DEUS Descent Technology

 

What is a DEUS controlled descent device?

DEUS controlled descent devices are tools designed to provide simple, safe controlled descent, either hands free or under manual control. Using one can be incredibly easy. Behind this simplicity is a complex and ingenious system at work every time the device is engaged.

Currently DEUS offers two SERIES of controlled descent devices:

  • The DEUS 3000 Series represents systems designed for individual, personal use in professional markets, for bailout, escape, rescue, work and more.
  • The DEUS 7000 Series includes heavier systems with automatic control for a variety of continuous and/or repetitive use situations, such as mass rescue, recreation and backup belay for training and rescue.

DEUS is continually in development of new and different product lines to address different markets and applications.

What is a vertical rescue system?

Vertical rescue systems are complete solutions for self-rescue and assisted rescue over vertical distance (i.e., height). DEUS controlled descent devices are part of vertical rescue systems, when combined with the appropriate rope and connectors.

How does a DEUS controlled descent devices work?

Using a DEUS device can be incredibly easy. Behind this simplicity is a complex and ingenious system at work every time the device is engaged. While each Series of DEUS vertical rescue devices works slightly differently, all are currently based on similar technology.

DEUS devices include series of brakes, both simple and sophisticated, built around particular rope specifications. Together, the multiple brakes in a DEUS device enable four important core functions of the system - 1) protecting from free-fall; 2) limiting descent to a safe speed; 3) allowing hands-free operation; and 4) enabling precise manual control.

Ingenuity, proven technologies, German manufacturing and corrosion-resistant materials make DEUS controlled descent devices engineering marvels of safety, simplicity and reliability.

What types of brakes are used in a DEUS controlled descent device?

DEUS Rescue pioneered the concept of using multiple redundant braking systems in their controlled descent devices. While other available controlled descent systems utilize centrifugal brakes, a DEUS controlled descent device uses multiple integrated brake technologies that act synergistically and redundantly to increase safety and flexibility.

In addition to centrifugal brakes, both DEUS 3000 Series and DEUS 7000 Series devices add automatic, hands-free figure-8 brakes for redundant safety. The DEUS 3000 Series also adds a disk-actuated drum brake, while the DEUS 7000 Series adds a dynamic rope compression brake.

  • The hands-free, self-adjusting figure-8 operates in a single plane to eliminate rope twist and guards against free-fall. Figure-8 brakes have been used by mountaineers for decades because of their simplicity and proven reliability.
  • The disk-actuated drum brake adds hands-free control to descent speed. The patented DEUS design is infinitely adjustable through its full range of controlled speed simply by turning and setting the control knob. The control knob is designed for two-finger adjustment with wet gloves and cold hands.
  • The centrifugal brakes in DEUS controlled descent devices act as governors and limit descent to a safe speed. The centrifugal brakes are made in Germany. They are the result of 80 years of life-safety brake experience and expertise. They are the best in the world.
  • The manual rope-tailing brake has no moving parts and gives you complete finger-tip control over descent, independent of the other brakes in the DEUS system. Tail the free end of the rope and descent can be easily held at a complete stop, or allow descent speed to increase up to the maximum descent speed of the system.


How are the centrifugal brakes in DEUS systems different from the centrifugal brakes in other controlled descent systems?

The centrifugal brakes in some controlled descent systems are driven by large speed-up gears. This increases size and weight, and can make them prone to failure when shock loaded. If even a single gear tooth breaks on any of the multiple gears, the result is dangerous free fall. DEUS systems use direct-drive centrifugal brakes which are smaller, lighter and more reliable.

Do DEUS controlled descent devices have built-in redundancy?

Many of the DEUS controlled descent devices include multiple built-in braking systems for redundant safety. The DEUS 3000 Series individual vertical escape and rescue systems include four redundant brakes: a self-adjusting figure-8, a disk-actuated drum brake that can be set at "stop" or "go" or anything in between with a simple control knob, a direct-drive centrifugal brake, and a manual rope tailing brake. Multiple redundant brakes mean safety, reliability, flexibility and control.

Do DEUS controlled descent devices help manage shock load?

Yes. Shock load is the enemy of any rope evacuation and rescue system. It can break equipment and injure people. While every effort should be taken to avoid shock loading the system, it can never be eliminated entirely. DEUS controlled descent devices are designed to engage softly to minimize the effects of shock load.

  • The DEUS 3000 Series is designed with automatic shock load protection, whether set to "go" or "stop." When set to "go," the brakes in the 3000 Series are designed to engage gradually and sequentially to moderate and absorb shock load. When set to "stop," the 3000 Series is designed to slip when it experiences a load of more than 700 lbs. Once the shock load is absorbed, slip stops.
  • The DEUS 7000 Series has exclusive DEUS "Soft Engagement Technology" to internally absorb shock load to avoid equipment damage and personal injury. Rather than locking up when shock loaded, the DEUS 7000 Series engages softly and in stages: 1) the Euler friction brake engages gradually to absorb load, 2) the dynamic rope compression brake engages to add friction, 3) the flywheel accelerates to absorb kinetic energy, and 4) the centrifugal brake gradually engages to control speed.

How are DEUS controlled descent devices manufactured?

DEUS controlled descent devices are built with machined, not stamped or cast operating parts. Materials include aluminum, stainless steel, titanium and brass. The result is precision, reliability, toughness and long life.

Is the maximum descent speed of DEUS systems affected by weight?

In general, with DEUS systems a heavier load will descend a bit faster than a lighter load. However, every system is rated for a maximum speed, which is based on maximum load. Refer to the product specifications for the rated maximum descent speed of each system.

How is descent speed controlled in a DEUS system?

Descent speed is controlled using two internal brakes in the DEUS device.

  • First, turning the control knob from "stop" to "go" changes the setting of the disk-actuated drum brake, which controls descent speed. With two fingers, turn the control knob to the right (toward "stop") to go slower; turn it toward "go" to go faster.
  • Second, with the control knob set to "go" (i.e., not at full stop), the manual brake can also be used to control descent speed. The manual brake is very simple to use: just hold the free end of the rope in your gloved hand and pull the rope away from the device. The harder you pull, the more braking effect. The manual brake can be used to completely stop descent even if the control knob for the brake is turned all the way to "go."


Do I need to be concerned about my DEUS controlled descent device getting hot during descent?

While heat is an unavoidable consequence of controlled descent, DEUS devices and ropes have been designed to handle that heat. Two brakes in DEUS systems work without putting friction on the rope. And, every DEUS controlled descent device is durable so it can absorb a lot of heat before getting hot.

Read more about heat in the Instruction Manual of your DEUS controlled descent device. Then, contact a DEUS Certified Trainer for specific instructions on methods of managing heat during long descents.

Are DEUS descent devices certified to industry standards?

All DEUS controlled descent devices are designed to meet or exceed a variety of industry standards. Third-party testing is underway continuously to verify and certify our systems the combination of devices and ropes to NFPA, ANSI and EN standards. Our descent systems have been third-party tested and certified to the following standards:

  • DEUS 3100, 3200 and 3300: NFPA 1983 "Fire Escape"
  • DEUS 3700: ANSI Z359 Fall Protection standard, EN 341
  • DEUS 7300 and 7500: NFPA 1983 "General Use"


For information on the certifications of other DEUS products, contact DEUS Rescue.

 

Where are DEUS controlled descent devices manufactured?

DEUS controlled descent devices are the result of a collaboration of American and German ingenuity, engineering and manufacturing.

Ropes, kit components and accessories are sourced from best-in-class manufacturers in the United States, Canada and Europe.