Dynamics of container cranes: three-dimensional modeling, full-scale experiments, and identification

A. Arena, A. Casalotti, W. Lacarbonara, M.P. Cartmell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


A three-dimensional modeling of container cranes subject to wind loads is presented together with full-scale experimental tests, system identification and model validation. The container is modeled as a rigid body elastically suspended from the trolley running along rails on top of the crane boom and the girder. Differences are discussed with respect to a constrained model, in which the cables are unstretchable. Experimental investigations are carried out on a full-scale container crane and the modal characteristics together with the damping coefficient are identified as a function of the container height. Moreover, the nonlinearities induced by large-amplitude oscillations involving some of the modes are highlighted both in the context of numerical simulations and experimental tests. Time integration is carried out to validate the mechanical model by comparing its predictions with the experimental results. Typical working maneuvers together with the effects of wind-induced loads are taken into account to study the three-dimensional crane response.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-21
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Mechanical Sciences
Early online date13 Jan 2015
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2015


  • container cranes
  • hoisting cables elasticity
  • crane damping identification

Cite this