Distributor and maintenance contractor Southern Africa Master Distributors (SAMD), which is the Africa representative for sealing solutions provider Beele Engineering, has trained and appointed resellers in key industries to install Beele Engineering products, says SAMD sales and marketing director Chris Lee.
“The demand for Beele Engineering products is incredible,” he tells Engineering News, adding that the company has been appointing resellers since April to deal with this demand.
SAMD engineers teach companies how to do the installation properly, as well as how the assurance process works, but SAMD will still oversee the assurance of installations, Lee adds.
The resellers will also initially receive sales assistance and engineering support from SAMD.
“One of the key strengths of Beele Engineering products is their being disarmingly simple to install, but it is important that the standards of installation don’t drop because of this. The quality of the actual installation of the products is extremely important,” Lee points out.
Training sessions are held at SAMD’s training centre at its Lanseria office, in Johannesburg. Lee notes that SAMD considers only companies that operate in the key industries – including marine, power distribution, mining and renewable energy – to which Beele Engineering supplies in Africa, and that have a strong record in high standards and assurance.
Lee notes that there has recently been interest in Beele Engineering products from the commercial building and communications sectors, with the latter including network data and telecommunications centres.
He advances that the renewable-energy sector is gaining the most traction. “These projects are environmentally vulnerable and operate in harsh conditions.”
Such projects – for example, wind farms or solar plants – are exposed to water, sand, rodents and ultraviolet (UV) rays. Lee emphasises that these applications require proper sealing, and Beele Engineering products can provide protection against these risks, as well as life durability of up to 50 years.
An issue in the sealing industry is using polyurethane foam, which he says is often used, but does not work. “By using polyurethane foam, you are not solving a problem, you are creating one.”
Rodents and UV rays destroy polyurethane foam, which creates a maintenance hazard. Lee notes that polyurethane foam is cheap and is the norm to use in South Africa.
SAMD is in negotiations to supply Beele Engineering products for a solar plant in the Northern Cape, where polyurethane foam has been used to seal penetrations in the plant. “The polyurethane foam is destroyed, although the plant was commissioned in 2015 and the life of the plant is about 20 to 30 years. If the polyurethane foam continues to be used, it would need to be replaced ten times over the lifetime of the plant,” he explains.
The importance of sealing penetrations in the different industries must be understood and it is necessary to use the correct products to protect infrastructure, Lee concludes.