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Spectacular dredging in the Swiss Alps

A Liebherr duty cycle crawler crane on an adventurous mission in the midst of an imposing mountain backdrop in the Canton of Ticino

A big responsibility

Sediments on the filter grids of the Lake Luzzone reservoir cause operation problems to the power station in Olivone. Yann Blouet, one of the two operators on this project, took over the mission of removing 160,000 yd³ (125,000 m³) of accumulated material.

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The king of the hill

Before reaching the work site, a 750-ft (225-m) high reservoir dam had to be crossed. Due to the extremely limited amount of space, the uppercarriage and the undercarriage were delivered separately. S.E. Levage, one contractor on the project, took the challenge of traveling the difficult road.

Challenge all along

In order to pass through the two narrow tunnels the duty cycle crawler crane had to be transferred to a smaller carrier shortly before its destination. The maximum transport width of a mere 11.5 ft (3.5 m) was an enormous advantage.

Precise planning

The high number of bends in the last stretch of the road alone were not easy – the bad weather with heavy rainfall and the danger of falling rock made it an even bigger challenge.

The calm after the storm

The assembly of the HS 8130 HD was carried out directly on the shore of the reservoir with the aid of a Liebherr mobile crane. Once the 143-US-ton (130-metric-ton) duty cycle crawler crane was all set-up, one last step was left before work could begin on this out-of-the-ordinary project.


The duty cycle crawler crane was driven onto and mounted on a barge, which was also assembled on-site. At this point, work could begin! The smooth and precise control system provides for easy handling of the machine, at depths of up to 650 ft (200 m).

A big hand for this project

The HS 8130 HD was equipped with a specially produced mechanical clamshell bucket from Negrini. Thanks to its large filling capacity of 13 yd³ (10 m³), an average hourly handling performance of about 170 yd³ (130 m³) can be achieved.

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