This CalTrans photo shows one of the slings being used to raise sections that weigh as much as 2.6 million pounds.

Big Lifts a Breeze at SF Bridge Project

Slings enable lifts of sections weighing as much as 2.6 million pounds for the tower sections of the reconstructed San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

The construction of a new earthquake-resistant, self-anchored suspension span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is being accomplished in part because of Holloway Houston HHIPER LIFT™ slings that include high-strength Spectra® fiber, Honeywell announced Dec. 7. Pound for pound, this fiber is 15 times stronger than steel, but it is light enough to float. It's a reinforcement material in the slings from Houston-based Holloway Houston.

The slings are being used to raise sections that weigh as much as 2.6 million pounds. The slings can be used to lift as much as 4 million pounds and have been used in offshore oil and gas construction and deepwater recovery operations, according to Honeywell.

"Spectra fiber's lightweight strength makes it ideal for use in extreme lifting applications like the replacement of the Bay Bridge," said Phil Wojcik, global business director for Honeywell's Advanced Fibers and Composites business. "Honeywell is honored to be playing such a critical role in modernizing one of the country's most iconic and important bridges."

Spectra fiber, which is made from ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene using a patented gel-spinning process, is used in applications such as security netting, rope, bullet-resistant armor, and curtains that protect windows and doors during hurricanes.

The bridge is undergoing an extensive seismic retrofit that will be completed in 2013.

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