Deep under the sea
Our customer is a global player that ‘shapes both the land and the sea’. To that end, this company has a fleet of vessels which are used to maintain maritime access- and harbour channels, build ports, seafronts, artificial islands and connections between installations out at sea and the shore. Cables are laid, to that end, using specially-equipped vessels.
Laying cables at sea requires the right expertise and durable materials. Laying the cable unscathed, at the right tension and in the right spot places extreme demands on both men and machine.
To keep the cable at the right tension, the contractor uses a cable tensioner. This consists of two caterpillar cranes, between which the cable is tightly clenched. To grip the cable tightly, without damaging it, special tensile blocks are mounted on the cranes. These tractive blocks are composed of a metal carrier with a polyurethane protective coating.
The blocks are subjected to high forces, firstly the pressure force to clench the cable and, secondly, the tensile force to keep the cable at the right tension. Neither of which should damage the cable.
Furthermore, due to the maritime climate, the ambient conditions are aggressive and high demands are placed on the bond between the metal carrier and the polyurethane.
Our customer had to contend with tractive blocks that, after too short a deployment time, disengaged from the carrier.
Drawing on its expertise, Vulkoprin offered a total solution. With Printhane-B™ 85, we proposed a polyurethane which – for this application – offers the ideal compromise between hardness/rigidity and grip. This ensures a tight grip on the cable, without damaging it. The bonding process is automated, thus eliminating possible contamination or handling errors by operators. The newly designed metal carrier also provides extra mechanical anchoring.
As a total provider with in-house design and engineering, die-making, metalworking and polyurethane production, Vulkoprin has convinced the customer and the project was completed in a very short time.