RINGSCAFF scaffolding with sway compensation

Imposing modular scaffolding with a mathematical challenge:

Temperature fluctuations of the object affect statics

Tarragona
A structurally exceptional 90-metre-high RINGCAFF scaffold on a distillation column in Tarragona was fitted with platforms for material storage every 10 m. (Photo: EXIN Tecnicas Tubulares / Scafom-rux)

An unusual scaffolding project was now on display at a distillation column in the REPSOL Tarragona refinery. The scaffolding company EXIN Tecnicas Tubulares had been commissioned to erect a scaffold 90 metres high for sandblasting work.

EXIN Tecnicas Tubulares is a Scafom-rux customer and used the RINGSCAFF modular scaffolding for this challenge. Aluminium stairs with a platform were used for a comfortable and safe ascent. From a height of 40 metres, a platform was to be erected every 10 metres for the storage of materials and tools. These were designed with steel planks for pipe support, thus achieving a load capacity of 3.0 kN per square metre. Perforated steel planks from Scafom-rux are particularly suitable for sandblasting work, as no blasting material can be deposited on them, which would lead to an increased weight load on the statically already demanding scaffold construction.

To protect the environment from the blasting material and the workers from the weather, the entire scaffold was covered with protective tarpaulins. This increased the wind load even more, which posed a further difficulty in terms of statics for a scaffold with a height of 90 metres.

However, the biggest challenge for the scaffolding company was the temperature fluctuations of the distillation column itself. The anchoring had to be planned in such a way that contractions of the column of up to 16 cm in the upper area could be compensated.

For safety reasons, the scaffolding was taken out of operation from wind speeds of more than 65 km/h.