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31 May 2011

MHT for the RAN

NTP Forklifts Australia has recently delivered three MHT10160 heavy lift telehandlers to RAN, providing a dock based, ship to shore materials handling capability.

Traditionally the navy has used a combination of large ship to shore and mobile slewing cranes for handling heavy materials, containers or palletized loads onto a ships deck. This system is not time efficient when handling lower quantities of supplies due to set up and pull down times involved when utilizing cranes, and once set up, the crane does not have the ability to travel to the load storage area – therefore the load must be taken to the crane prior to transferring to the ship, therefore, utilizing additional MHE and personnel. Due to the inconvenience factor of utilizing cranes for handling lower volume loads, it was quite common for sailors to line up along the gang plank and manually transfer the load to the ship – not unlike the method adopted by Captain Cook over 200 years ago!

The idea of utilizing a heavy lift telehandler for this purpose was spawned by Mr Greg Goodieson, himself a RAN Veteran. Whilst on deployment in East Timor, Mr Goodieson saw a smaller Manitou Telehandler loading barges and smaller ships. Mr Goodieson noted how efficiently these vessels were being loaded. This was the beginning of a 10 year campaign for Mr Goodieson to introduce this efficiency and concept into the RAN,

“This new found capability will enable our ships to be loaded in a far more time / personnel effective manner – this capability has the potential to revolutionalize materials handling within RAN” Mr Goodieson said.

Due to the large variety of goods being handled, NTP Forklifts Australia supplied 2 different carriages with integral sideshift, fork positioner and varying fork tyne lengths. The attachments are interchangeable and can be swapped over in under 3 minutes by a single operator with out any tooling requirement.

The larger carriage is 2400mm wide and is fitted with 2500mm fork tynes for handling ISO containers, tricons and larger loads – providing a residual lift capacity of 10000kg at 1200mm load centres and maximum forward reach of 6.1 meters. The smaller attachment is 1700mm wide and fitted with 1200mm long forks for handling palletized and smaller loads and provides a residual lift capacity of 16000kg at 600mm load centres.

The Manitou MHT 10610 is powered by a Mercedes Benz turbo diesel engine that delivers 170 HP. The units were also supplied with a tyre inflation system, black out lighting and tie down/sling points.

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