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The Port of Vancouver, one of the major ports on the Pacific Coast, has announced that the largest mobile harbor crane in North America - the LHM 500S - is officially in service.

The crane is the newest model from Austrian crane manufacturer Liebherr. It is capable of hoisting 140 metric tons up to a 60-foot outreach, and 100 metric tons at a 100-foot outreach. It weighs close to 500 tons, and with 80 wheels on 20 axle sets, it can turn in any direction, the port says.

"This heavy lift crane brings a whole new dimension for cargo handling in the Columbia River, positioning Vancouver as a premier project cargo port," says Larry Paulson, port executive director. "We already handled several large wind turbine projects, and this additional capability will open up new markets for the region to handle heavy or oversize equipment, generators and components for large-scale projects in the energy and transportation industries."

Powered by a 12-cylinder MAN diesel engine, the LHM500S is biodiesel-compatible, which is compliant with the port's policy to use alternative fuels.

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