The world of heavy lifting is more complex and technically demanding than ever. Increasing cost pressure may compromise safety and reliability of applied lifting accessories, such as slings. By means of a fit-for-purpose approach a more economically viable solution can be provided without compromises. A way to work smarter with Dyneema®.
If a sling is not strong enough, it could fail during its use – but using a sling that is stronger than necessary, while potentially protecting the user from unexpected loads, misuse, and degradation, may not be safer or more cost-effective. Users must consider is it ‘fit-for-purpose’, and is this smarter working?
A 5:1 design factor is the most commonly selected value in the US, and 7:1 design factor in the EU, for slings in general-purpose lifting operations. For ‘engineered’ lifting operations, such as (subsea) lifting in offshore environments, the factor can be as low as 3.38.
The more designers/engineers know about the potential usage of a sling and the constraints on the conditions of its use, like in ‘engineered’ lifting operations, the better they can build these needs into the slings supplied and used. With better understanding, a design factor can be effectively lowered with focus on the slings’ purpose and service, and without compromising safety and reliability.
Functional and operational requirements and intended use provide relevant input for the design, manufacturing, testing and use of slings in ‘engineered’ lifting operations. So, it is not only about reaching a certain initial strength and/or proof load value.
This ‘fit-for-purpose’ approach, challenges the traditional ‘design factor’ method and implies more than just verifying the minimum breaking strength and/or the proof loading characteristics. This is far too often the only ‘verification’ used in the market today prior to handing over slings to the user.
NOTE: A ‘verification’ is not the same as ‘certification’, even though documents issued by certification authorities describing this verification is called a ‘Certificate’. Verification is solely focused on products’ properties based on engineering, manufacturing and integration of components prior to handing-over to the user. Certification focuses on these aspects as well as the application, operation and maintenance in the usage phase. So, certification is ‘service life’ focused. There is not just one way to certify a solution!
An example of a ‘fit-for-purpose’ approach, witnessed and certified by DNV GL, was implemented by Lankhorst Ropes. Results of a program, evaluating high- performance synthetic fiber rope made with Dyneema® SK78 (a DNV GL certified yarn grade) under realistic and real-life testing conditions, were presented during the recent 24th International Offshore Crane & Lifting Conference in Stavanger.
Based on available evidence, Dyneema® SK78-based slings can be designed, and used, with design factors as low as 2.79 (!). NOT by only verifying a proof load and/or break load! So, working smarter, while users do not need to compromise on safety or reliability and reducing their costs per sling significantly.
The industry is now embracing a transformation in lightweight lifting solutions. The exceptional strength-to-weight ratio of synthetic solutions built with Dyneema® significantly reduce the weight and size of equipment, and the corresponding effort required by crews. Proven synthetic lifting equipment made with Dyneema® is up to eight times lighter than steel for the same strength. In this age of intense competition and innovation in heavy lifting, it pays to work smarter.
At DSM – the innovators and manufacturers of Dyneema® fiber – we’re supporting the industry by finding smarter ways to work. Our lightweight synthetic solutions are an alternative to more traditional materials, providing ‘fit-for-purpose’ solutions to enable lifts ranging from small to the world’s largest, most complex, and most ambitious loads. DSM’s knowledge and understanding, ranging from raw materials to applications, its ABS, BV and DNV GL certified yarn grades, its DNV GL technology qualified (creep) performance model, supportive services, and rigorous testing, are there supporting to work smarter with Dyneema®.
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