There are a number of classification societies offering certification of anchors. Anchor manufacturers frequently advertise the stamp of a certain classification or approval in their literature or on products, but many are less than forthcoming about exactly what the various terms truly mean. Loosely speaking, certification itself only applies to larger anchors, but it comes with type approval and classification which can be applied to an entire range.
Many societies are old and have strong traditions. Some are specialist shipping registers and operate entirely in the marine industry. Below are those commonly used.
Type approval is an abstract endorsement by the society of the anchor's design, or "type". The drawings and production plans of the anchor are examined by the society's experts, who either approve or return designs with comments and requests. Type approval may apply to an entire range of anchor sizes, even if only the larger models are specifically certified and tested. It implies recognition of the anchor's proof of concept, but has no basis in testing and does not speak to the performance of the design nor the quality of the product.
HHP (High Holding Power) has been used for many years since the CQR was released in the 1930s. The majority of societies now recognize and offer the higher classification of SHHP (Super High Holding Power). These acronyms represent performance standards that relate to relative holding power. The classified anchor is tested along with a "standard stockless anchor":
As with type approval, HHP or SHHP classification may apply to an entire range of anchor sizes, even if only the larger models are specifically certified and tested.
Certification itself is the overarching standard imposed by the society. For anchors to be "certified", they must be individually inspected and proof tested. This is only done with larger anchors (about 70 kg / 150 lb or more, depending on the particular society or office). The type approval and classification status is inherited from initial examination and testing.
There are basic process standards, plus minimal engineering specifications which relate to heat treatment of castings, quality of welding, and so on. Anchors can be drop-tested, and strength can be proof tested by applying specific minimum loads to the shank while the flukes are held in a special rig.
Once completed to the society's satisfaction, the certified anchor must sport a collection of information, including the society's name, a serial number of some kind by which to trace the anchor's history, its weight, the acronym "HHP" or "SHHP" if applicable, amongst several other details.
The Rocna Original anchor has RINA type approval and SHHP classification for galvanized models between 55 and 110 kg (see our RINA certificate here). This is an extensive process which includes material testing, proof load testing and welding testing. We are currently in the process of updating the Rocna SHHP classification for the full Rocna Original galvanized product range.
In addition, individually certified anchors are available for custom order. These anchors are currently produced in a RINA certified partnering facility.
RINA is a member of the IACS and the Rocna classification will be accepted by all other notable societies including Lloyd's, DNV, Bureau Veritas, ABS, and others as equivalent with their own rules.