CRS Rotainer®

Capability Statement with Historic Overview

Concept to Completion

(Condensed Version. Several recent projects, customer details with some locations omitted at the request of our clients)

Suppliers & Original Equipment Manufacturers (O.E.M) of 

Container Rotations Systems - Heavy & Light Duty Open Top Rotatable Containers - Container Lids and Lock systems  - Special High Volume Rotatable Containers - Lid Lifting System - Ezzeloaders  - Specialised 20ft Spreaders - Container Tipplers - Mechanical Engineering Solutions - Electrical Engineering & Automation - Commissioning Services - Operators Training - Consultancy or Site Assessments - Heavy Duty Container Trailers - Container Spill Trailers

Brief History of CRS, the 'Then & Now'.

2009. How It Started

CRS's parent company (AMMESA) was commissioned by D.P.W South Australia  undertake an engineering review on modern day container rotators. Their (D.P.W) investigation revealed that, at the time, there was no current manufacturer or suppliers of such equipment existing Globally. 

The basic criteria was to source a local supplier of container rotators to cater for an influx of Mid Tier Mining Companies coming on line with their high value concentrates for export..

This concentrate was planned to be transported to the Ports in open top shipping containers for storage then unloaded directly to ships holds.

To meet D.P.W guidelines, the rotators would need to be approximately 12 tonnes in tare weight with the capability of lifting containers with a minimum 38 tonnes while complying to the  engineering criteria of the latest Post Panamax STS cranes.

Historic container rotators (no longer available) manufactured in the late 70's 80's where flimsy and rudimentary in construction or had tare weight of over 22 tonnes, they needed longitudinal support arms to strengthen the main frame and where operated by low tech chain and sprocket drive system, therefore a re-think was inevitable.

As specialised mining evolved, the opportunity was seized by CRS (formally AMMESA), the 'Rotainer®' brand came to fruition.  I.P and the original brand 'Rotainer®'  secured, registered and the World's first top lift, 360 degree container rotator was fully engineered readied for production.

2010. Rotainer Number 1.  An Industry Game Changer

IMX Resources, an Australian Iron Ore Miner was the first company to take up this new technology with the initial Rotainer® H.D being installed at D.P.W's container terminal, South Australia. This was a big ask at the time as only 1 Rotainer® H.D  was order to cater to handimax vessels of 70,000 DWT.  As the industry watched, the Rotainer delivered, it proved to be highly successful in this pilot programme with other opportunities in the pipeline to follow not long after once the first  Rotainer proved it worth in strength and reliability.

Furthermore, around this time Oz Minerals, an Australian premier copper concentrate mining company offered interested in this new technology. Their requirements was to use fully sealed containers with some form of automated lid opening mechanism.

During and independent compliance review to meet latest environmental guidelines it was discovered that Generic, 'off the self', open top containers did not meet the mechanical dynamics required at the D.P.W site, it became evident that their was a need  for a purpose design, heavy duty, open top rotatable container. 

It was at this time, the Australian company Container Rotation Systems Pty Ltd was establish to fully focus on and developing this market segment.

2011. CRS Invented and Installed the Very First Automated Lid Lifting System.

Oz Minerals ordered a Rotainer® H.D with CRS's newly developed automated lid lid lifting system.  CRS Lidliftor® was the first automated lid lifting system for top lift container rotators in the the World, another CRS first. Fact!

The Rotorcon® Brand, (rotatable container) the World's First Purpose Design Rotatable Container also introduced to the market around that time, this was another CRS milestone achievement in the development of the container rotation industry.

The industry continued to develop in that region with many thousands of containers being handled by Rotainer® container rotators.

Mining Companies such as Oz Minerals, Cristal Mining, Hillgrove Resources all used the CRS Rotainer H.D to export their products through South Australian Ports.

Interestingly, after 12 years Rotainer® H.D, serial number 001 is still in full operation today, a testament to CRS quality products.

2012. First Ship Gear Rotainer® Delivered

1. Further evolution of the industry saw the need for a container rotator for generic 1450mm Half Heights containers.  At the request of a Stevedoring Company based in Townsville, North Queensland and to meet clients needs and ships crane specifications, CRS had to develop a unit that had a tare weight of 6000kgs with a maximum gross lift of 28,000.kgs. CRS developed the Rotainer M.D for ships gear. This lightweight unit was another 'World First' for the containerised bulk handling industry

To  achieve these specification, CRS had to develop a new lightweight steel frame structure with a new, unique, simple, hydraulic drive mechanism for 180 degree rotation. After a long period of research and development CRS released and Patented it own proprietary mechanical drive system, This system has been so cost effective and reliable it stays in continuous production. 

2. Progress moved to the food industry with 3 units Rotainer® H.D being commissioned in Thailand.  These units handled raw sugar in CRS specially designed high volume Maxitainer® container.  This was a 3 crane STS operation, a highly successful operation, which consistently sets record loads rates 65,000 tonnes in less that 24 hours, No other container rotator supplier can make this claim.

2013. Eritrea, A Global Success for CRS.

Nevsun Resources approached CRS with a problem. Their Bisha Mine, Eritrea, situation close to the Sudanese Border, some 350kms from the Sea Port of Massawa was transitioning from Gold Bullion production to copper and zinc DSO export.(Direct Shipping Ore). The main highway has over 150 switch back corners, rises to an elevation of 2325m above sea level in just 120kms. 

The plan was to containerise the ore concentrate and use a Rotainer® system for ship loading at Massawa Port.

After a 4 day trek from Australia to the Bisha Mine site, CRS management conducted a full route survey with consolidation of 15 years worth of consultants documentation and recommendations, following several meetings with Senior Government and Mine officials, CRS was awarded a full 'Turn Key' project of procurement, delivery, installation and commissioning of the complete concentrate handling from the Bisha Mine to the Massawa Port.

Several trips to Europe, China amongst other Counties saw the procurement of all the equipment with the successful arrival of all the machinery on site within the programed time frame.

CRS organisational skills saw a 600 tonne mobile harbour crane delivered to the Port, fully assemble and commissioned ex Rotterdam via a heavy lift ship, several thousand containers Ex China, Rotainers® and Ezzloadores® Ex Australia , Reach Starkers and Forklifts Ex Europe, 100 specially designed prime mover trucks and lightweight container trailers Ex China all via CRS.

CRS had a team of 6 highly skilled staff on site for extend periods for assembly, commissioning with operational and start up training.

CRS was, and still is the only one stop supplier capable of handling such a mammoth project.

8 years on, CRS still fully supports their original supply with additional equipment as needed, spare parts and technical support, further testament to CRS industry experience, dedication, reliability and professionalism.

2014. The Design of the Very Frist Container Rotator for Reach Stackers

The Rotainer R.S (Reach Stacker) was developed at the request of a major CRS Rotainer® client. Their need was for a multifunctional container rotator that could be quickly deployed at any location for short or long term projects, it had to be self powered with remote control,  be able to work under STS Crane, Mobile Harbour Cranes Reach Stacker and Ships Gear with a gross lift of 38,000kgs

To meet the required specifications, the recently patented, innovative,  CRS hydraulic crank arm system was engineered into the basic Rotainer H.D steel structure. The result is a highly versatile '3 in i' container rotator, another 'World First' for the industry and CRS with several units operating in Counties such as the P.R.O.C (Peoples Republic of China

2015. CRS Container Tippler Delivered

Chilean Copper producers, Codelco and Anglo American, the World Largest Copper Miners approached their Port Operators, Puerto Ventanas, Chile, with a view to increase export capacity, move away from using antiquated 'kibble' technology for transporting concentrates to more modern 'Worlds Best Practice' closed container systems. 

The feasibility review highlighted that to compete this upgrade  would require an investment of upwards of $20Mill USD in infrastructure updates. Limitations on available space amongst other things such as an established rail network made traditional containers rotator (Rotainer) systems unusable.  CRS was contacted through it Chilean distributor Contekner,  to review the application and look to offer a solution. 

CRS, thinking out side of the square, proposed a completely new concept. CRS offered a fixed base 'ContainerTippler' system, elevated on stilts on a specially engineered frame structure some 10 metres above an established underground conveyor network. Containers would be lifted directly from rails cars, placed in the proposed 'ContainerTippler' with the lids automatically unlocked and removed by a purpose built, CRS design, 20ft contsiner spreader prior to rotation.

After a lengthy review on competitive proposals the CRS concept was adopted and our engineering team set out to engineer a complete, 'turn key'  container handling system for this particular project, 

The complete tippler system successfully awarded to CRS. The system was then fully pre-fabricated in CRS's Sydney factory under the watch-full eyes of a Lloyd's Registered Representative. It was fully load tested for a period of time, disassembled, containerised and sent to Chile, South America for installation in the building by local contractor's.

Due to Chilean seismic conditions, the system had to be 'Earthquake' approved therefore, additional civil works were required to comply with local construction laws for structural footing reinforcement, this was also part of the CRS scope of supply.  Analysis and engineering for this was undertake in Australia with review from local Chilean officials and civil engineers.

This project went together perfectly and without issues, since installation the Rotainer tippler has completed approximatey100,000 fully loaded rotations with no major lost time occurrences or component change outs. Further testament to CRS industry experience and capabilities.

Further to the above, the system required full automation.  CRS sent an Australian Engineering team to site for several weeks to complete necessary electrical upgrades.

A very successful project and a Win Win for all involved.

2016. Taiwan - A new Destination. 

A major milestone was achieved during this period with a complete Rotainer® R.S system being exported to the Peoples Republic of China.  This equipment is used on a Liebherr Mobile Harbour Crane.  

Rotainer® R.S's, Rotorcon® Containers,  CRS Ezzeloadore® ans CRS Lidliftor® and Lidgripper® were exported to a major Stevedore to cater for high volumes of copper concentrate being imported from Latin America. This particular application involves breaking down large volumes of concentrates into smaller parcels then being blended in large sheds to the consistency required by the consumers, then re'loaded into ships for final delivery.

CRS was proud of this opportunity, to be able to export Australian manufactured products to China is reassurance of CRS quality and performance and an accolade in itself. 

2017. Rotainer Eurospce is Born

Around this period enquiries were coming in from further afield, particularly the European region.  A review of open top containers entering the market since the Rotainer inception clearly indicated ISO container loads of around 32 tonnes +/- were becoming the industry standard.

The question continually asked was 'Why are container rotators designs based on traditional 20/40 container spreader format?'

The answer was obvious. Traditional spreader manufactures found it easier to copy historic, obsolete container rotator formats or modify their general container spreaders rather invest in latest engineering techniques to come up with a new innovative, purpose design container rotators. 

Reviewing latest innovative technology in the Mobile Hydraulic Crane and Mining industries, it became clear that single beam construction had a future for container rotators. CRS took this  engineering technology and adapted it onto their container rotators. 

CRS then set out to design, engineer and certify a completely new concept for container rotators with the following specifications,

1.Single, central beam construction that enclosed operating components internally to protect products being handled with consideration to environmental awareness.

2.Its should be modulated in design, with options in heights and gross lifting weights from 32-38-42 tonnes. 

3. It would operated by either  Diesel/Hydraulic or Electric/Hydraulic with all CRS standard operational options.

4. Automated lid lifting would be available on the machine as an option. 

5. It must be able to work in hot, humid tropical regions up to +60c right down to areas with temperatures consistently below -20c.

6. It needed to be simpler with less moving parts compared to previous models.

7. It has to be transported globally by containerisation, pre-tested ex factory, ready to operate with assembly on site in less than 1 working day.

8. The 'one design'  systems must work on a) Ships Cranes b) Mobile Harbour Cranes c) Ship to Shore Cranes d) Reach Stacker's.    

9. Its required be low in maintenance with large moving bearings  'Sealed for Life' 

10. To be the best quality, more reliable than any other unit on the market with a sell price lower than any comparative unit.

11. It must have180 degree rotation to empty to offer reduced dust emissions with the capability of optional loading ships in N-S-E-W directions with optional rotating head frames.

The CRS Rotainer Eurospec Range of Container Rotators came to fruition.

2018. Major milestones were achieved around this period.

Firstly, CRS Rotainer® progressed to another Country with a major Canadian Stevedore taking up the first Rotainer® Eurospec 32 for Ships Gear. The location for  this particular  operation was at Beau Comeau located 500kms North of Quebec City.

After several trips to site by CRS management, the specifications where finalised for Rotainer Euospec 32 fitted with CRS's 'Artic Pack'. which allowed our Diesel/Hydraulic system to operate at -20c for continuous periods. This was a Comalco operation and the our Rotorcon® Heavy Duty 1800mm high containers were specified for the project due to the superior design and strength for freezing conditions.

Both the Rotianer® and Rotorcon® container were subject to blizzard conditions during commissioning to prove their operating capability the most extreme weather conditions.

Anther highly successful project for the CRS team. 

Secondly, Lend Lease, one of World Largest Construction and Management Companies, faced a problem at the new 'Star City' Casino construction project that was about to commence at Barangaroo, Darling Harbour, Sydney, Australia.  At the time of commencement it was the Southern Hemispheres largest constriction project.

To meet financial and development deadlines with a view to bring the construction of this prestigious building to completion on time, Lend Lease undertook a feasibility review on a different approach to,

a) Undersea contaminated sub-soil,

b) Transportation of highly toxic spoil,

c) How to implement their new 'Buld up - Build Down' construction methods.

CRS was approached to review a solution with the project consortium.  Combined consultation  with Lend Lease's Civil Contractors, CRS offer a solution to develop a specialised underground container loading system. Sealed containers were to be loaded several floors below sea level, elevated  to ground level via 2, purpose built, overhead gantry crane structures then transported to an E.P.A, environmentally approved contaminated waste facility.

containers. CRS also developed a new Rotainer® Eurospec 32 specifically for the project to be use on Reach Stacker's.  Over 60 truck loads per day, 6 days per week, for over 18 months saw the completion of these underground works completes on time and within budget.

Furthermore to meet State Government and Road Transport Regulation on "Risk Mitigation' in the event of a vehicle accident or, in worst case scenario, a truck roll over, CRS developed a new, innovative,  container lid locking system that positively locks the lid of an open top container firmly in place. 

This project was so successful many environmental and industry awards and accolades were forthcoming, Global interest in this new CRS's newly patented technology is on the increase with further projects to come on line for CRS in the not too distance future.

CRS is proud of the fact that they are  the only supplier in the  container rotation industry that could offer Lend Lease such a simple solution for a complexed problem. 

CRS was proud to part of this project by offering innovative a solution to such well respect, Globally based, High Profile Construction Company.

2019. Eurpope Opens up for CRS

2 New European markets open up for CRS, Lithuania for food grade products and Russia for Coal and Scrap metal

Lithuania was a food grade loading operation utilising a CRS Rotainer® Eurospec 38 upgraded to use with Rotorcon® 2900mm heavy duty containers. A CRS head frame was specially adapted so that CRS newly developed, innovate  'E Link', low centre of gravity hook connection could be utilised to allow for quick connection to either Liebherr or Gottwald MHC's.

St Petersburg Russia saw installations for Scrap metal loading and other for a high volume Coal Export Terminal at Ulst Luga, one of Russia's largest bulk export region. 

The scrap metal operation saw the release of CRS's 2900mm Scraptainer®, a highly modified CRS Rotorcon® container catering to the rigours of handling large  volumes of scrap metal fast and efficiently making their current skip bin system antiquated and obsolete.

Ulst Luga. CRS was offered an opportunity to participate in a Coal operation that would involve the updating of 4 units, 10 year old, Kone STS cranes.  CRS's customer having recently received a contract to load approximately 2 Million tonnes of coal in a short term would be offer an extension to continue should loading rates promoted by CRS be achieved.

The clients current method of operation was a large skip bins operation that just did meet the outputs required. CRS, through their local agent offered the Rotainer at the solution.

35 to 40 container movements per crane was the criteria CRS had to comply with to be awarded the project. To enhance the client expectations and loading rates, CRS offered to develop a special, electronically managed, rotating head frame that would allow for N-S-E-W discharge which offered to dramatically increases loading rates rates.

CRS solution was 4 units, Rotainer Eurospec 38, with rotating head frames with CRS's Coaltainer®, 2900mm heavy duty container. After a lengthy appraisal of competitive equipment, CRS was offered the supply for this project, furthermore, the client required a one source of supply, one source of responsibility procurement process, something only CRS can offer.

The project had been running successfully for just on 2 years, sometimes in blizzard conditions down to -28c

Simple facts after 2 years of service.

1 Rotainer Eurospec 38 has completed 39,000 cylces with no major component change-outs or lost time breakdowns.

Realistic average container loads 28 tonnes= 1,092,000 tonnes Coal loaded per Rotainer.

7000 cycles per CRS Coaltainer® = 3500 cycles per year. 

CRS knows of no other, Open Top, High Cube Containers to have completed this amount of cycles in such a short periods of time, a record in anyones account, further testament to the quality of CRS's well designed, well engineered, high quality products. A remarkable return on investment.

2020. A New Decade - New Challengers - A different World - Alternative Approach

As Covid 19 took its toll on the World, life continued, albeit slowly, with a number of pre-Covid projects coming on line. New challengers with a re-think of the way things were done bought the best of innovation out in many Companies whilst some remained stagnant.

Higher Capacity Equilibrium cranes offing new technologies in mobile cranes with greater performance were entering the traditional Mobile Harbour Crane market. A well respected Russian Port Operator asked CRS to provide a competitive offer against several other suppliers of Container Rotators.

Considering 90% of the World's open top container are handled by Mobile Harbour Cranes, reviewing the potential uptake on these style fixed boom Equilibrium Cranes, CRS engineering team believed it was time for a re-think on these style attachments for such high performance. fixed boom cranes. 

CRS reviewed the clients contractual requirements on anticipated loading rates. We also looked at how the dynamics of equilibrium cranes, combined this with CRS 13 years of container rotation knowledge. CRS was convinced that traditional container rotators using slings or chains to attach to the hook would not deliver the load rates expected. CRS application review offered the port operators a completely New Concept in single beam container rotator design.

The client embraced the technology offered whole heatedly, promptly placed orders after concept presentation and the Rotainer Eurospec 42MH (MH=Material Handler) came to fruition.

The client was so impressed with the Rotainer MH, additional orders were forthcoming soon thereafter, some with CRS Innovative, Patented, Variable Arm System which allows the one Rotainer to cater to various heights in open top container from 1450mm to 2900mm.   

Another 'Worlds First' for forward thinking, innovative design in container rotator technology, a proud industry achievement for CRS. From  Concept to Completion ready for export in only a few months. 

2021. Technological Advancements Due to Covid Restrictions

As the Covid crisis was coming to end pre-covid enquires were starting to accelerate. Pipeline projects that were put on hold began to move forwards. 

Supplier issues caused delivery delays so many interested parties accepted the fact that them to meet post Covid operation deadlines, the early placement of  equipment orders confirmed early delivery.

2021 also saw another proud milestone was the  delivery of our highly sought after Rotainer Eurospec 38 R.S (Reachstaker) into mainland China. To facilitate a smooth transition into this emerging market combined with Border closures the CRS team introduced further new technology into our product portfolio which included the following;

1. ISG = Innovative Second Generation Electronics, simpler to install, easier to service.

2. CSS = Container Support System allow use of standard, open top, general purpose containers

3. RRM = Rotainer Remote Monitoring app. Allows remote access by the O.E.M for instant fault diagnostics and programming.

2022. More Innovative Products

2022 saw the release of our innovative, high capacity food grade containers. These large containers cater for the 'High Volume - Low Value' segment of the containerised bulk handling. With cubic capacities of 55 cubic metres make CRS's innovative designs the the largest, by volume, currently available to the Containerised Bulk Handling Industry.








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