Open Cut » Maintenance & Equipment
Our objective during this project was to develop a procedure that optimised radiographic image quality for the assessment of internal wire fractures within practical time constraints. It was also hoped that a determination of the likely uncertainty of assessment would be obtained to better inform decisions regarding removal of dragline ropes.
Basic information was also sought to confirm the pattern of fracture within dragline suspension ropes and to confirm/establish the confidence with which radiographic assessment and rope history information might be combined to more accurately estimate the number of wire fractures.
In addition, investigation of alternative non-destructive test methods were to be examined.
Due to the lack of availability of a suitable number of ropes to compare fracture profiles with radiographic results and rope history the project concentrated on the examination of alternative methods of rope non-destructive testing.
A potential technique for the testing of wire ropes was assessed using the impact-echo method. This technique is increasingly finding use as a means of assessing the integrity of concrete, although this is the first application of the technique to the testing of wire ropes known to the authors. Only a limited number of trials were performed and confirmation of the results will be required over a larger sample base before confidence in the new technique as an alternative to radiography is justified.