Technology Committees

Cranes Technology Committee Activities

The CTC met 8–9 February 2022, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA 
On 8 February, the CTC joined members of the Safety & Health Technology Committee (SHTC) for a tour of Steel Dynamics Inc. – Flat Roll Group Southwest-Sinton Division. The mill produced its very first coil from melt to rolled steel on 7 February 2022. The members were greeted by Thad McClone, crane crew/loco shop supervisor, who provided safety equipment for the tour. Due to the facility just beginning production, the tour was conducted via 4-wheel side-by-side transports. Included in the tour was a drive-by of the meltshop and caster, and a drive down the lengths of the hot mill, roll shop, cold mill, galvanizing line and paint line. Also noted were the scrap handling yards and the areas of planned expansion for the facility.
The CTC held their winter meeting the next day. The meeting started with each attendee introducing themselves and hearing about the activities taking place within AIST. The two CTC sessions scheduled for Monday at AISTech 2022 were reviewed. There was a request for abstracts from committee members to fill the additional available time slots. 
Nominations were then taken for the 2022–2023 CTC officer roles. Final elections for the officers will occur during the AISTech 2022 CTC meeting. 
A lengthy discussion was held regarding bringing value to future meetings for all attendees and particular producers. A subcommittee was established to focus on these initial ideas and suggestions. 
The committee next heard status updates on AIST Technical Reports No. 1 — D/C Motors (TR-1), No. 1A — A/C Motors (TR-1A), and No. 8 — Insulated Conductors for Mill Motors (TR-8). TR-1 and TR-1A are at the initial stages of being updated. TR-8 was last printed in 2008 and should be thoroughly reviewed and updated as needed. 
Following the main CTC meeting, the CTC Mill Buildings Subcommittee held a separate meeting. The subcommittee reviewed the updated version of AIST Technical Report No. 13 — Guide for the Design and Construction of Mill Buildings (TR-13) published in 2021. The group discussed topics that could be updated to improve TR-13 for the next release. 

Tim Bickel (left), Cranes Technology Committee (CTC) Mill Buildings Subcommittee chair, and Paul Thurber (right), Safety & Health Technology Committee (SHTC) vice chair, presented a plaque of appreciation to Steel Dynamics Inc. – Flat Roll Group Southwest-Sinton Division for hosting a tour for members of the SHTC and CTC on 8 February 2022.
Mark McGinley received the CTC service plaque at AISTech 2021.

The CTC met 29 June 2021, Nashville, TN USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Mark McGinley, Hall Industries Inc.

  • Vice Chair: Bobby Hamilton, Nucor Steel Tuscaloosa Inc.

  • Crane Symposium Chair: Tom Berringer, Gantrex Inc.

  • Young Professional Chair: Matt Bruels, PT Tech LLC

  • Digital Transformation Liaison: Ryan Marks, Uesco Cranes

The CTC held a virtual meeting 25 February 2021.
The CTC held a virtual meeting led by Mark McGinley. Bobby Hamilton reported on the committee’s planned sessions for AISTech 2021. There is a session scheduled for Tuesday morning and a second one Tuesday afternoon.
The group then previewed the 27th Crane Symposium, which has been rescheduled to 15–17 August 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. The location for the 28th Crane Symposium was discussed and meeting attendees ranked their preferences of five different locations.
Rich Warriner reported on the next iteration of the Argentina Crane Symposium. Although there is plenty of interest to present at such an event, planning is shelved until travel restrictions are lifted.
The CTC heard status updates for three of its Technical Report revision projects. AIST Technical Report No. 7 – Specifications for Laminated Ladle Hooks (TR-07) has been sent to the AIST Board of Directors for final approval. AIST Technical Report No. 11 – Brake Standards for Mill Duty Cranes (TR-11) is on hold until in-person Technology Committee meetings can resume. AIST Technical Report No. 13 – Guide for the Design and Construction of Mill Buildings (TR-13) is currently under review and will then be sent to the Board of Directors for final approval.

The CTC held a virtual meeting 21 January 2021.
Tim Bickel
welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked each participant to introduce themselves. This subcommittee is regarded in the industry as experts in mill building design and its main purpose is to oversee the development and revision of AIST Technical Report No. 13 (TR-13) – Guide for the Design and Construction of Mill Buildings. The subcommittee has submitted a revision of the guide to AIST for approval and publication. Although the production had been interrupted by the global pandemic, the subcommittee plans to have TR-13 published by AISTech 2021, pending final approval by the AIST Board of Directors.
The subcommittee discussed topics that were in need of updating in the next edition of TR-13, including  additional crane loading, building classifications, coatings, guidance for future expansion, building information modeling (BIM) guidance and smart buildings. The subcommittee also discussed edits to make TR-13 consistent with other AIST publications.

The CTC held a virtual meeting 28 September 2020.
The CTC discussed the crane-related abstracts for AISTech 2021 and the development of their technical session.
The group also discussed the Crane Symposium Webinars, which were held 29 September–1 October 2020. Nine presentations that were originally scheduled for the 2020 Crane Symposium were converted to a virtual platform. Included in the webinars was the opportunity for attendees to participate in virtual networking sessions following each day’s presentations.
The committee is now looking forward to organizing the 27th Crane Symposium, scheduled for 13–15 June 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. A Call for Abstracts is available at
The meeting concluded with updates from the Crane Technical Report subcommittees. Technical Report No. 7 — Specification for Ladle Hooks and Technical Report No. 13 — Guide for the Design and Construction of Mill Buildings have both been completed and they are awaiting final ballot draft review before publication. Technical Report No. 11 — Specification for Mill Motor Brakes continues to be revised by the Electrical Subcommittee of the CTC.
Prior to the meeting concluding, the members voted to postpone the decision on the format for the next meeting until more clarity has been established pertaining to in-person events.

The CTC held a virtual meeting 7 May 2020.
The CTC began their meeting with a report from Mark McGinley on the committee’s planned sessions for AISTech 2020.
Tom Berringer updated the group on the 2020 Crane Symposium, which has been rescheduled to 29 September–1 October 2020 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. The current program includes two full days of presentations from the crane industry’s most knowledgeable leaders for operations, product applications, and basic research and development. The symposium will also feature the winner of the 2020 AIST Charlie Totten Crane Innovator Award.
The 2021 Crane Symposium is scheduled for 13–15 June 2021 in Pittsburgh.
Bobby Hamilton reported that AIST Technical Report No. 7 — Specifications for Laminated Ladle Hooks was approved by the Technology Council but the subcommittee needs to resolve a few comments that were made. Cullen Ketcham reported that AIST Technical Report No. 11 — Brake Standards for Mill-Duty Cranes is still in progress, with the subcommittee scheduled to meet at the AIST headquarters in Warrendale, Pa., USA, on 21 July 2020. Ken Landau reported that AIST Technical Report No. 13 ­— Guide for the Design and Construction of Mill Buildings has been approved by both the CTC and the Technology Council and is now being prepared for Board of Directors approval.
The CTC wrapped up its virtual meeting by confirming the following 2020–2021 committee officers:

  • Chair: Mark McGinley, Hall Industries.

  • Vice chair: Bobby Hamilton, Nucor Steel Tuscaloosa Inc.

  • Crane Symposium chair: Tom Berringer, Gantrex Inc.

Members of the Cranes Technology Committee’s subcommittee on Technical Report No. 13 gathered as part of the CTC’s meeting on 4 February 2020 in Las Vegas, Nev., USA

The CTC met 4 February 2020, Las Vegas, Nev., USA.
The CTC’s winter 2020 meeting began with progress reports from the AIST Technical Report No. 11 and No. 13 revision subcommittees, who also met that day.
The committee then discussed the Charlie Totten Innovator Award. Four “champions” presented on their choice of candidate and a winner was determined by committee vote. The award will be presented at the 27th AIST Crane Symposium.
The topic then moved to the upcoming Crane Symposium, scheduled for 7–9 June 2020. The committee finalized the list of presenters and brainstormed ways to encourage attendee participation. The CTC then looked ahead to the time and location of the 28th Crane Symposium, which will be held in Milwaukee, Wis., USA.
The CTC reviewed its upcoming session at AISTech 2020 and the role of session and papers chairs were reviewed.
Nominees for the 2020–2021 CTC chair and vice chair were sought. The final vote will take place at AISTech 2020.
The meeting wrapped up with an open discussion on content featured in AIST Technical Reports and future updates.

The CTC met 2 June 2019, Louisville, KY, USA.
The meeting began with the introduction of Ken Landau, AIST staff engineer, as the new AIST committee representative for the CTC.
CTC chair Mick Foster reviewed the committee’s session at AISTech 2019 and thanked Jane MacPherson and Mike Sauer for their work as session chairs.
The final program for the 26th Crane Symposium was reviewed, and suggestions for the 27th symposium were sought.
The CTC then reviewed the status  and content of the crane-related AIST Technical Reports. It was determined that Technical Report No. 7: Specifications for Ladle Hooks and Technical Report No. 11: Brake Standards for Mill Motors require updating. Updates are slated to be complete by the CTC’s fall 2019 meeting.
Possible locations and plant tours for the CTC’s fall 2019 and winter 2020 meetings were discussed.
Mo Ahmed reported on the new AIST Digital Transformation Task Force. Chris Machut volunteered to be the CTC’s second representative on the task force.
The committee then began preliminary plans for the 27th Crane Symposium in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA, 7–9 June 2020.
To close out the meeting, Mick Foster reviewed the details of the 26th Crane Symposium, which was to begin the next day.

The CTC met 6 May 2019, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
The following officers were elected:

Chair: Mick Foster, Sterling Steel Co. LLC

Vice chair: Mark McGinley, Hall Industries Inc.

The CTC met 20–21 February 2019, Fort Worth, Texas, USA.
The meeting began with the committee members separating into their relative subcommittees: Electrical or Mechanical/Structural. The Electrical subcommittee focused their efforts on the revisions to AIST Technical Report No. 11, Brake Standards for Mill Motors. The Mechanical/Structural subcommittee focused their attention to the revisions required for AIST Technical Report No. 7, Specifications for Ladle Hooks. Both subcommittees evaluated the text of their respective documents, discussed revisions to the text and assigned any outstanding issues to members for further study. The subcommittees will continue to revise these reports for future meetings.  
On 21 February 2019, the CTC gathered to hold its business meeting. The meeting began with presentations by champions for the nominees of the 2019 Crane Innovator Award. A vote was taken and the 2019 Innovator was named. The award will be presented at the 26th Crane Symposium in June in Louisville, Ky., USA. A motion was made and carried to honor the memory of Charlie Totten by naming the award the Charlie Totten Crane Innovator Award. 
Tom Berringer then discussed the current status of the 26th Crane Symposium program and any outstanding openings, for which the CTC suggested replacements.  
The meeting concluded with Mick Foster providing a summary of the Cranes session scheduled for AISTech 2019. The six-paper session is scheduled for Monday, 6 May 2019.

The CTC met 8 November 2018, New Orleans, La., USA. A lengthy discussion was held regarding the CTC’s AISTech 2019 technical session planning. After a debate concerning having two sessions vs. their historical single session, it was voted to maintain a single session, increasing to a six-paper session that will focus on quality papers.
The CTC’s AISTech 2020 Call for Papers text was also debated. A final vote on the new text will be held at the next meeting.
Heath Hooker, CTC chair, then reviewed the activities and discussions from the 2018 Leadership Conference.
Nominations were taken for the 2019 Crane Innovator of the Year Award. Candidates were selected based on their presentations, which highlighted new technology, industry relevance and innovation. Champions will defend their nominees at the winter CTC meeting, where a final vote will be held.
Tom Berringer, Crane Symposium chair, reviewed the 2019 AIST Crane Symposium tentative program. Significant technology advancements have been made in the digital transformation of the steel industry, particularly in crane automation. Many presentations at the Crane Symposium will focus on digital transformation technology.
A review was then held regarding the AIST Technical Reports that are overseen by the CTC. It was discussed that Technical Report No. 7 — Specification for Ladle Hooks and Technical Report No. 11 — Mill Motor Brakes required revision. The Mechanical/Structural Subcommittee will review and revise Technical Report No. 7 and the Electrical Subcommittee will review and revise Technical Report No. 11.
The meeting was concluded with the recognition of a few members and their contributions, with a special note regarding Joseph Noll, longtime committee member, who passed away recently.
Following the CTC meeting, the members participated in a tour of the Port of New Orleans. During the water-based tour, the members had the opportunity to see container cranes in action as they unloaded ocean freighters. John Guidry, maintenance manager, and Ana Menes, commercial director, Port of New Orleans, were on hand to answer questions and provide additional information.

Heath Hooker (right), CTC chair, presented a plaque of appreciation to John Guidry (left) for hosting the tour of the Port of New Orleans.
Bruce Constantine (left), Tom Berringer (center) and Mick Foster (right) attended the meeting and toured the Port of New Orleans on 8 November 2018.
Heath Hooker (left) presented William Schierenbeck (right) with the CTC service plaque at AISTech 2018.

The CTC met 7 May 2018, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Heath Hooker, Nucor-Yamato Steel Co.

  • Vice chair: Mick Foster, Sterling Steel Co. LLC

The CTC met 7–8 February 2018 • Mobile, Ala., USA. The meeting began with a review of the CTC’s AISTech 2018 technical session, which includes five papers. Members in attendance received instructions regarding paper and presentation review, session chair responsibilities and an overview of the AIST Commercialism Policy.
The committee also opened up for nominations to be made for 2018–2019 officers.
Discussion then focused on the 25th AIST Crane Symposium, which will be held on 10–12 June 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. A lengthy discussion was held on the remaining open presentation slots.
The CTC has always prided itself on providing a forum for innovation, new technology and helping members/attendees solve their problems through networking and technology exchange. One concept that may be implemented is to have an open-floor discussion where producer attendees can voice an issue to the audience and to let the other attendees provide feedback to the problem. Another concept is to have multiple presentations be made centered around how Industry 4.0 is impacting crane automation. Presentations would include programming for new automated cranes as well as reprogramming older cranes and the lessons learned through experiences.
The committee then heard from the Crane Innovator of the Year champions, who individually spoke on behalf of their nominees. Mick Foster championed the use of drone technology for crane inspection. He touted the technology as a better, safer, cheaper and faster method of doing crane runway and crane structure inspections. The technology could be applied to other structures in industry as well as for crane inspection. Charlie Totten championed the use of rolling glare shield glass in electric overhead traveling (EOT) cranes. The glass would be used in place of the pull-down shades typically used by crane operators to prevent sun glare or to shield a crane operator’s eyes while being exposed to radiant light from molten metal. Liz McCallum championed the study done by Steel Dynamics on crane cab air quality. The study focused on testing the air inside a crane cab and comparing it to the air outside the cab to ensure that the air filtration systems on the crane cabs are properly functioning for the operator’s safety. The last champion, Russ Walters, spoke about the importance of proper grouting techniques for crane rail and runways. The proper grout for the application must be used to ensure proper compressive strength, impact resistance and service temperature so that it performs properly.
The Crane Innovator of the Year Award will be presented at the 25th AIST Crane Symposium. The meeting concluded with an open discussion on member concerns.
One item discussed was for future revisions of Technical Report No. 6 to include additional metric conversions and to include lighter-weight cranes that are not EOT-type cranes such as jib cranes and small maintenance cranes.
The meeting concluded with a tour hosted by Stuart Driskell of AM/NS Calvert. Jim Dunn, general manager of maintenance, welcomed everyone to the AM/NS facility and gave a description of the facility, its production lines and capabilities. Details were provided on the cranes at the facility, their sizes and any particular attributes to the cranes. AM/NS has been automating many of their cranes to reduce maintenance and to increase operator utilization for other areas of production. Some automated monitoring used for crane maintenance are sensors, bearing thermocouples, motor vibration monitoring, anti-collision and the use of GPS tracking.

Bill Schierenbeck (left), CTC chair, presented Stuart Driskell (right) of AM/NS Calvert with a tour appreciation plaque.
Jim Dunn welcomed the CTC to AM/NS Calvert.

The CTC met 4–5 October 2017, Memphis, Tenn., USA. The primary focus of the meeting was to review the ballot draft responses from the CTC members for the Technical Report No. 6 revisions.
Following the response review, the CTC held nominations for a replacement vice chair, as the former vice chair had retired from the committee and the steel industry. Heath Hooker, Nucor-Yamato Steel Co., was elected by the members to assume the duties of vice chair.
A brief summary and discussion followed on the organization of the crane session for AISTech 2018. Session chairs were also identified.
Charlie Totten provided an update on the 2nd AIST-IAS Crane Symposium, held in Rosario, SF, Argentina, on 23–25 October 2017. Twenty-nine presentations were confirmed for the event with a mix of North American, South American and European technology for electric overhead traveling cranes.
The CTC nominated individuals for the 2018 Crane Innovator of the Year Award. Champions were selected to promote nominees at the winter 2018 CTC meeting.The meeting concluded with an update and discussion on the 25th Annual Crane Symposium, which will be held on 11–12 June 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. Presentation topics are still being sought to fill out the program for this milestone event of the longest-running AIST Technology Training course.
On 5 October, the CTC was hosted by Nucor-Yamato Steel Co. for a tour of its steelmaking and rolling operations.

The CTC toured Nucor-Yamato Steel Co. on 5 October 2017.

The CTC met 8 May 2017, Nashville, Tenn., USA.

The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Bill Schierenbeck, Xtek Inc.

  • Vice chair: James Richmond, Steel of West Virginia Inc.

Bill Schierenbeck (right), CTC vice chair, presented a retirement memento to Bobby Askew (left), CTC chair.

The CTC met 22–23 February 2017, Roanoke, Va., USA.  The AIST Mechanical/Structural Subcommittee met independently on 22 February 2017 to finalize its revisions to AIST Technical Report No. 6 — Specification for Electric Overhead Traveling Cranes for Steel Mill Service.  Three comments in the mechanical section of the report still require review prior to the report being ready for ballot draft. 
The general CTC meeting occurred on 23 February 2017. An open discussion on crane safety lights was held in reference to a recent article entitled, “Innovative Warning Lights for Mobile Equipment and Overhead Cranes,” which was published in the August 2016 issue of Iron & Steel Technology. CTC members noted the increase in use of lasers and colored lights around mobile equipment to increase awareness. A note was made during the discussion that the brighter LED lights being installed on some crane bridges may cause some operators to experience glaring on the crane cab glass.
The CTC reviewed its AISTech 2017 technical session. A comment was made that outstanding authors who have yet to register should be contacted and urged to fulfill their commitment to the conference.
The 24th Annual Crane Symposium program was reviewed and open presentation slots were filled, bringing the event up to 24 individual presentations on crane technology and case studies.
A discussion was also held regarding the 3rd international and 2nd AIST-IAS Crane Symposium, which will be held in Rosario, SF, Argentina, on 22–25 October 2017. There are 27 presentations from Argentina, Belgium and the U.S. scheduled. 
The business portion of the meeting concluded with the champions of the nominees for the Crane Innovator of the Year Award promoting their candidates to receive the award. Four champions spoke for the nominees and a vote was taken of the members in attendance. The Crane Innovator of the Year winner will present their innovation at the 24th Annual Crane Symposium in June.
The meeting concluded with a visit to the Steel Dynamics Inc. – Roanoke Bar Division in Roanoke, Va., USA.

Bill Schierenbeck (right), CTC vice chair, presented a plaque of appreciation to Robert Branigan (left), Steel Dynamics Inc. – Roanoke Bar Division engineering manager, for hosting the CTC’s tour during its meeting on 22 February 2017.
Cranes Technology Committee visiting the Sloss Furnace Museum in Birmingham, Ala., USA.

The CTC met 12 October 2016, Birmingham, AL, USA co-located with Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar. The CTC began its meeting by opening the floor for members to discuss solutions for any crane-related issues amongst the members or to present a recent success story within their facility as they relate to overhead cranes. The goal of the open discussion was to find solutions to problems and provide tips for others.   
The CTC’s AISTech 2017 technical session development was discussed. One session is being planned that will relate to cranes, with five papers in that session. Session chairs were identified and instructions were provided to the session chairs as to the requirements to ensure a successful session. 
The candidates and champions for the 2017 AIST Crane Innovator of the Year were identified. Four technologies were nominated and a member for each technology volunteered to champion the nominee. The champions will present their cases at the next CTC meeting as to why their nominee should be considered for this award.  
An overview of the 24th Annual AIST Crane Symposium program was provided. Fifteen presentations have been scheduled but additional presentations are being sought. Members at the meeting offered an additional 13 potential presentations for the event.  Once the program is finalized, invitations will be sent to the presenters. 
Updates to AIST Technical Report No. 6 — Specification for Electric Overhead Traveling Cranes for Steel Mill Service were discussed. The electrical section revision is complete. There were a number of revisions to the mechanical section that have been submitted by members and the Mechanical/Structural Subcommittee will review those items at its next meeting. 
The meeting concluded with an open discussion period on anti-sway technology and the request by the Instituto Argentino de Siderugia (IAS) to hold a second joint IAS-AIST Crane Symposium in Argentina in 2017. Approximately 15 presentations are being sought from AIST to contribute to the program.
Following the meeting, the CTC visited the historical Sloss Furnace museum.

Bill Schierenbeck (right) presented the CTC service plaque
to Bobby Askew (left).

The CTC met 16 May 2016, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Bobby Askew, Nucor–Hertford County

  • Vice chair: Bill Schierenbeck, Xtek Inc.

The CTC met 2–3 February 2016, Jacksonville, Fla., USA. The CTC was given a tour of Gerdau Long Steel North America Jacksonville Mill on 2 February. Bill Rider, meltshop superintendent, and Jacob Garrison hosted the committee and provided an overview of the facility, its equipment and its production capabilities. The tour consisted of a visit to the scrap yard, the meltshop, the reheat furnace, the rolling mill, and the packaging and shipping area.
On 3 February 2016, the meeting began with the CTC members splitting up into their respective subcommittees (Mechanical/Structural and the Electrical Subcommittees) to finalize any revisions to their sections of the EOT Crane Maintenance, Inspection and Repair Handbook.
A summary report was given by each subcommittee regarding any changes they made to the handbook. A thorough review was then conducted of the entire document to note any inconsistencies, redundancies or irregularities between sections.
Bill Schierenbeck, Charlie Totten and Mark McGinley championed their candidates for the Crane Innovator of the Year Award and presented why they thought the award should be given to their candidate. Following the presentations, members voted on the candidate who they thought best deserved the honor of being an individual recognized for taking the opportunity to improve the efficiency and safety of an electric overhead traveling (EOT) crane. The winner will receive their award at the 23rd Annual Crane Symposium, which will be held on 21–23 June 2016, Indianapolis, Ind., USA.
The current status of the Crane Symposium program was reviewed. A number of presenters have yet to confirm their participation. If any presentations cancel, substitutes will be identified.
Ken Lewis was recognized for his 30 years of continual service to the AIST Cranes Technology Committee and its predecessor, the AISE Subcommittee No. 6 on Electric Overhead Traveling Cranes. Lewis is retiring and was presented with a commemorative gift for his years of service.

1. Bobby Askew (right), CTC chair, presented Bill Rider (left) with a plaque of appreciation for hosting the CTC’s tour of Gerdau Long Steel North America Jacksonville Mill. 2. Bobby Askew (right) recognized Ken Lewis (left) for his longtime service to the CTC. 3. The CTC toured Gerdau Long Steel North America Jacksonville Mill on 2 February 2016.