Over the course of their lifetime these link chains take some punishment and are exposed to violent forces and impacts such as torsion, stretch, bending over sharp edges, shock load, abrasion and corrosion.
Dyneema fibers can deal with these violent forces - particularly the DM20 fiber grade - available through the Dyneema Max Technology platform. Originally developed for the long-term mooring of oil rigs, this fiber has some outstanding new properties, we discovered – notably its ability to resist bending, tension, abrasion and torsion. In fact, properties of DM20 grade enable the synthetic chain to match or to beat the lifetime endurance of steel link chains.
Smart use of DSM’s different scientific competences and cohesive project management within our organization was key in developing this solution.
The first step was to create a novel new molecule with not only creep-inhibiting properties, but extended mechanical lifetime performance via specific molecular-side chains (or via specific polymer design); next they needed to be synthesized on a large scale to develop the optimal conditions for being spun into fibers.
This in turn required backward and forward integration along the production chain - literally, making use of our competences including Materials Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Macromolecular Sciences, Engineering Sciences and Analytical Sciences.