Name: MDS Aero Support Corp
Description: MDS Aero Support Corp is a design build company headquartered in Canada.
Problem: MDS was hired by Rolls Royce to design and construct a jet engine test facility at NASA’s Stennis Space Center. MDS contracted North American Industries to provide a crane to lift the engines onto its test stand. The client needed hooks to be positioned to one eighth of an inch accuracy when lifting $35M jet engines. Rolls Royce is doing testing for the company’s high-thrust Trent 900 and Trent 1000 jet engines, which are slated for use on the new double decker Airbus A380 and the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the next generation in wide body aircraft.
Solution: North American Industries supplied a 25 US ton double girder bridge crane with four remote controlled 15 US ton wire rope hoists. The hoists are mounted on one trolley with four pick points which can lift the jet engines. Flux vector variable frequency drives are used to monitor the position and speed of each hoist and to control the hoists for precision lifting. Attached to each hook block, the hoists also have an adjustable turnbuckle (a metal device that can be adjusted for length or tension) capable of plus or minus two inches of adjustment. The crane has two 5 US ton auxiliary monorail trolleys which ride on the bottom flange of each cross girder, used for handling smaller equipment mounted to the engine, such as intakes and instrumentation. Additional lifting equipment was supplied by North American Industries in the form of jib cranes.