Representatives from across the utilities sector were shown first-hand how new developments in cable protection have made a significant step forward.
Centriforce, manufacturers of the Stokbord® Cover and Stokbord® Drum systems, held an event at its UK HQ to demonstrate both systems’ capabilities in delivering high-performance protection, with new gains in performance, capacity and sustainability.
Centriforce has developed a revised specification, in accordance with The National Grid Standard TS 3.05.07, ENA-TS 12-23 Class 1 and ENA-TS 12-23 Class 2 technical specifications, which takes the thickness from 14mm and 12mm, to 12mm and 10mm.
Simon Carroll, Centriforce CEO, said: “The focus on the day was to demonstrate how Centriforce Stokbord® Cover and Stokbord Drum are capable of meeting technical specifications – delivering consistent protection with the benefits of 12mm for The National Grid Standard TS 3.05.07 and ENA-TS 12-23 Class 1 and 10mm for ENA-TS 12-23 Class 2.
“Traditionally, it has been considered industry practice to refer to 14mm protection for The National Grid Standard TS 3.05.07 and ENA-TS 12-23 Class 1, and 12mm for ENA-TS 12-23 Class 2 technical specifications.
“We were involved in those initial specifications, but materials science has moved forward, and the strength and performance of Stokbord now means that the utilities industry can draw on our research and development activity to achieve optimum safety with these new levels.
“This advancement makes a strong economic case for our utilities clients – ensuring that the Stokbord solution continues to be the optimum choice where safety and security count – whilst offering cost savings and sustainability benefits as standard.
“That brings a variety of advantages, including the reduced labour and transportation costs all associated with the introduction of lighter materials.”
Stokbord is a highly versatile impact resistant product that protects underground utilities from damage and at the same time provides a highly visual alert of what lies beneath.
For the utilities sector, it is provided as a cable cover, which is a one metre tile, or in the new drum format – launched last year – which offers a faster and safer solution to installation.
Both systems can used to protect underground utilities, particularly high voltage electricity cables, but can also be used for water and gas pipes, as well as fibre optic cables.
They help to prevent damage to cables buried underground by ensuring that anyone digging in the area at some point in the future, where a cable is laid, hits the Stokbord before they hit the cable – preventing serious injury, as well as a costly and disruptive outage in the electricity system.
Simon added: “For decades, we have been recognised across the industry for our time-proven and trusted methods of keeping underground utilities safe.
“Stokbord is specified around the world for its ability to deliver heavy duty protection for buried utilities, including gas, water, electricity and telecoms.
“It’s built a reputation based on trust. We’ve been the ‘go to’ partner in utilities for more than 40 years, standing out as pioneers in the sector and seen as the experts in knowing what we are doing.
“That expertise and industry knowledge means we are now well-placed to deliver new levels of performance with 12mm and 10mm standards, for 2020 and beyond.”
As part of the event, the visitors to Centriforce were able to witness an on-site impact test by an independent consultant engineer, to see first-hand the impact resistance and specification capabilities at the reduced thicknesses.
Attendees also saw a demonstration of the Stokbord Drum system, where Stokbord supplied on a reel enables it to be rolled across a large area with minimal intervention.
Jonathan Pearce, Head of Sales at Centriforce, said: “The drum system was developed in our work with our customers, who recognised that the amount of time spent in the trench was a rising concern.
“We focused on creating a mechanical rather than manual installation, keeping operatives safer and at the same time significantly speeding up the process.
“It reduces the manual labour involved and creates a lower risk environment as operatives spend less time in the trench.
“With this system and Stokbord® Cover, there is now a choice to meet exact project needs.”