July PR

Lifting systems serve to load and unload containers with International Organization for Standardization (ISO) corners, if suitable infrastructure such as cranes or mobile cranes are not available.

The main application for this device lies in the field of military logistics, which is what it was originally developed for. In fact its robust construction and field use capabilities are just the characteristics that the Swiss federal railways (SBB) require for civil use.

The Swiss federal railways have a rail network of more than 3,000km that they must maintain accordingly. One peculiarity is the complete electrification of the rail network.

In order to move a 40ft technical container with maximum 20t weight from a central location to the point of use, the SBB uses a standard flatbed car.

The loading of the container onto the car was not the problem. The hall crane can take care of this along with an appropriate load sling. However, the technical module must be unloaded outside, on the tracks and it must remain there for a certain time.

In addition, the loading of containers with a crane means that the overhead line must always be temporarily removed and this is laborious and expensive.

The unloading of the technical module has now been taken over by a type 1889.20, swivelling, mobile lifting system from haacon, which is attached to the container and has an electrical drive.

SBB AG project manager Thomas Häni said: "We can unload the container on-site with the lifting system from haacon, without any additional equipment."

The mobile lifting systems from haacon are distinguished by simple handling, a high degree of user-friendliness, sturdiness and rapid deployment in the field. Thus, a container can be lifted off the carrier vehicle and set down within a few minutes.

Mr Häni added: "We were not able to find a comparable system on the market to resolve our needs."

Product characteristics

Mobile lifting devices lift and lower containers if there is no infrastructure for moving heavy loads available. Heat, cold, stiff breezes and even icy temperatures will not unsettle the lifting systems from haacon.

A system normally comprises four supports, whereby the payload of the individual supports amounts to half of the load bearing capacity of the complete system. This provides a very high level of operational safety. The devices are designed for assembly and operation by two people.

Depending on the application, the following technical characteristics can be fulfilled:
Container weight up to 20t, Lift height up to 1,750 mm (optional maximum: 2,000 mm), attachment possible to ISO corners and positional checking.

The innovative automatic position control is a feature of the lifting systems from haacon. It enables parallel lifting and lowering on uneven areas, automatic position detection, auto-levelling to the horizontal with +/- 0.1 degrees accuracy, safety shutdown in the event of the permissible incline of 3.5 degrees (or more if planned) being exceeded.

The following customer-specific solutions are offered alongside the standard products:

  • Different lift heights
  • Modified payloads
  • Specially adapted fastenings and locking systems
  • Special load distribution plates
  • Load systems for simple and secure transportation
  • Tailor-made solutions for the case in question
  • Support and project-accompanying services with customer developments
  • Special colours and coatings.

Furthermore, haacon offers services such as engineering and special designs as well as a global service. These encompass maintenance / repair tasks, training, installation, assembly work, generation of hazard assessments, safety-related testing per country-specific guidelines as well as training courses.


For many years now, various different international branches of the services have been relying on the mobile lifting systems from haacon for lifting and moving heavy loads. There are more than 5,000 systems in use throughout the world in the field of container handling (positioning, rolling and aircraft loading systems). They continue to impress with their high levels of robustness and low maintenance requirements.

A few years ago haacon delivered several hundred sets of the ‘MTM’ 1350 F (Manutention-Transport-Mobile) to the French Air Force, an aircraft transportable container transport device developed specially for the French armed services.

Also, set-down supports for the aircraft transportable radar detection system ‘GM 400’ (Ground Master GM 400 Thales Raytheon Systems 3D air defence radar).

haacon has delivered three aircraft loading systems with electrical motor drive for air surveillance units to the British company Marshall, for deployment in their Saudi Arabian and Turkish sites.

The firm is currently developing a levelling system for radar systems for the Turkish Armed Services within the scope of the ‘NUROL’ project.

India has ordered five 1889.20 (20 t) prototypes with 230V automatic levelling for the ‘Medium Range Surface to Air Missile’ project. These lifting devices are installed on a telecommunications container.