The natural maritime environment is quite different from the terrestrial environment. The service lifetime of maritime equipment is generally much lower than that of equipment on land because of the salt water and the stronger ultraviolet light (UV light). Additionally, high-strength cable is desired on account of the intense work that is done on ships and offshore oil platforms.
Ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) fiber is quite suitable for the maritime environment for the following reasons: First, the fiber is of high strength and modulus. The tensile strength of the fiber is 15 times that of steel wire rope and 40% greater than aramid fiber. The specific strength of the fiber is 2.6 times greater than carbon fiber, 1.7 times greater than aramid fiber, and 4 times greater than nylon 66. Secondly, UHMWPE fiber is very resistant to chemical corrosion and UV light, and the mechanical properties of the fiber don’t decrease after coming in contact with seawater or being exposed to the sun for a long time. Finally, the fiber can float on the surface of the water easily thanks to its low density (0.97g/cm3).
Ropes, slings, and anchor lines used on ships; head ropes and lifting ropes used on offshore oil platforms.