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Donges SteelTec is once again involved in training international welding specialists this year.

Darmstadt, 19.02.2024. Donges has been building steel bridges and innovative steel structures for 150 years. Each structure is unique and a small masterpiece. To ensure that the high quality requirements for steel structures can continue to be met in the future, well-trained specialists are needed. With this in mind, Donges SteelTec not only trains construction mechanics and system planners in its own company in Darmstadt, but is also involved in training courses at the Hessen Metal College in Oberursel.

Dipl.-Ing. Andreas Schade, head of quality management/assurance and welding engineer at Donges SteelTec, once again took on part of the theoretical training for the “International Welding Specialist” course at the Hessen Metal College. The practical knowledge of the course participants was deepened during an excursion to Darmstadt in the production halls of Donges SteelTec GmbH.

We congratulate the 18 participants on passing their exams and wish them every success in their future careers.

Sophisticated assembly concept – Donges SteelTec scores with many years of experience and expertise in bridge construction

The consortium consisting of Adam Hörnig GmbH and Donges SteelTec GmbH was commissioned by the federal motorway authority Autobahn GmbH with the replacement construction of the Main bridge near Mainflingen. Our company’s expertise and many years of experience in the field of bridge assembly was a particularly important aspect in the successful acquisition of the contract.

The old Main bridge at Mainflingen on the BAB 45 motorway is being replaced by an elegant bridge with a tensioned chord structure.

At the location of the bridge, the River Main forms the state border between Mainhausen in Hesse and Kleinostheim in Bavaria. A slender steel composite construction and the low overall height of the bridging structure ensure that the replacement structure blends harmoniously into the varied river landscape.

The two superstructures have a total length of 450 metres. The 260 m long river bridge is designed as a three-span continuous girder in pure steel construction for the main supporting girders in the longitudinal direction of the bridge and in composite steel construction for the cross girders and carriageway slab structure. The supporting structure consists of a steel trough with box-shaped longitudinal girders and is spanned by chords, which are also box-shaped. The tension chord construction allows a slender centre span of 135.00 m above the river Main with two equal side spans of 62.50 m each. The slenderness in the centre of the span is approx. L/45. The tension chords are supported by approx. 15.00 m high pylons.

The displacement of the pylon locations compared to the existing structure results in a symmetrical situation along the Main axis.

The installation specialists from Donges SteelTec face a particular challenge. Due to the one-piece cross-section of the existing bridge, it is not possible to demolish half of it. The first superstructure (RiFa Gießen) of the A45 over the Main must therefore be built in a lateral position and later shifted crosswise over a length of 450 metres. The assembly of the steel structure is just as challenging. This will be constructed at the final position above the foreland on both sides of the Main on skidways and shifted longitudinally over the Main. The approx. 500 tonne centre section is then floated in over the Main, lifted and welded.

The entire construction project will last until 2031 and is an important milestone in the redevelopment of the German bridge landscape.

Donges SteelTec trainees visit the PTS and RTW construction sites in Frankfurt

“We offer our apprentices an exciting, comprehensive and practical training as a solid basis for the start of their professional life” with this motto Donges SteelTec advertises apprenticeships to young people.

Now the practical relevance was established for the prospective technical system planners and construction mechanics. Together with their training supervisors, the 15 technical and industrial apprentices of Donges SteelTec first visited the new Passenger Transport System (PTS) station under construction at Frankfurt Airport and then the RTW construction site (Regional-Tangente-West) near Frankfurt Stadium. Donges SteelTec has been commissioned with the manufacture, delivery and assembly of the complex steel structures for both construction projects.

The two Donges site managers proudly presented the current assembly status of the projects, pointed out the technically demanding assembly steps to the young colleagues and explained the special working situation on a construction site. With great interest and impressed by the huge steel constructions that characterise both the PTS station and the new bar arch bridge of the western regional tangent, the trainees absorbed the many practical information during their tour of the construction sites.

Donges SteelTec promotes young scientists

Darmstadt, 19.10.2023. It pays to promote young scientists: Darmstadt-based Donges SteelTec GmbH has now awarded a total of 6,000 euros in prize money to four students at Darmstadt Technical University. This is the 11th time that the Donges sponsorship award has recognised outstanding bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral theses in the field of steel construction at TUDa.

The award fulfils several objectives for Donges SteelTec. “On the one hand, this is how we document our solidarity with the Technical University of Darmstadt, which is based on many years of scientific and personal cooperation,” explains Donges SteelTec Managing Director Dr Wolf Cornelius. On the other hand, as one of the leading German steel construction companies, Donges SteelTec is committed to thinking beyond the day and acting sustainably. “And this also includes promoting young technical talent, which is essential for the success of our economy in global competition.”

The jury, including Professors Lange and Vormwald from the Institute for Steel Construction and Mechanics of Materials at TU Darmstadt, sifted through numerous dissertations, bachelor’s and master’s theses and finally selected four young academics, whose work is of outstanding importance in the field of steel construction. The works awarded in two senses deal with the ecological-economic evaluation of sandwich elements, “3-D printing with steel: additive manufacturing of steel columns, the material behaviour of butt welded joints and the load-bearing behaviour of fillet welded joints under longitudinal shear. All papers have experimental as well as theoretical or numerical parts, which mutually confirm the results found.They all lead to findings on the basis of which structural components in steel construction can be designed more economically; thus an essential evaluation criterion for the submission was fulfilled.The four young engineers Alina Behrendt, Niklas Brand, Joachim Schliemann and Anusikah Sivakadadcham were honoured at the ceremony on 19 October 2023 in the guest house of the TU Darmstadt.

In his presentation of the company, Stephan Langer, bridge construction manager at Donges SteelTec, made special mention of the company’s involvement in the construction of the new stadium for the “Lilien” and thus led over to the evening’s keynote speaker, Rüdiger Fritsch. In his rousing speech, the president of SV Darmstadt 1898 provided insights into the business enterprise “football”.

At the subsequent get-together, around 100 guests, including many students from the Department of Civil Engineering at the TUD as well as business partners and employees of Donges SteelTec GmbH, found time to exchange ideas and network.

The next Donges Award ceremony will take place in two years’ time.

A look behind the scenes of the project!

The new Passenger Transport System (PTS) station will connect Terminal 3 of Frankfurt Airport, which is currently under construction, with the existing passenger facilities, the regional and long-distance railway station in the north and the Sheraton Hotel.

Donges SteelTec has been commissioned with the manufacture, delivery and assembly of the complex steel structure of the PTS station. The fabrication and assembly of the conical round supports and the cast nodes represent a special challenge here. The assembly work of module 1 is almost completed. The entire construction project will be completed by the end of 2023. The following photos give an impression of the huge steel construction before the final coating.


Donges SteelTec manufactures and assembles the steel structures for nine railway bridges

In the course of the flood disaster in July 2021, large parts of the Deutsche Bahn rail network in the Ahr valley were destroyed. Now, bridges and railway embankments along the route are to be rebuilt in a highly water-resistant manner. The main focus is on the bridges. The former round arch bridges are to be given a slimmer construction during the reconstruction in order to offer the (flood) water as little surface of attack as possible.

Donges SteelTec has been commissioned to manufacture, deliver and assemble the steel structures (4300 t) for nine steel trough bridges. The contract also includes workshop and assembly planning as well as all corrosion protection services, bearings, transition structure and railings.

We are pleased to be able to contribute to the reconstruction of the Ahr valley and are convinced that the decision to build the new bridges sustainably in steel construction is an additional measure to increase resilience against possible future flood events.


Donges pushes bridge Overfly over Nuremberg East interchange

The bridge structure 3-1 Overfly transfers an exit of the motorway A6 Rifa Amberg over the motorway junction Nuremberg East and thus reconnects the motorway A6 to the motorway A9. The new construction will improve the performance of the Nuremberg East junction.

The bridge construction is a combination of continuous girder and cable-stayed bridge and can therefore be classified as an extradosed bridge. Donges SteelTec is constructing the complete bridge in the so-called cycle basement in 6 sections. After assembly, each section is hydraulically shifted longitudinally over the abutment and the concrete piers. The next section is then connected to the displaced end of the previous section until the opposite abutment is reached.

The steel composite structure, 588 m long in total, impressively spans the 115 m span with a total of 5 pairs of pylons. Up to 55 stranded cables form the cables of the stay cables. A total of approx. 8,600 tons of steel will be used for the 588 m long bridge.

The displacement of the bridge, including the already assembled pylons and cables, is carried out in 6 cycles with the maximum displacement distances of 115 m. A 50 m long cantilever bridges the free spans during shifting and compensates for the deflections of the bridge due to its own weight when it runs onto the next pier. Shifting takes two days per cycle. It takes place on special shifting rockers and is carried out with the help of greased shifting plates that allow the steel construction to slide forward successively. In this way, the shifting load that the hydraulic presses have to apply can be reduced to a maximum of 10 % of the bridge weight.

On 22.06.2023 the 3rd shifting cycle was successfully completed, the next components of the 4th cycle are currently being assembled. The steel construction work will continue until 2024.


Donges SteelTec builds bar arch bridge for the Regionaltangente West (RTW) in Frankfurt am Main

An impressive bar arch bridge is currently being built at the Frankfurt Stadion S-Bahn station and thus right in front of the Waldstadion Frankfurt. The bridge structure carries the new RTW line over the existing Deutsche Bahn AG track system.

The superstructure of the bar arch bridge with a span of approx. 113 m is being built in steel construction and is divided into two arch levels consisting of stiffening girders, arches and hangers, as well as an orthotropic carriageway and walkways with cable ducts on both sides.

Design, fabrication and corrosion protection of the steel components were carried out at the Donges SteelTec GmbH plant in Darmstadt.

Parallel to the fabrication, the individual foundations were produced on the construction site and the auxiliary scaffolding was prepared for the erection. The steel structures were delivered by heavy-duty transporters to the pre-assembly site, where a mobile crane placed the components directly into the assembly position. Due to the very tight space conditions on the construction site, the pre-assembly began in the eastern area of the assembly area. Here, the first third of the superstructure with axis 10 was assembled in a horizontal position and then moved along the assembly area in a westerly direction using an SPMT (Self-Propelled Modular Transporter) so that the other steel sections could then be added.  Welding and corrosion protection work is currently underway on the site until autumn 2023.

For the actual insertion over the DB tracks in May 2024, the superstructure will be stacked in the storage axles to shunting height, transferred to SPMT and aligned in the shunting position. During a 24-hour break in rail traffic, the superstructure will be pushed over the track field with maximum cantilever and taken over on the opposite side by a lattice boom crawler crane.

We are very pleased to be able to carry out this exciting project close to home.


Donges SteelTec takes part in the “Jugend schweißt” competition of the DVS Association.

Darmstadt, 02.06.2023. In the preliminary round of the “Jugend schweißt” competition, the trainees of Donges SteelTec GmbH achieved first and third places in the MAG and E-Hand processes. With torch in hand, they were able to demonstrate their manual skills in welding steel sheets. The young Donges welders were rewarded with valuable non-cash prizes and a cash gift. In addition, welding test certificates were issued for the welded fillet welds.

For the first-place winners, it is now on to the next round of the competition at state level in Kassel, and if the welds are perfectly set, then to the national competition in Essen in September. We are already keeping our fingers crossed!

Marco Arndt, responsible for welding training at Donges SteelTec, is proud of the young talent and sees their successful performance as confirmation of the good quality of training at Donges SteelTec.


Donges SteelTec supports pupils in their career orientation

The practical experience and orientation in the working world of a company is very important for young people on their way to career planning. Against this background, Donges SteelTec again gave boys and girls the opportunity to get to know the world of heavy steel construction on Girls’ & Boys’ Day this year. Nine young people gained their first insights in our technical office, where designers and structural engineers work out the basics for steel structures. After a tour through the individual departments of the company administration, they were finally able to marvel at the heavy, welded steel components for the bridge and building projects in the factory halls.

Donges SteelTec is a training company for construction mechanics and technical system planners. Perhaps the Girls’ and Boys’ Day could contribute to sparking an enthusiasm for building with steel among the young people.