Longest endless timing belts help propel hovercraft

ContitechIn two new hovercrafts, the British manufacturer Griffon Hoverwork relies on timing belts with carbon tensile from ContiTech Power Transmission Group. At 5,502 mm (216.6 in.) and 4,956 mm (195.1 in.), they are some of the longest endless polyurethane belts that have ever been produced. They drive the propellers and turbines of the giant hovercrafts, which are employed to connect Portsmouth (England) and the Isle of Wight. The belts are made in cooperation of ContiTech and Griffon Hoverwork at the ContiTech site in Dannenberg.

The two new hovercrafts, which are currently under construction, each have two propellers and fans that interact to set the vessels in motion. The timing belts drive them.

“Due to the high powers that are transmitted within the drives of the hovercrafts, the Synchrochain Carbon is the ideal belt for this application,” said Barrie Oldham, industrial sales director, ContiTech UK. The vessels are equipped with two engines with 793 kW (1,079 hp) of power; they take up roughly the area of a tennis court and carry up to 88 people.

Griffon Hoverwork has equipped the drives of their hovercrafts with timing belts for quite some time. However, the use of the Synchrochain Carbon as well as endless timing belts, which exceed the 5-m mark, are new.

Contitech2The Synchrochain Carbon is wear-resistant and abrasion-proof. It transmits high power reliably. The heart of the belt is the carbon tensile member, which, at the same load, stretches less than an aramid tensile member. In addition, the high stiffness of the cord minimizes pre-tension losses, enhancing drive efficiency. The belt is nearly maintenance free, which helps minimize costs in the area of maintenance and replacement.

ContiTech Power Transmission Group

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