Dynamic Load Monitoring (UK) Ltd. (DLM), of Southampton, UK has delivered two load cells to Catena Inspection & Engineering Services Ltd. for use at a nuclear cleanroom site where propulsion systems are developed for the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MOD).
The load cells, of 500kg and 1,500kg capacity, were the latest products to be delivered to the undisclosed location by Catena, of Nottinghamshire, UK, which constantly provides equipment and services to the facility, principally related to proof load testing and lifting applications. Stainless steel shackles with custom engraved asset numbers were also part of this project.
Tyler Hickling, lifting and fabrication sales at Catena, explained that the order initially started with a request for load monitoring technology that could, firstly, measure low weights and, secondly, do so to an extreme degree of accuracy. DLM is a renowned manufacturer of equipment that can meet such requirements, while giving the user the ability to monitor data wirelessly, which is a further requirement of such end user environments.
Hickling added: “Given the nature of the facility, there wasn’t a great deal of information provided, beyond what we needed to know to source the best possible solution, which turned out to be a pair of custom telemetry tensile links. I was only privy to the maximum weight lifted and the resolution required. They will be used separately, repeatedly, for specific lifts where the weight needs to be monitored closely.”
As well as utilising load cells for proof load testing contracts, Catena is increasingly providing a range of force measurement technologies for a variety of industrial applications. DLM, a specialist in the design, manufacture, repair and calibration of load cells and load monitoring equipment, is its go-to manufacturer for product and expertise.
Hickling said: “Using telemetry load links and compression load cells allows us to move away from using loose weights for proof load testing when used with a hydraulic set-up; we can apply smaller, incremental loads in a more controlled manner. We can also use a load link in the line to check lifts are equally distributed and not exerting excessive unknown loads.”
These Catena-branded load cells were from DLM’s TL-3.0 family, a third-generation of its popular telemetry tensile link line. The lightweight wireless tension measuring unit combines a high level of performance with a robust design for harsh environments. They are made from aerospace grade aluminium and offer a range up to 800m (over 2,600 ft.) and a huge battery life of 700 hours. Hickling pointed out that the TL-3.0 can be paired with an unlimited number of displays to one load cell or 12 load cells to one handheld display.
Martin Halford, managing director at DLM, said: “We have worked successfully with Catena for many years now, especially on MOD-type contracts where off-the-shelf solutions are not suitable and something customised is required to meet the high defence standards. In this instance, we drew on our extensive experience within the marine and offshore industry to design a stainless steel version of our popular TL-3.0 telemetry load link, suitable for the maritime defence industry. It is fantastic to be able to play a small part in supporting the UK government in keeping our waters safe, and this type of work really fits in nicely with our focus on the offshore and marine sector, which is reflective in the products and services we offer.”