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[WRE | SPOTLIGHT]


be hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars. Rope IQ has powerful analytics that a company can use to analyze rope spend and optimize rope lives by replacing ropes at the right time—or gain insights into using a higher-performance product to extend rope lives without compromising safety.”


READY FOR MARKET Development being what it is, Gillespie knew he’d face challenges getting both the company and the product off the ground. “We found that there are broadly two approaches


to rope inspection: One—companies who see it as a necessary evil in order to inspect ropes, and therefore want to do it with the minimum of fuss. Tese companies then can fall into two categories: those that risk safety by changing ropes out too late, and those who are more risk adverse, and retire the rope too early when there is ample residual life left. And the second approach: Companies that try to implement good practices but are lacking the tools to do this easily. Rope IQ meets this need.” As for research and development, Rope IQ underwent


a long process, according to Gillespie. “And that included extensive automated and manual testing to ensure the software was robust. For the artificial intelligence, we gathered and took thousands of photographs of rope problems in order to ‘train’ the system to recognize and assess corrosion and deformations.” Once the product was determined ready for the


market, Gillespie didn’t hesitate. “Te product has been on the market now for about nine months, but only actively selling this year,” he said. “It’s currently implemented in several locations, including an automated warehouse for Coca Cola in the UK. In addition to this major interest, we’re in advanced discussions with companies in ports, logistics, steel manufacturing, and the nuclear industry. We also have distributors pushing the product in the UK as well as India.” As for prospective customers, Gillespie pointed


out that he’s seeing a lot of potential with companies that run critical operations or those that have 24/7 operations where limiting downtime, particularly unplanned downtime, is critical. He also sees a distinctive difference between the old and new way—and how Rope IQ simply makes the wire rope space safer.


“Te old way was to use a gut feel, which generally would mean that even a minor defect would result in the early retirement of the rope—good for safety but not good for the finances,” he emphasized. “A lack of knowledge within some companies would simply mean that defects were not picked up or analyzed as being dangerous, and a rope would either be replaced just in time or just too late. Implementing Rope IQ enables users to be warned of late inspections and enables them to replace ropes at the right time—when they are still safe and have not reached a dangerous condition.”


Lifting operations on an offshore platform.


RIPE FOR CHANGE


As to how customers implement Rope IQ and what exactly they get with their purchase, Gillespie explained, “Rope IQ is sold on a per-crane subscription service, renewable on an annual basis. Tis allows use of the software on any device that is internet enabled—from a PC/Mac to a tablet, or even a mobile phone. It is built on a progressive web app, which means that no software installation is required—just a modern internet browser.”


Users can also configure Rope IQ to reflect their


business—from a single-site operation to a multi-national company with multiple locations, he added. “Once locations are set up, you then set up cranes for a site, and then ropes for the particular crane. Rope IQ has over eighteen thousand rope records from the world’s leading brands, pre-configured to make data setup easy. It also has clone facilities to speed up addition of multiple cranes and ropes of the same type. Once the base data is created, maintenance of the data is simple, as a retire-rope routine recreates the base data for the new rope at the touch of the button.”


WIRE ROPE EXCHANGE MAY–JUNE 2020 25


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