Video of the Week – igus e-chains in offshore applications

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Ideal steel alternative for cable carrying in harsh environments 


Plastic energy chains from tribopolymer specialist igus are an ideal alternative to steel, which has been the design material of choice for many decades, for working in the harsh environments of the offshore industry. igus e-chains are tougher than steel for a given size and are, of course, much lighter. They are also inherently resistant to corrosion and weathering, and the best types are unaffected by exposure to virtually every type of chemical and petrochemical as well as by exposure to UV light from the sun.

In areas where explosive vapours or gases may be present – that is, those areas where the ATEX Directive applies, as it does to many areas of offshore installations – igus recommends e-chains made of igumid ESD (ATEX material). 


Available in many versions, energy chains provide mutli-directional support for cables that provide power, services and communication to moving systems. Typical applications include drilling crane carriages, rig skidders and link spans.


 igus offers a range of e-chains in different lengths and sizes, including the world’s largest plastic e-chain, the E4.350, with a maximum fill weight of >100kg/m. This e-chain is predominantly used for the movement of large, heavy and stiff cables, such as those used on oil platforms.


In addition, igus holds GL (Germanischer Lloyd) approval for many of its chainflex cables and, specifically for offshore applications, including the CF11.3D and the CF27.D cables with NEK-606 (Norsk Elektroteknisk Komitee) approval are also available, including control cable CF 170 D as well as servo cable CF270.