUTO COMPLETE BUTTON on the HMI to switch the crane back to the MANUAL mode.
  • The material is unloaded manually after the set duration.

More features for safety, flexibility and operator-friendliness

  • Emergency stop button – The operator can stop the crane in seconds simply by pressing the EMERGENCY switch.
  • The entire Auto operation can be switched to Manual mode.
  • Visual markings on the gantry and crane girder allow the operator to quickly understand LT and Hook positions. The following visual markings are provided:
    • Indicate start position
    • Indicate tank position for LT movement stop
    • Indicate hook position
  • Dipping/soaking duration in all the 12 tanks and Up & Down Limit while in Auto Mode can be easily changed through HMI, offering flexibility in operations with change in process parameters.

How Triveni Engineering benefits from the ElectroMech solution

  • Precise control on process parameters – Complete programming of lowering and lifting of material means strict adherence to the dipping/soaking duration. Also, the sequence of operations is automatically followed eliminating any chance for human error or skipping a process.
  • Enhanced quality – Strict adherence to process parameters obviously results in better check on quality and reduced wastage due to improper surface treatment.
  • High productivity – The automatic process completes each cycle within a specific time duration. No idling for any reason means more cycles per shift and more productivity.
  • Safe operations – Operators do not have to enter into the process plant area and human contact with the tanks, chemicals or the load is completely avoided during the process. Also, calibrated speeds of lowering and lifting avoid splashes or spilling of hazardous chemicals.
  • High flexibility – Process durations can be changed from time to time, as per the requirement allowing greater flexibility in operations.
  • Future-ready – The advanced-technology hoist and PLC are all geared up to tackle future requirements with a possibility of upgrading the system at any time, if the need arises.

The system is operational and the customer was delighted to get the reliable solution with the completely programmable material handling solution backed by benchmark service support.


  • Automatic crane operations
  • Wireless communication between HMI and PLC
  • Programming capability
  • User-friendly programming and control console
  • Higher safety in operations
  • Restricted capital investment
  • Lower operations and maintenance costs


  • Crane built around the proven ElectroMech Hoist
  • Programmed crane with added flexibility to change programming anytime
  • HMI and PLC of robust designs
  • Robust industrial Wi-Fi routers at both the ends (HMI and PLC) for seamless wire-free communication
  • Smooth glide of load during entry and exit from the tanks to avoid chemical splashing
  • Reliable solution from ElectroMech requiring minimal maintenance


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