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Split Pad Installation – Connecticut, USA

Background

The DMC Power engineering team was approached by a major Northeast United States Utility to find one solution for two common problems on job sites: raising and installing multiple heavy lengths of cable, and replacing a failed cast connector that caused an outage.

Our engineering group researched the issue and conducted design modifications and lab testing to support the customer and come up with a simple and easy to implement solution.

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Solution

Instead of lifting two long, thick pieces of cable that are permanently attached to a 4-hole pad, we split the 4-hole pad down the middle to create a Right and Left 2-hole pad, effectively reducing the total weight by 50% and making it easier to move and install even the largest cables.

By using a split pad we are also able to make adjustable barrel distances for a completely customizable configuration. By designing in adjustable barrel distances, the spacing can be extremely close together since they are swaged separately but installed together.

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The customers old cast connectors split due to inferior materials and ice issues caused by the lack of a weep hole, so in addition to the standard barrel lengths we designed a long barrel version. This solution allowed the customer to cut out the bad cast connector, save the existing cable run and use the long barrel to make up the cable length difference, saving a tremendous amount of time and cost as the repairs had to be made quickly during the outage.

The long barrel connectors have also been tested and installed as a standoff (outrigger) on substation switches.

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All connectors were designed and tested to have a welded strength rating of 50% above what the Utility factored in for worst case scenario breakage due to wind, ice loads and major faults.

Conclusion

The contractor was given a total of 24 days to replace failed connectors at various Substations outages and completed them all within 8 days without incident.

The customer was extremely happy we were able to quickly develop a solution that met their needs and incorporated our superior materials, light weight tools, single swage installation and in-house design, testing and manufacturing capabilities.