Cargotec has launched MacRack, a new economical electric-drive system that combines the lift and drive operations for side-rolling hatch covers and so makes separate hatch cover lifters obsolete. The combined rack-and-pinion drive and lifter employs an enhanced control system and is based on just one electric motor per hatch cover panel.
When opening hatch covers a lever mechanism converts the electric motor’s rotating motion into a vertical movement, providing the lifting force needed. When closing, the mechanism lowers the covers and pushes them together to achieve the correct amount of rubber compression and tightness.
As with all first-generation technology, improvements were needed and the development project focusing on the safety, technical limitations and cost of electric drives resulted in the launch of MacRack. After extensive tests and a lengthy component selection process, the first orders were signed in 2006. Twelve ships using E-Roll systems are in service and this number is growing rapidly - another 11 shipsets of equipment are on order and about 30 more are in the pipeline.