Scottish Power Energy Networks Cable Fault Location challenge

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SPEN Cable Fault Location challenge 

What's the challenge?

Scottish Power Energy Networks (SPEN) are seeking new approaches on how  to accurately find a break in a long, buried tube of plastic and metal.

When underground cables develop a fault, it can be difficult to pinpoint where the exact location of the fault is, even when the cable with the fault has been identified.

Currently, SPEN use a device which sends an electrical signal down the cable and measures the reflected signals, indicating the approximate length along the cable of the fault. However, this can still have a notable margin of error as it does not pinpoint the exact location of the fault on the ground.

Another tool SPEN uses is to send an electrical ramp through the cable, causing a spark to jump between the two sides of the broken cable. This causes a loud noise which can be detected with listening equipment, but it can be a slow process. 

Do you have the solution?

This challenge is open for responses until 11 November.

Apply for this challenge