On many occasions, stripping out compressor or turbine diaphragms there is more often than not a dire shortage of space. This is most serious when a number of compressors are being overhauled at the same time resulting in lots of half diaphragms on individual pallets scattered around on the floor. This can create many tripping and falling hazards and of course, it is problematic when they have to be moved around to make room for other things or to be inspected, cleaned, or repaired.
A modular storage system was required which could accommodate a varying size range of diaphragms, have the ability to offer a lifting solution whilst taking up minimal floor space.
In our initial design discussions we found that, quite often, the operator of the machinery fabricated their own racking which tended to be gigantic constructions that were probably not certificated or subjected to stress analysis to ensure suitability for the job to be undertaken. This in itself is subjecting the operators to unacceptable risks especially when moving them around. Indeed now no lifting or storage equipment should be used under any circumstances unless it has been certified as safe to use. This means that here in the UK or anywhere else racking and lifting equipment is subject to yearly inspection to ensure that it is safe for further use. At this time any damage considered to affect its integrity must be repaired or the equipment scrapped.
To this end, we set out to provide our client with a product that is suitably designed using modern stress analysis techniques. This equipment is then manufactured and certified as required by current workplace law
Where possible our design included off-the-shelf components to reduce overall cost. Transport was a key consideration for us, so when the racks were not in use i.e. between shutdowns they could stack inside each other up to 6 feet high fitting within the internal space of a standard shipping container which could be transported between sites or to the place where they are to be used. During transportation or storage, all loose parts are stored within the base section of the rack between the rack floor and the floor of the rack above.
We offered our client a choice of finishes: either paint or galvanising with the option of a rack PVC covering to offer extra protection from the elements. MedTec also added a branding element with 3D printed components that had our client’s name indented into them. This was all undertaken by MedTec in-house using our 3d printers.
We supplied the racks with proof loading certification to 11 tonnes, with a documentation package including all material certification, welding information, and N.D.T results.
The timeframes for delivery of this product were extremely tight as the end client was on a shutdown, MedTec even managed to deliver to the site ahead of schedule, all logistics were managed by MedTec allowing our client to eliminate an extended supply chain.
Elliott Group has worked with MedTec to develop a storage/transportation rack for handling compressor diaphragms in response to our market’s demand for a safe method for handling such items. We found MedTec to be responsive and proactive with the development of the racks throughout the design stage, advising what was practical within the constraints given to them and again throughout manufacture until the point of delivery they ensured the finished product met our requirements both in terms of specification and documentation and certification, which was an essential element of the project.
Service Parts Manager
Global Service – Europe, Middle East & Africa Elliott Group