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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number NIA_SSEPD_0014
Title Underground Cable Overlay Cost Reduction
Status Completed
Energy Categories Other Power and Storage Technologies(Electricity transmission and distribution) 100%;
Research Types Applied Research and Development 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) 75%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc (SHEPD)
Award Type Network Innovation Allowance
Funding Source Ofgem
Start Date 01 September 2015
End Date 01 February 2017
Duration 17 months
Total Grant Value £540,000
Industrial Sectors Power
Region Scotland
Programme Network Innovation Allowance
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc (SHEPD) (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Project Contact , Southern Electric Power Distribution plc (SEPD) (0.001%)
Web Site http://www.smarternetworks.org/project/NIA_SSEPD_0014
Objectives ; The project will determine if the identified innovative cable overlay methods can reduce the current cost of cable overlay (quantitative information). ; The project will determine if the identified innovative cable overlay methods can reduce the disturbance to stakeholders through qualitative information collected from focus groups. ; The project will determine if the identified innovative cable overlay methods can reduce the environmental impact of the cable overlay process (qualitative and/ or quantitative) The project will be considered a success if it can determine the effectiveness (positive or negative) of the innovative cable overlay methods in comparison to the traditional open-cut trench approach. The effectiveness will be measured through variation of the unit cost of cable overlay (quantitative information); variation of the disturbance caused due to the innovative cable overlay method (qualitative information) and variation in the environmental impact of the cable overlay process (qualitative and/ or quantitative information).
Abstract Underground cable overlay is the activity through which a certain part of the underground network is replaced or reinforced. The traditional methods of cable overlay commonly involve open-cut trenches where the initial cable is decommissioned and the new cable is laid. Once the laying of the new cable is completed, a switch of connection between the former and the latter cable is performed and commonly the decommissioned/ redundant cable remains in the ground. The current method involves open cut trenches which is a costly operation and causes disturbance to the public and businesses due to site activities. Companies have developed innovative cable overlay processes which extract a previously installed cable and install a new cable at its position without having to open cut a trench along the entire route of the initial cable. They aim to reduce the cable overlay cost to the DNOs and therefore the customers by reducing the excavation and reinstatement cost and retrieving value from the extracted cable (copper or aluminium). In addition, they aim to reduce the disturbance created from traditional cable overlay methods by reducing the length of open-cut trenches required in order to complete the cable overlay. Two suppliers have been identified as being able to offer innovative cable overlay methods and both of them have utilised the cable extraction part of the cable overlay method at higher voltages within the UK. This project is going to investigate whether this technique for cable overlay can be applied at lower voltages (33kV, 11kV) in order to accommodate the needs of SSEPD and other network operators. These voltage levels have been selected upon the current belief that these methods need to be trialled at lower voltages prior to testing them at 66kV or 132kV where the risk to supplies is greater. LV is excluded from the project scope as the LV network present additional challenges to the proposed methodologies (i.e. frequent presence of joints, customers’ supplies, etc.). If the methodologies prove to be working effectively in the scoped voltage levels (11kV, 33kV), further work on the LV level may be proposed.Note : Project Documents may be available via the ENA Smarter Networks Portal using the Website link above
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 17/12/18