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Peak performance

TÜV SÜD pitching in on the highest construction site in Germany

A passionate mountain climber, TÜV SÜD’s Otto Regauer is clearly not prone to a fear of heights.
Photo: TÜV SÜD

Acrobatic skills are required to mix concrete at the end of the crane boom, which is then poured into forms to build the new Eibsee cable car system.
Photo: TÜV SÜD

The crane whose structural stability and safety settings are being inspected by TÜV SÜD´s Otto Regauer is higher than Germany’s tallest summit.
Photo: TÜV SÜD

With temperatures down to minus 35 degrees Celsius in the winter, extreme ice buildup on construction cranes can occur, bringing associated hazards with it.
Photo: TÜV SÜD

TÜV SÜD expert Otto Regauer is a valued consultant on construction sites for questions regarding safety settings on the crane.
Photo: TÜV SÜD

Nowadays, a crane towers over the summit cross atop the Zugspitze mountain. A new mountain station is being built for the Eibsee cable car, which after 2018, will transport visitors with more speed and comfort up to Germany’s highest mountain. Otto Regauer of TÜV SÜD braced dizzying heights to test the crane’s stability and safety settings.

Germany is currently setting a new record: The highest point in the country is exactly 13 meters taller – but only temporarily. Currently, a Liebherr Flat-Top Crane 150 EC-B 6 Litronic soars above the 2,962 meter-high summit. The crane was erected in June 2015 to build the mountain station of the new Eibsee cable car system.

A helicopter delivered the top-slewing crane to its exposed location. Assembly and installation went smoothly under the auspice of Liebherr, the Bayerische Zugspitzbahn Bergbahn AG and the Swiss airline Heliswiss. The crane’s jib is an impressive 50 meters long, with a hook height of 18.6 meters. The crane was specially equipped to withstand wind speeds of up to 280 kilometeres per hour and winter temperatures of minus 35 degrees Celsius.

Germany’s highest construction site is an extreme workplace for TÜV SÜD’s Otto Regauer. To test the crane’s stability and safety settings after installation, he had to climb out onto the jib while it was carrying a test load of 3.5 tons. The job description requires applicants without vertigo. But this isn't a problem for Regauer, who is not afraid of heights. In fact, he is an avid mountain climber.

Otto Regauer is doing his part so that starting in 2018, the Eibsee cable car can transport visitors from the middle station to the Zugspitze’s peak. Two new records will be achieved in the process: The cable car will have the world’s tallest steel pylon at 127 meters in height. And with 3,207 meters separating the pylon from the mountain station, no other cable car in the world spans a greater distance than this one.

The new modern Eibesee cable car system will be able to transport twice as many people per hour as the old one. The cost of the new system is estimated at 50 million euros.

TÜV SÜD´s role in the Zupspitze project is something spectacular. But inspecting cranes and providing the required declarations of conformity prior to commissioning, that is all in a day’s work for TÜV SÜD, a reliable partner to all manufacturers, installers, users and operators of lifting equipment and cranes. And down on the ground, too.