contact us

The CRAMIC Program (CRane dynaMICs)

The Challenge

Historically, it has been assumed that cranes behave in a static or cyclic manner. However, recent observation proves that due to higher speeds and loads, cranes are displaying dynamic behaviour which is resulting in significant damage to the crane, the track and its supporting foundations. This adversely affects the integrity of the crane rail system leading to reduced performance, system down time and costly repairs.

As the challenges for crane rail systems continue to increase, it is essential that a solution is found to the adverse affects of dynamic crane behaviour. The CRAMIC (CRane dynAMICs) program has been established to focus on this and provide a solution by:

  • Undertaking the necessary research to provide valuable data and insight into dynamic behaviour
  • Better understanding the negative impacts such behaviours have on the crane rail system
  • Building that learning into the design phase of new products and systems
  • Enabling the customer to make better informed decisions and specifications

Program preparation research has recently been completed and has resulted in the discovery of a number of phenomena which will be addressed. These include:

  • Flexibility of cranes
  • Movement of loads
  • Wheel/rail contact
  • Uneven support

These serve as the focus for activity throughout the program.

Research & Experiments

Theoretical models and extensive tests have been performed during this 3 year research program.

MBS - Multibody Simulations
FEA - Finite Element Analysis
Ballast Tracks
DEM - Discrete Elements Model
Technology of the track
Track Monitoring

MBS - Multibody Simulations

To understand the flexibility of the crane and the influence of dynamic loads, a first ASC rigid body model is created with a software developed by the University of Louvain. This model is improved and validated by onsite testing with a completely equipped crane of sensors and instrumented axles in the boogies and wheels. 

FEA - Finite Element Analysis

Once the real loads on each wheel are known, a finite elements model of the track is created and ready to understand the behavior of these loads on the ground, giving us the capacity to improve and optimize the track with our patented Gantrex products. 

Ballast Tracks

Ballast tracks induce larger permanent rail displacements, therefore CRAMIC focused on it developing different products and studies to minimize as much as possible the permanent displacements of the tracks in the 3 directions. 

DEM - Discrete Elements Model

An important component of ballast tracks are the sleepers; therefore a study has been done creating a Discrete Elements Model to understand the behavior of each stone within the ballast. This model is validated by testing the lateral resistance of real size sleepers in a lab. Combining DEM, FEA and lab testing, a Gantrex Sleeper is under development to minimize vertical and lateral settlements, respecting the needed elasticity of a ballast track. 

Technology of the track

Thinking in future and always offering to our customers the best solution for each track, Gantrex tested different configuration of tracks such as STS crane, STS trolley track, ASC continuous and discontinuous track, to optimize the fastening system and provide more stable configurations for heavier cranes in a future with higher dynamic loads. 

The measurement was carried out by using a high-resolution 3D camera. 

Track Monitoring

Based on IoT technology with LoRa protocol, the monitoring of the track is an improvement in efficiency because our customers will be always warned if their tracks are moving more than necessary; giving them the opportunity to solve the problem before reducing the efficiency or stopping the crane, and therefore, saving time and money. 


MBS ASC Model 

  • Effect of track wear 
  • Effect of track misalignment 
  • Effect of wheel wear 
  • Effect of wheel misalignment 
  • Wheel loads considering dynamic forces 

Track Technology Optimization 

  • Continuous mounting for ASC 
  • Discontinuous mounting for ASC 
  • Discontinuous mounting with Gantrex Adjustable Chair 
  • Continuous mounting for STS 
  • Trolley track for STS 

Ballast Track for ASC 

  • Ballast track installation 
  • Optimization of lateral reinforcement 
  • Rail creeping solution 
  • HSR Gantrex Sleeper 

Track Monitoring 

  • Track displacement with IoT technology 
  • Ballast track assessment 
  • Ground track inspection 


We are experts in our field and are committed to designing and delivering the most innovative and technically superior crane rail solutions for our customers. It is vital that we use the expertise that we have to help shape the future of crane rail systems and ensure that we work with industry leaders to design solutions that will improve the efficiency and performance of the crane runway now and for the future.


CRAMIC is a 3 year research program. Launching in September 2019 it will follow a phased schedule as below:

  • Phase 1 – Impact Scope: Master and quantify the impact of the dynamic effects.
  • Phase 2 – Solution Development: Develop new or improve existing crane track technologies to provide a solution to the challenge.
  • Phase 3 – Performance Monitoring: Equip new or existing crane tracks with monitoring tools to organize maintenance.

Throughout each phase, the CRAMIC teams will analyse findings and draw practical conclusions. These findings will be shared via our website. You can also follow program progress through updates made available on LinkedIn.

Click Here To Follow Us On LinkedIn Logo LinkedIn - Téléchargement Gratuit en PNG (2022)


The CRAMIC program is a collaboration between Gantrex, SENSY, UCLouvain and BBRI. Each of the organisations will play a key role throughout the program according to their specific areas of expertise.

  • SENSY – Specialist manufacturers of weighing and monitoring technologies
  • BBRI – Concrete Specialist
  • University of Louvain – Modelling, simulation and validation

We are delighted to have their support as specialists in their field.

Further Information

If you would like any further information on the CRAMIC program contact the Program Leader here.

Click here to discover how innovation is part of Gantrex DNA.