Refereed Articles Research on synthetic rope and its future in timber harvesting
Joel Hartter , Jared Leonard , John Garland and Steve Pilkerton
Steel wire rope is used for many logging applications. It has served the industry well in terms of strength, durability, and longevity. However, steel wire rope is difficult to use because it is stiff, heavy, and unyielding. These characteristics can lead to fatigue and exhaustion, and may contribute to worker injuries. Ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene synthetic rope has the potential to replace steel wire rope for selected logging applications. Research shows ergonomic gains and other operational effectiveness with its use. This paper presents research results, potentials, and issues in improving economic and ergonomic performance of ground-based and cable logging. Potential social and environmental benefits are also discussed. Further training, research and promotion are necessary to put this new technology into the hands of users and assure adoption in the forestry sector. (no keywords)
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