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SE 110.50 Cable under dead-weight



  • Catenary of a free-hanging cable under dead-weight


Technical Description

Free-hanging cables and ropes are often used to support a structure, such as stay cables. On suspension bridges they are the load-bearing element of the structure. In many calculations the influence of the dead-weight of the cable can be ignored, because it is low compared to the other loads. In the case of overhead power lines, however, the dead-weight of the cable is relevant to the design of the pylons. 

In SE 110.50 a free-hanging cable under the influence of its own dead-weight is investigated. A roller chain serves as the cable, and is mounted on two ball bearing-supported chain wheels. The chain wheel units are fixed to a cross-arm. The spacing between the chain wheel axles can be adjusted horizontally and vertically. Weights can be attached to both ends of the chain. The maximum sag is measured using scaled rules, and can be compared with calculated values. The sag is the distance between the connecting line of the bearings and the catenary (see also illustration: "Actual applied cable forces" on the next page). 

All the component elements of the experiment are clearly laid-out and housed securely in a storage system. The complete experimental setup is arranged in the frame SE 112.

The well-structured instructional material sets out the fundamentals and provides a step-by-step guide through the experiments.

Learning Objectives / Experiments
- determination of the catenary of a free-hanging cable
  * under dead-weight only
  * with additional loads
  * with a symmetrical setup (chain wheels at same height)
  * with an unsymmetrical setup
- measurement of the sag
- comparison of calculated and measured values


[1] determination of the catenary of a free-hanging cable
[2] symmetrical and unsymmetrical experimental setup possible
[3] roller chain as cable with 2 ball bearing-mounted chain wheels
[4] adjustable chain wheel axle spacing
[5] height of a chain wheel adjustable for unsymmetrical experimental setup
[6] cross-arm with scale to hold chain wheels and rule to measure vertical sag of chain
[7] 14 loads, 2 hangers 
[8] storage system to house the components 
[9] experimental setup in frame SE 112

Technical Data
Roller chain
- DIN 8187
- length: 2400mm
- weight: 0,95kg/m
Chain wheel, number of teeth: 17
- axle base: 600...1000mm 
- groove spacing: 50mm
- adjustable height of chain wheel: 0...300mm 
- hole spacing: 50mm
Measuring ranges
- horizontal: 0...1000mm
- vertical: 0...850mm
- graduations: 1mm
- 2x 1N (hangers)
- 8x 1N
- 6x 5N

Dimensions and Weight
LxWxH: 1170x480x178mm (storage system)
Weight: approx. 29kg (total)

Scope of Delivery
1 roller chain 
1 cross-arm with clamp
2 chain wheels with holders
1 rule
1 set of loads 
1 storage system with foam inlay
1 set of instructional material

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