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Safety is a vital aspect of all activities taking place in a maritime environment. A critical component of this is an effective and safe operation of life rafts. A variety of companies provide training in life raft handling for offshore rig and platform personnel, helicopter pilots and the crews of ocean-going vessels.
One common training scenario is that of a helicopter ditching at sea. A mock-up of a helicopter cabin is suspended above a diving pool and dropped sideways into the water. Trainees have to get out of the helicopter and into a deployed life raft. These courses often run several times a week, throughout the year.
Life rafts are designed to be deployed only in an emergency, so deployment dozens of times a year for training purposes means conventional canvas-lined rafts have a limited lifespan. To reduce the cost of continually replacing training rafts, Dreamboats WA (part of DSBC Pty Ltd) designed and constructed a non-inflatable alternative called “Hewey”. This training raft comprises cylindrical, closed-cell foam sections coated in 2mm thick spray-applied Rhino TUFF STUFF.
“Hewey” training rafts have an expected lifespan of at least five years. Being solid foam there can be no leaks which virtually eliminates most maintenance requirements and allows continual use in the training environment: a considerable cost saving for those organisations that run survival training courses in the oil, gas and aviation industries. The stable life rafts have been approved by OPITO (Offshore Petroleum Industry Training Organisation UK) for practical use providing the organisation has a conventional aviation life raft for viewing purposes.
Polyurethane coated HEWEY life raft – work completed by Dreamboats, WA
“Hewey” training rafts are similar in appearance to a traditional reversible aviation life raft and can be customised to match any life raft used in existing training courses. Sized to fit into a standard 20ft shipping container. These training rafts are now shipped worldwide from the manufacturer’s Fremantle factory.
RLA has been working with polyurethanes since the early 1990s and now manufactures a range of consistent formulations in Australia which are suitable for a variety of applications. “Many people do not know that spray-applied coatings are a very versatile and adaptable method for protecting a range of flexible structures,” Baker added.
Whereas epoxies and paints form a solid shell, the flexibility of polyurethane coatings allows them to move with the expansion and contraction of the underlying structure and as temperatures change.
Rhino Linings Australasia Pty Ltd (RLA) was formed in 2000 and established manufacturing and distribution capabilities for the region. RLA manufacturers its spray applied coatings in Australia and can draw on the more than 30 years experience of its American parent. The company sources all its materials from local suppliers except for some very specialised chemicals which are imported from America.
Contact us if you have any queries regarding our product or interested in becoming a Rhino Approved Applicator.
Posted in: Rhino Linings Blog at 17 October 18
Rhino ArmaFloor provides a range of slip resistant coatings for marine flooring protection including decks, pontoons and galleys. These floor coatings not only look good, but are easy to clean and intolerant to the formation of algae, bacteria, and other growths.
If you own a boat, you know how important it is to maintain safe flooring for your deck and other access areas on your vessel. Safety is paramount for both you and your crew especially when it comes to the issue of a slippery boat deck, a regular occurrence particularly if you are a fishing enthusiast. Rhino ArmaFloor provides an exceptional non-slip coating to help alleviate this problem.
One key point to always keep top of mind is that there is no such thing as “non-skid” surface! It does not matter what anyone tries to tell you this is just not the case, particularly when it comes to stopping people slipping on boat decks.
Rhino ArmaFloor’s strong, durable coatings provide excellent wear resistance from regular foot traffic, it also offers high impact resilience especially when it comes to anchors and other gear regularly being dropped on the floor surface
Not just for your fishing boat, speed boat or luxury cruiser, Rhino ArmaFloor can be professionally installed by Rhino approved applicators in other areas including pontoons, walkways, or even spaces that require a more unique, decorative finish. So why not choose the obvious solution, for the ultimate in marine flooring protection opt for a seamless, slip-resistant epoxy or polyaspartic floor coating and protect your marine vessel and your crew.
Posted in: Rhino Linings Blog at 11 September 18
For a range of activities and operations in the maritime environment, small, manoeuvrable, robust, stable, high-speed boats are a necessity.
Rescue services must respond quickly to emergencies at sea and port authorities need to get harbour pilots to and from ocean-going vessels for safe operation within a port area.
Similarly, police and the military, need to pursue vessels that are suspected of being involved in criminal activity and get officers on board quickly and safely.
For the several decades, a range of rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RHIBs) have been built and refined by companies to meet the demands and stresses of all these tasks.
The combination of rigid hull and large inflatable buoyancy tubes was first developed in the 1960s. Unfortunately, these early developed inflatable sections were not very robust and were prone to deflating.
Research showed that the strength and durability of the inflatable sections could be dramatically improved by using spray-applied surface coatings to cover the tubes.
To be successful, coatings must be strong, flexible and resistant to the ravages of continual exposure to salt water and UV light.
Polyurethane coatings produced by Gold Coast-based Rhino Linings Australasia (RLA) are used by some RHIB manufacturers to protect and strengthen the inflatable sections and provide non-slip walkways on deck sections where required.
Rhino TUFF STUFF, a versatile spray applied polyurethane coating, provides maximum slip resistance with enhanced protection against impact, abrasion and corrosion. This spray-on application creates a single, seamless coating, that conforms to any shape and size and bonds to virtually any substrates.
Polyurethane coatings made by Rhino Linings Australasia have a patented mix ratio that has been developed over many years. “We have dedicated staff who understand the chemistry of the product,” said Denis Baker, Special Projects Engineer at RLA. “They have a great depth of knowledge and experience for which products can be used and in what situations.”
The elastomeric properties of Rhino’s coating systems allow for application to surfaces that are subject to vibration, expansion, contraction, movement, flexing, abrasion and impact. The selected coating, in this case, is extremely flexible while maintaining its integrity under repeated flexing, regardless of film thickness.
RHIBs range in size from 4 to 9 metres, although some can be as long as 18 metres. Their shallow draught, high manoeuvrability, speed and relative immunity to damage in low-speed collisions are advantageous in the situations in which they operate. Constructed with a solid, shaped hull and flexible tubes at the gunwale, the design of a RHIB is highly stable and seaworthy.
Posted in: Rhino Linings Blog at 14 August 18