Lifting bridge system for an autoclave loading system

The video shows how easy it is for one person to lower the bridge, and then to raise it again.
Autoclave lifting bridge

The bridge in the raised position allowing the autoclave door to be closed

Lifting bridge

Face-on view of the raised bridge

Lifting bridge open

Our design modelĀ of raised bridge allowing the autoclave door to be closed

Closed lifting bridge

Our design modelĀ of lowered bridge allowing transport access

The requirement for this project was to provide a means of removing a bridge section from a transport system to provide access.

A pair of elevated railways lines are used to transport product into an autoclave for processing. After loading, the autoclave door needs to be closed, so it becomes necessary to remove a section of the track to allow this to happen.

Previously this was achieved simply by lifting the heavy section out with a fork lift truck. However, this was deemed to be too slow and hazardous. An alternate solution was needed which did not rely on power assistance.

The design also needed to allow for the restricted headroom at the intended location. No standard system was available which satisfied these requirements so our client, Autoclaves Group Ltd, asked if we could provide a solution.

The design uses the self- weight of the bridge section together with appropriately sized and positioned gas struts to achieve this. The final stage of operation being minimal effort by the user, to pull a lever into its locked position.