Minneapolis, Minnesota-based Mortenson Construction is using a trio of Manitowoc Grove GHC55 telescoping crawler cranes to perform a new method of solar panel assembly and installation at the Alamo solar farms in Uvalde, Texas. Traditionally, solar panels have been constructed by adjoining several 2 ft by 3 ft modules, each requiring a separate lift. The GHC cranes operate with 100 percent pick and carry capability, increasing efficiency on the jobsite. This allows Mortenson to combine 15 or 20 modules together on a table and then carry them into place to lift about 20 ft in the air for installation. The heaviest picks weigh up to 3.5 USt.
“We have chosen these telescoping boom crawlers because, as a rule, Mortenson will not pick and carry loads on cranes with rubber tires—especially on a remote job site with off-road terrain,” said Steven Klatt, crane manager with the company. “With 100 percent pick and carry, we can prefabricate the solar panels and run the cranes back and forth from the trucks to where they are placed on the solar farm. The crawler tracks easily handle the terrain, and the GHC’s booms withstand the wind. This has increased our efficiency.”
— Solar Builder magazine