Modular floating pontoon supplier Northern Pontoon used a 3,000kg working load limit (WLL) lightweight gantry crane from REID Lifting to anchor a solar system on the Langthwaite Reservoir in Lancashire, UK recently.
The floating array features approximately 3,700 pontoon modules and 3,520 solar panels. The 7,200 square-metre system will provide a megawatt of power, equivalent to the needs of 200 homes. Integral to successful installation was a PORTA-GANTRY crane from REID, which was onsite for three weeks at varying intervals during the eight-week project.
Northern Pontoon sourced the gantry, chain block, and other equipment from Gap Hire Solutions’ Lancaster Plant & Tools depot. It is a collaboration lesser known for its solar-related work, given local weather in England’s northwestern corner. However, recent advancements in solar technology mean such systems can generate power when exposed to daylight, not necessarily the warm sunshine their use might previously have been associated with.
Lisa Morris, sales manager at Northern Pontoon, said: “The gantry enabled us to drop the anchor blocks for the sea flex anchoring system. We used it to pull the ropes from the anchor block to a set tension to the attached floating array. This allows for the rise and fall of the structure. We found the solution online and, upon consultation with our contacts at Gap, the equipment was delivered to the site. We regularly source product from them and, once again, they facilitated a successful material handling solution; we would certainly consider implementing it again.”
Morris explained that the grey ‘cubes’ in the photo are pontoons that can support approximately 250kg per square metre in a single layer. In this case, the pontoon was double-stacked for added stability before the gantry was assembled on top and secured in place with ratchets. Morris reported that stability even under load was secure; the pontoon also carried personnel, equipment, safety fencing, and other equipment.
The application is another example of the versatility of the Reid lightweight gantry and davit crane range. The PORTA-GANTRY itself is renowned for its light weight, portability, ease of assembly, and safety. It offers a range of configurations, lift-ratings, and personnel lifting options, including a 5,000kg WLL version.
Based in the South of Cumbria, Northern Pontoon offers the hire and sale of modular floating pontoon systems throughout the UK, Europe, and further afield.
Chepstow, Wales-based REID was recently purchased by Pure Lifting, a holding company formed to create a global business of innovative and portable equipment.