Air Cushion Benefits


Air Cushion Benefits

Air cushions enable flexible transport systems for all industries

The invention of the wheel was a revolutionary development. Nevertheless, the wheels of any vehicle touch the ground, which brings disadvantages such as frictional resistance, complex designs with moving parts, wear and tear, etc.

Air cushion technology, though, simply eliminates these disadvantages. The wheels are replaced by air cushions, allowing even heavy loads – which could scarcely be transported using conventional methods – to float effortlessly and completely without vibration on a film of air above the ground. The friction of coefficient is reduced to 0.001, which means, for instance, that a force of only 10 N is required to move a load of 1,000 kg. That in turn means that a single person is able to move a load weighing tons in all directions – forwards, backwards, sideways – or turn it around its own axis.

The employment of air cushion technology offers considerable advantages even in cases where the use of conventional means of transport such as tractors, forklift trucks, cranes, mechanical turntables and assembly lines is not excluded.


These benefits enable:

  1. Unconventional factory planning and hall layouts with high economic effects, e.g. in bus and rail vehicle construction and in paint production, such as a reduction of up to 50% in the total investment cost for a newbuild.
  2. The realisation of flexible factories, as there is no further need for fixed installations such as rails, conveyor belts, traversers, cranes or overhead conveyors. These flexible factories can then be adapted to the changing needs of customers in a very short space of time.
  3. New organisational methods, such as flexible assembly cells (group work) or several stations supervised by a single foreman, away from Taylorism towards stationary assembly and parallelism of work.

This allows throughput times to be slashed drastically and productivity to be increased. To give an example, in rail vehicle construction a productivity increase of 20% for passenger carriages, 30% for trams and 40% for urban railway carriages was achieved in the final assembly stage.

Benefits at a glance:

  1. Allows flexible transport solutions and accelerates production processes
  2. Modular design means almost unlimited loads
  3. Full freedom of movement and high positioning precision thanks to frictionless floating technology
  4. Energy saving, quiet, environmentally friendly
  5. Flat, compact design
  6. Versatile (modules, transporters, running gears, bearings, …)
  7. User and maintenance friendly (one-man operation)
  8. Low investment and operating costs compared with conventional solutions
  9. Can replace or complement existing crane installations
  10. Can be used in all areas (even explosion protected zones and clean rooms)
  11. Devices are very reliable and have little wear
  12. Low floor loads, wide load distribution
  13. Works on all smooth, level and airtight floors