Qualification & Verification Testing
Qualification & Verification testing is indispensable to fall protection equipment manufacturers and users. Testing assures consumers that a product will perform to its specifications. This is especially important when a failure of a product can significantly impact the health and safety of the user. Testing is also used to verify that a product meets regulatory and voluntary standards.
Gravitec offers a range of testing services to ensure product integrity and conformity to CSA and ANSI standards. Service offerings include:
Gravitec has the capability to deliver documented, comprehensive fall protection product testing. Our ISO 17025 accredited testing laboratory is fully equipped with a drop test tower system, integrated static test bay and other instruments selected and configured by the product test engineer to address various testing needs. Proprietary data acquisition and motion detection software accurately record forces during dynamic and static performance testing.
Results can also be captured using high-speed video and photography. Engineers are able to visually identify the cause of a product failure with greater ease using high speed imagining equipment.
Gravitec conducts rigorous and nondestructive in-the-field testing for all categories of fall arrest and travel restraint systems.
Field testing allows us to evaluate in place fall protection systems and components under the conditions in which they will be used. Qualified testing technicians are sent to your location to check strength, performance, durability, wear and tear, and other client-specified factors.
Field test data is measured using our proprietary data acquisition system. A full report is provided, which details our findings and includes full-color photographs and graphed test results. We have a full-time staff of engineers that provides calculations on existing anchors.
Gravitec designed a specialty lanyard that had a high level of consistency with its deployment force, maximum arrest force and deployment length. Gravitec wrote a specification for the lanyard and developed a testing procedure for the pin and receptacle to verify its capabilities.
Third-party qualification and verification testing is carried out at Gravitec’s state-of-the-art facility in our ISO 17025 accredited testing lab. ISO 17025 accreditation for calibration and testing laboratories provides end users with added assurance of the accuracy and repeatability of test results.
The scope of Gravitec’s ISO 17025 accreditation for ANSI Z359 and CSA Z259 conformity assessment includes:
- Activation force testing of energy absorbers
- Static strength testing of energy absorbers
- Dynamic performance testing of energy absorbers
- Static strength testing of full body harnesses
- Dynamic performance testing of full body harnesses
- Static strength testing of positioning lanyards
- Dynamic strength testing of positioning lanyards
- Qualification testing of anchorage connectors
- Dynamic strength testing of fall arresters
- Dynamic performance testing of fall arresters
- Static strength testing of self-retracting lifelines
- Dynamic strength testing of self-retracting lifelines
- Dynamic performance testing of self-retracting lifelines
- Retraction tension testing of self-retracting lifelines
- Static strength testing of ladder climbing devices
- Dynamic performance testing of ladder climbing devices
- Dynamic strength testing of ladder climbing devices
A large aircraft company called upon Gravitec to test a fall protection system that they designed for the wings of their aircraft. Maintenance personnel would be exposed to fall hazards of up 15 feet while working on the leading and trailing edges of the wing. The company requested testing be performed using a full-scale test specimen of the fall protection system.
It is common practice among fall protection equipment manufacturers to declare conformity based on internal activities and controls. This is referred to as first-party testing. For first-party testing of fall protection products, Gravitec will send a qualified engineer to oversee the final testing of a product in accordance with ANSI Z359.7 requirements.
Forensic Testing & Analysis
An effective way to prevent future fall accidents is to understand how an accident occurred. Often, fall accidents are the result of fall protection equipment misuse or lack thereof, but injuries and fatalities may also be the result of product failure.
Gravitec offers independent forensic analysis and testing services to identify root causes and contributing factors of a fall accident. Gravitec fall protection experts will investigate the accident and provide expert witness testimony. Our highly qualified engineering staff reviews the evidence and integrates outside design parameters to reconstruct the accident and establish what happened. Gravitec will also provide corrective measures (whether PPE, training or engineering needs) to prevent a re-occurrence.
The purpose of this testing was to determine whether the existing 1.4 multiplier comparison between a human body and a rigid test weight for testing fall arresting equipment is suitable for current technology.Reduction of the 1.4 multiplier to reflect current fall protection technologies entails increasing the weight of the rigid test weight used in dynamic performance drop tests on energy absorbing lanyards and other fall arresting devices. A major feature of this test was to gather test data using both human subjects and a rigid weight capable of being heavier or lighter to match each human subject’s weight… Read More
It is widely acknowledged that when personal protection equipment is activated during a fall, some of the energy of the fall is absorbed by the human body. When conducting dynamic fall protection equipment tests using a rigid weight, there is a need to compensate for the fact that a human is not involved. Historically, a multiplier of 1.4 has been used to compensate for the energy-absorbing qualities of the human body in rigid weight tests. This standard has been applied by all testing agencies, governing bodies, and standards organizations… Read More