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#MetalTheft, be it lead, copper or aluminium, is a global curse effecting the electrical industry at generation, transmission and distribution levels. From the power station to the person in the street, black-outs or power outages caused by criminal activity is a serious global problem. In the UK, the recycling industry is fuelling metal theft while police operations such as Operation Tornado places an onus on scrap metal dealers to check antecedents of those selling metals, and check metal for markings. The SMD (Scrap Metal Dealers) Act of 2013 strengthens licensing powers and requires SMD's to record distinguishing marks, although how this is policed is open to debate.
Trace-In-Metal (TiM) provides the ability to audit the path that stolen metals take through the recycling process. This has not been available before – anywhere in the world. TiM can close an existing intelligence gap as well as providing law enforcement with the vital evidence they need to secure a conviction. TiM works with the SMD Act and wants to support the electrical industry in being able to discriminate between what’s stolen and what’s not.
TiM are able to mark some copper now, using sprays to mark the cable sheath or bare conductors, such as copper earthing tape, busbars, earth straps and cables. Clearly, further exploration as to best methods, coverage and at what point in delivery chain it is marked is required. We would welcome feedback from the industry.
Please read our Blog Post : Trace-In-Metal : Preventing The Theft Of Metals, Copper & Cables
Thorne & Derrick UK are national distributors and worldwide exporters of Low & High Voltage Cable Installation, Cable Jointing, Hazardous Area & Electrical Equipment – T&D service UK and global businesses involved in cable installations, cable jointing, substation, overhead line and electrical construction at LV, 11kV, 33kV and EHV. T&D are the UK’s largest stockist supplier of Copper Earthing systems for the electrical industry.
By Chris Dodds November, 2014
A Guest Blog by Nico Frame (Marketing Manager at Silver Fox). Silver Fox are the global market leading, UK based manufacturer of cable labels.
Thorne & Derrick, a main distributor for Silver Fox, are delighted to announce a major project breakthrough into the utility power industry.
Silver Fox have recently supplied Spanish engineering giant Elimco with their Fox-in-a-Box® thermal cable labeling system for the labeling of power cables in high voltage 275kV substations being constructed at New Cumnock in Ayrshire, Scotland.
The project is part of SP Energy Networks, South West Scotland Collector Scheme.
As well as the Fox-in-a-Box® system, also procured were a range of cable labels that included the Fox-Flo® Low Smoke, Zero Halogen (LS0H) UV Stable Tie-on Cable Labels and the Legend ™ LNST Non-Shrink tubing. Zero halogen cable labels are extensively specified for the labeling, marking and identification of LSOH (Low Smoke Zero Halogen) cables – this includes plastic low voltage service, mains and 11kV cables.
Pictured: Silver Fox Fox-in-a-Box Advanced & Professional. The Silver Fox system prints cable labels quickly and easily. The complete labeling starter packs include: Plug'N'Play Thermal Printer, Labacus Innovator Advanced Software, Thermal Ribbon Sample Thermal Labels and Free Technical Support Service.
Zero halogen cable labels are installed by power and utility contractors working on behalf of UK DNO's where significant LSOH cable runs inside substations and buildings require a cable label system which preserves the zero halogen integrity of the cable circuits.
Pictured: Substations – Silver Fox cable labels are installed to identify low and high voltage power cables. Also control and power cables feeding control and protection panels, systems and distribution boards.
The Non-Shrink tubing was vital for Elimco as it eliminated the need for heat shrink as that would require a heat-gun permit or the time-consuming method of using individual ferrules. The ability to "cold-install" cable labels without resort to "hot-working" provides serious electrical safety advantages when labeling cables offshore in potentially explosive atmospheres. Non-shrink cable labels are ideal for Zone 1 and Zone 2 hazardous area cable marking – fast, simple and safe labeling significantly driving down total man hour costs.
Also provided to the project were the Silver Fox Legend™ LXL Laser Tie-on labels specifically for the internal sections of the New Cumnock substation. These are simply produced via templates on the Labacus software and printed using a normal office laser printer.
Silver Fox have been systematically testing their products to create world leading solutions to save time for the contractor and low maintenance for the client. All Silver Fox thermal solutions can be printed using the Silver Fox Fox-in-a-Box Cable Labeling System – using the same software, same printer and same ribbon.
Silver Fox cable labels are specified for both onshore and offshore cable labeling of LV-HV power cables – the cable labels are rigorously tested to ensure high performance in harsh operating conditions. Read more: Silver Fox Cable Labels – Salt Mist Spray Testing For Offshore & Marine Cable Labeling.
Silver Fox : A leader in UK manufacturing labeling solutions using a special Plug’N’Play thermal printer or a standard office printer – ensuring fast and efficient identification of cables, wires, optical fibers, panels and equipment – Silver Fox delivers solutions for the Energy, Power, Rail and Data & Telecoms industries worldwide.
Silver Fox’s production of independently tested durable labeling is only part of the story. It also offers three levels of software, all of which are downloadable from the Silver Fox website, for free trial. Developed in conjunction with engineers over the past 15 years or so, these software solutions offer an array of unique time-saving options which, for the time-critical project, can turn time into profit.
Silver Fox tests its labels at recognized independent UKAS certified test laboratories in compliance with a number of different MIL and other standards. Silver Fox is ISO 9001:2008 registered. Silver Fox has spent over 30 years developing its products. Its commitment to global business was recognized in 2005 by the Queen’s Award for Enterprise – International Trade.
Category: Cable Labeling & Marking
By Jack Nottidge, Thorne & Derrick.
In this second guest blog by Thorne & Derrick, the UK’s largest cable laying equipment distributor,we look at the equipment and process requirements for laying a cable in an open trench.
Open trench cable laying is often used as opposed to laying cables directly into cable ducts. This method of laying low, medium and high voltage power cables into the ground tends to be used where the cables in use are of a higher voltage and therefore have a greater overall diameter.
The Preparation Of The Open Trench
Prior to the cable being laid, the cable trench must be dug and prepared properly. This means that the cable trench must be of adequate size to allow for the cables and ducting required. Different cables will require different sized trenches – the higher the voltage, the bigger the cable and therefore the bigger the trench required. The trench width and depth also depends on the where the cable trench is being dug. For instance, a cable being laid underneath a public footway will not be laid as deep as one under arable land that is to be ploughed.
When a cable trench is to be dug, it should be sufficient to allow the installer to install the cables and ducting at depth for the cable being used. It should also allow the cables to be installed within the bending radii specified. The cable should be installed within the specified cable pulling dimensions and without damaging the cable sheaths.
Equipment Required For Open Trench Cable Laying
When laying a cable into an open trench, there are 8 key components within the typical equipment layout used excluding the trench and the cable.
1. Cable Winch– The cable winch is situated at the end of the cable trench and is designed to be simple and robust. The cable winch provides smooth and controlled pulling of the cables through the trench. It is the cable pulling winch that provides the actual pulling of the cable. There is a number of different cable winches available dependant on the type of cable being pulled. Cable winches vary between telecommunications, power cables and lightweight small power cabling.
2. Winch Wire Rope– The winch wire rope is attached to the cable in order for it to be pulled through. The wire rope gives extra strength and allows for heavier cables to be pulled through. In addition, the use of the winch wire prevents any potential damage being caused to the cable sheath.
3. Swivel Link– The swivel link provides the connection between the cable and the winch wire rope. Each swivel link is designed and used to allow the wire to rotate when being pulled and avoid kinking or twisting. The extra layer of protection provided by the swivel link means damage to the cable sheath is reduced even further.
4. Cable Socks –Cable socks are available in either stainless steel or Kevlar but are traditionally constructed of high tensile, galvanised steel wire. Often called cable socks or grips, these are another level of protection between the cable and the cable winch. Fitted to the end of the cable, they are attached to the swivel link and avoid direct contact with the cable.
5. Straight Cable Rollers– The straight line cable rollers are, as the name suggests, for use in the straight part of the cable trench. Varying in size and weight, the straight cable rollers are selected by the size of the trench they are to be used in. The cable rollers enable to the cable to be pulled through without making contact with the base of the trench which would damage the cable outer sheath.
6. Corner Rollers– Angled corner rollers are to be used within the cable trench where there is a bend in the trench. Typically these incorporate a vertical and horizontal cable roller to allow for the pulling of the cable. Providing the same level or protection as the straight cable rollers they are both used alongside each other.
7. Draw Off Roller– The draw off cable roller is the first piece of equipment the cable will come into contact with when pulled from the cable drum. When the cable is pulled through the open trench, the draw off roller leads the cable straight from the drum into the open cable trench. The cable is then pulled through the trench with the draw roller acting as an initial guide for the cable.
8. Cable Drum Trailer–The cable drum trailer is used to transport the cable drum. In addition the cable trailer is also used to stabilise the cable drum whilst the cable is being pulled through the trench.
Thorne & Derrick UK are distributors of LV-HV Cable, Installation, Cable Jointing & Electrical Equipment – we service UK and global businesses involved in cable installations, cable jointing, earthing, substation and electrical construction at LV, 11kV, 33kV and EHV.
T&D service utilities, power, construction, rail, mining, offshore, oil, gas and petrochemical industries.T&D distribute CatuElectrical Safety Equipment protecting workers on underground cables, overhead powerlines, switchgear and substations at LV, MV and HV.
Cable Pulling – Preparing Cable For Pulling When Installing Into Ducts
By Jack Nottidge, Thorne & Derrick
Thorne & Derrick are the UK’s leading distributor of Cable Pulling Equipment.
T&D service utilities, power, construction, rail, mining, street lighting, subsea, offshore, oil, gas and petrochemical industries.
Cable Pulling Equipment enables the installation of low and high voltage power, fibre optic, telecoms, subsea cables and umbilicals into cable duct or cable trench.
In this first of 2 guest blogs about cable pulling, T&D look at the preparation for cable pulling when installing cables into ducts. In the second blog T&D will discuss the typical equipment layout for pulling cables into open trench (underground).
Preparing For Cable Pulling Into Ducts
Cables installed into underground cable ducts are typically used on projects where the cable duct is buried deep into the ground, sometimes up to 1200mm. This is to provide adequate protection for the duct and therefore the cables which are often high voltage and potentially hazardous if inadequately protected or incorrectly pulled into the duct.
Due to the nature of the cables that are often installed in these applications, there are a number of checks that must be carried out prior to beginning the cable pull:
· The duct lines must be checked for any obstructions and anything that is found must be removed. This is often done with the use of duct brushes or ‘foam pigs’ which are pulled through the cable duct.
· It is essential to ensure that the cable duct is of adequate size to accommodate the cable to be pulled. This is done by pulling through a 3 metre length of cable through the duct which is subsequently checked for damage prior to the full cable being installed.
· If, during these checks, the 3 metre length of cable has any damage greater than half the depth of the outer sheath the duct route must be repaired before the full length cable is pulled through. This protects the integrity of the final cable.
The Equipment Used For Cable Pulling Into Ducts
Various equipment must be used when installing cables into underground cable duct. Cables can vary in size and voltage however the same process and equipment is used.
When installing cables, there is typically up to 9 different pieces of cable pulling equipment used :
1 Cable Winch– The cable winch is used for physically pulling the cable through the duct, reducing the need for manpower and increasing productivity. Electrically powered, the cable winch is much safer and reliable than manually pulling cables through the duct.
2 Rope Guide Roller– The rope guide roller is exactly as the name suggests – a roller to guide the draw ropes or cabling ropes that are coming out of the jointboxes or manhole. This is to reduce the damage and strain put on the ropes therefore pro-longing the lifespan of the equipment used. The rope guide roller is made from an aluminium roller mounted onto a frame that has been plated with zinc.
3 Bellmouth – The bellmouth is used as a means of providing additional protection to the cable when it is being pulled through the duct. The rollers on the bellmouth ensure that the cable can be pulled in any required direction without any damage being caused. The bellmouth is located at the exit of the cable duct through which the cable is being pulled.
4 Cable Drum Trailer Or Cable Jacks– The cable drum trailers and cable jacks are used as a means of storing and transporting cable drums. Cable drums are large wooden wheels which are used to hold cable. Cable drum trailers make the transportation of extremely heavy cable drums easier, safer and more reliable.
Often equipped with braking and road lighting, the cable drum trailers are attached to the back of an appropriate vehicle to assist in the transportation of cables. Cable jacks (hydraulic or screw type) are used as a means of supporting, stabilising and lifting the cable drums.
Cable drums are located at the edge of the manhole cover or opening when installing cable into underground ducts for the cable to be easily rolled off.
5 Swivel Link– The swivel link is a zinc plated, solid steel link that is attached to the winch rope. This link can, as the name suggests, swivel a full 360° allowing the rope to be pulled through without any twists occurring.
6 Conduit Rod–The conduit rod is fed through the manhole cover opening and is used to install draw or winch ropes. The conduit rod is manually fed through the underground duct and is extremely easy to handle. The conduit rod comes with a range of cable pulling accessories available such as flexible guide tips, end connectors and rod repair kits.
7 Cable Socks– Cable socks can also be called cable stockings or cable grips. These are used to support the pulling of cables through a duct. Attached to the end of a cable prior to pulling, the cable stocking is an efficient method of support when pulling the cable.
8 Manhole Roller– The manhole roller is specifically designed to be placed at the entrance of the manhole to assist in the guiding of the cable. Not only does the roller make the cable installation easier, it also protects the cable from being scraped on the edge of the manhole. The manhole roller is constructed of a steel frame and aluminium rollers.
9 Cable Lubricant–Cable lubricant is applied to the outside of the cables when being pulled through the duct. The lubricant assists in the pulling process by removing friction between the cable and the cable rollers. This not only speeds up the process but also prevents snagging and therefore damage to the cable.
Thorne & Derrick UK are distributors of LV-HV Cable, Installation, Cable Jointing & Electrical Equipment – we service UK and global businesses involved in cable installations, cable jointing, earthing, substation and electrical construction at LV, 11kV, 33kV and EHV. T&D service utilities, power, construction, rail, mining, offshore, oil, gas and petrochemical industries.T&D distribute Electrical Safety Equipment protecting workers on underground cables, overhead powerlines, switchgear and substations at LV, MV and HV.