In response to a concerning increase in operational incidents with articulated shiplift platforms, Syncrolift, a leading expert in ship lifting systems, introduces Calypso™ - an advanced upgrade service designed to redefine safety standards in shipyard operations. Calypso™ transforms traditional articulated platforms into rigid structures, mitigating the risks associated with wire rope breakages. This groundbreaking solution ensures that even in the unlikely event of a wire rope failure, the platform structure absorbs the load, preventing collapses and safeguarding shipyard personnel. Key Benefits of Calypso™: Enhanced Safety: The upgrade to Calypso™ significantly reduces the risk of platform collapses, providing a safer working environment. Reduced Daily Costs: Experience operational efficiency with features like reduced power consumption, increased nominal lifting capacity, and lower-cost electric motors. Extended System Life: Calypso™ increases component life, contributing to the overall longevity of the shiplift system. Smart Lifting Technology: Embrace automation with features like automated blocking, in-haul systems, and remote analysis for efficient problem-solving. Syncrolift offers a free Calypso safety consultation for shiplift operators, assessing the safety of older articulated platforms and recommending changes to enhance safety and functionality. The upgrade service is available for shiplifts with more than four hoists, ensuring a comprehensive solution tailored to each system. Make the switch to Calypso™ and secure the future of your shipyard operations. Syncrolift is committed to providing cutting-edge solutions that prioritize safety and efficiency. Upgrade to Calypso™ today and experience a new era of articulated platform reliability. For further information or to schedule a consultation, contact Syncrolift. Safety is our priority, and Calypso™ is poised to revolutionize safety standards in shipyard operations.
MIAMI, Nov. 29, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- There has been a significant growth of operational incidents on articulated shiplift platforms in recent years. Wire rope breaks have been the main factor.
When the Syncrolift system for drydocking was first developed in 1957, it relied on synchronous reluctance motors to lift at uniform speed. The platform design, featuring a series of unconnected beams, was constrained by that era's inadequate control system technology. Rudimentary coding, load-measuring sensors, torque measurement, encoders, and variable frequency drives did not exist back then – limiting technical choice.
The stiffness of the structure led to situations where the load and positioning of each platform section could not be accurately monitored. Sacrificing the natural ductility and bending strength of the steel structure (by articulation), limited the system's ability to distribute loads across different sections, making it vulnerable to peak loads.
By contrast, today's rigid or hybrid structures, unlike hinged/articulated ones, flex under load. This characteristic, along with the extension of loaded wire ropes, allows for more effective load distribution, just like your car's suspension. It is not surprising therefore an articulated platform needs 50% more capacity to achieve the same safety/nominal lifting capacity.
The difference between rigid/hybrid and articulated designs becomes even more evident with difficult hull forms, such as those with interrupted keel blocks, large overhangs, or abnormal peak loads. However, the paramount advantage of the rigid/hybrid platform is still its enhanced safety.
Since its start in 1957, 283 installations have been ordered and we have lifted more than 3 million ships - a testament to the concept of lifting ships out of the water. In 2023 Syncrolift is considered the safest and most productive way to launch new ships and lift those in service. Even nuclear-powered submarines are lifted today with live reactors.
However, not all 283 installations are still in service – in fact, 89 (over 30%) of them are currently inactive.
Why? There are several reasons:
- Lack of maintenance - any mechanical device needs maintenance, or it will fail.
- The original Syncrolift was a package of constituent products with no overall design control.
- The original Syncrolift had no means of load indication, and many were often overloaded.
- The original Syncrolift had an extremely high starting current and was expensive to run.
- Some owners went out of business due to factors not necessarily related to the product.
In 67 years, some serious limitations of the original concept have been revealed which is hardly surprising, given that significant changes have occurred in shipbuilding technology. Many of those factors that made the original Syncrolift such a success have been overtaken by more effective designs and modern proven technology.
Again, safety must be paramount in the shipbuilding industry and should always come first. Many shiplifts have remained in service without incident after Lloyds Register introduced the Code for Lifting Appliances in a Marine Environment during the '80s with that in mind. However, the safety of life and limb cannot be solely dependent on legacy engineering or the Maintenance Manager.
In recent years we have become aware of the growth of operational incidents occurring with articulated platforms. Wire Rope breakage has been the main factor in older lifts and the fact that those older platforms are articulated has become critical. If one wire rope breaks on an articulated platform it can cause platform sections to tip or fall. When that happens, the wire ropes in adjacent hoists go out of alignment, and the sheave edges can abrade those ropes too. In the worst case, the lift collapses and drops its load. This is not acceptable. As the OEM we have become increasingly concerned about this growth of articulated incidents to the point we think shiplift owners should be making changes for the safety of ships in the yard, and their personnel. Some prudent articulated shiplift owners have already secured platform beams with safety wires, and/or changed their articulated platforms to a rigid configuration. They are now benefiting from the upgrade to 2020's technology. Our modern platform is a rigid structure, and in unlikely wire rope breakage case due to lack of maintenance or such circumstances, the platform structure absorbs the extra load until replacement of the wire can be made or continue the operation to reduce the load.
Note - we do not endorse other lifting media like chain as a means of ensuring correct design and functionality. Wire rope still remains the most suitable lifting medium for shiplifts, considering factors such as safety, redundancy, environmental impact, maintenance costs, downtime, risk assessment, smooth operation, component fatigue life, lack of proper monitoring, etc.
Why put your whole shipyard at risk when we can guarantee no platform structure will drop in the water if you change your articulated lift to a rigid configuration with Calypso?
For all the above reasons, and because this is so important, Syncrolift is today offering our "Calypso™" upgrade service so older shiplifts can be upgraded to a safer configuration and reduce the daily costs of operation.
As the OEM for all 283 Syncrolift installations, our free Calypso safety consultation will evaluate the safety of your older articulated Syncrolift on any installation with more than 4 hoists. Even 4-hoist units can benefit from modern technology. Many of the simple changes we will likely recommend can be undertaken by your own shipbuilding personnel.
Our recommended changes can range from simply upgrading the platform to a rigid structure, to changes in control functions, components, and the addition of a Fluid Bed Transfer System. These will all significantly increase your safety of operation while lowering your applied loads. In addition, you can derive even greater benefits, as follows:
- Reduced power consumption
- Increased Nominal lifting capacity. (>15%)
- Increased component life, meaning overall life extension of your system.
- Lower-cost electric motors
- Major reduction in starting currents
- Automated smart lifting.
- Fast Docking systems like automated blocking and in-haul systems
- Remote analysis so your problems can be evaluated without coming to the site.
The obvious success of Syncrolift has been imitated by others over the years, and there are a number of articulated platforms around the world that may or may not still be in service. So, if you are operating a shiplift supplied by Bardex, Brohl, Hydraudyne, IMG, Pearlson Shiplift Corp, Schiess Defries, or by others, call Syncrolift. Safety is our goal – and we will help you make your life safer, and hopefully save you some money too.
How do you know if your Syncrolift has an articulated platform? If no platform drawings are available, look at your Hoists or Motor Control Center. If there is a brass plate bearing the name "Pearlson Engineering Corp" you have an articulated platform.
Why not take advantage of this free consultation offer? We guarantee no platform structure will drop in the water if you change your articulated lift to a rigid configuration with Calypso.
Email us at [email protected]; any of our six Service Centers, or DM Consulting at the addresses below to reap the benefits of increased safety, lower costs, and optimized shipyard productivity. We are an international organization based in 7 different maritime regions and can quickly plan a visit to your yard.
San Diego, CA
Syncrolift AS, Norway
Syncrolift Middle East
SOURCE Syncrolift, Inc.