Journal of Failure Analysis and Prevention

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 76–86 | Cite as

Strength Analysis and Optimal Design for Main Girder of Double-Trolley Overhead Traveling Crane Using Finite Element Method

  • P. F. Liu
  • L. J. Xing
  • Y. L. Liu
  • J. Y. Zheng
Technical Article---Peer-Reviewed


As special equipment for material hoisting and carrying, the double-trolley overhead traveling crane develops rapidly in the field of mechanical engineering. In order to improve the safety, reliability, and economy, the lightweight design for the crane is crucial, which mainly contains two important fundamental works: one is the prediction of the limit load-bearing ability and the other one is the optimization. In this paper, a three-dimensional parametric finite element model is established and the limit load-bearing ability of the main girder of a true crane is predicted using the arc-length algorithm and nonlinear stabilization algorithm, respectively. Finite element analysis indicates the existing double-trolley overhead traveling crane shows a large strength allowance. The subsequent optimal design which aims to achieve a perfect match between the mechanical performance and weight is conducted based on the strength analysis. Specially, the software platform of optimal design for double-trolley overhead traveling crane is developed to reach the integrated parametric design interactively. The proposed numerical methods which are highlighted by an optimal design platform implement the lightweight design conception efficiently. By numerical analysis, this research is demonstrated to provide theoretical and technical support for promoting the lightweight design and safety evaluation of cranes.


Double-trolley overhead traveling crane Main girder Strength analysis Optimal design Software platform 



Length of main girder


Height of I-steel


I-steel leg width


I-steel leg average thickness


I-steel waist thickness


Height of lower cover plate in slant section


Distance from the bottom of I-steel to lower cover plate


Height of web plate


Seam length


Upper cover plate width


Width of lower cover plate on horizontal section


Web plate thickness


Lower cover plate thickness


Upper cover plate thickness


Stiffened plate thickness


Concentrated load


Girder deadweight


Stiffness matrices


Load factor


Displacement matrices


Force matrices


Displacement increment


Arc-length radius


Damping matrices


Allowable stress


Allowable deflection


Objective function

\( x_{i}^{\text{L}} \) and \( x_{i}^{\text{U}} \)

Lower and upper bounds of design variables

σmax and εmax

Maximum stress and deflection


Weight of main girder


Reference value of objective function


Response surface parameter

gi, hi, and wi

State variables

X, G, H, and W

Penalty functions



This research is supported by the project “Safety and energy-conservation optimal design and platform development of double-trolley overhead traveling crane” cooperated with Hangzhou Special Equipment Inspection Institute, China.


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Copyright information

© ASM International 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. F. Liu
    • 1
  • L. J. Xing
    • 1
  • Y. L. Liu
    • 2
  • J. Y. Zheng
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Process EquipmentZhejiang UniversityHangzhouChina
  2. 2.Hangzhou Special Equipment Inspection InstituteHangzhouChina

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