Hermle sent three C 42 U, five-axis machining centres with automation capability to the USA

An Antonov AN-124 transport aircraft provided the means

  • Ein Transportflugzeug wird mit HERMLE Bearbeitungszentren beladen
  • Ein Einblick in das Transportflugzeug Antonov
  • Ein Transportflugzeug wird mit HERMLE Bearbeitungszentren beladen
  • Ein HERMLE Mitarbeiter bedient die C 42 U

Hermle machining centres make for intelligent fabrication of metal components. They are used in high-end sectors such as aerospace, medical technology, mechanical and precision engineering, to name just a few. The machines, that themselves achieve tolerances below 10 µm for milling and turning (a human hair has a diameter of around 70 µm), must also be given precision treatment when they are transported. So most Hermle machines are transported either by means of vehicles with air suspension or by sea. Sometimes, though, time is of the essence and the machines must be moved very quickly.

So on October 11, 2019, three C 42 U dynamic, five-axis machining centres, each equipped with an HS flex handling system, were transported from Stuttgart Airport to Arizona using an Antonov AN-124 – one of the world's largest cargo aircraft. The machines, each weighing around 14 t and measuring 3.50 x 3.50 x 4.50 m plus the associated HS flex handling system weighing in at another 8 t each together with ancillary equipment – altogether around 80 tonnes – were taken to the airport in six lorries by the specialist firm Allgaier Verpackung based in Neu-Ulm, and then properly loaded into the hold of the Antonov and secured. The whole procedure took place in an atmosphere of calm and concentration – there is no room for error here. This transport also represented a highlight for Stuttgart Airport, as it is relatively rare for an Antonov AN-124 to take off there. 

It took off for the USA punctually at 12 noon. After stopping for fuel in Iceland at Keflavík Airport and then in Montreal, the Antonov delivered the precious freight in Arizona. In two weeks' time, the three machines will already be producing their first parts at our end customer's premises – fully automatically.

Facts about the Antonov AN-124

Crew                                      6

Length                                   69.10 m

Wingspan                              73.30 m

Wing area                              628.00 m2

Height                                    20.78 m

Hold (LxWxH)                        36.50 x 6.40 x 4.40 m

Max. payload                         120 t (civilian version)

Range with freight                 4,800 km with 120 t payload
                                                12,000 km with 40 t payload

The Antonov AN-124's tubular hold can be accessed by raising either the rear section or the aircraft's nose.

For more information:

Maschinenfabrik Berthold Hermle AG, Udo Hipp , Marketing Director

T 07426 95 6238, E-Mail: udo.hipp@hermle.de 

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