A chat about cables with SRP
Kathleen Wolf-Davis has a chat about cables with Rick Hudson, PE, Engineering Supervisor, Distribution Improvements, with Salt River Project about the cables in their system and the rejuvenation process.
Energy Central, September 8, 2016
” Can you tell us why you chose to pursue cable rejuvenation?
In the mid-1990s there was a public outcry because of the number of failures occurring in the system. As a result we were spending all of our resources on cable replacement activity (replacing direct buried cable with cable pulled through conduit) but not having the reach we knew we needed for our system.
Even if we had unlimited funds, we couldn’t replace all our cable at one time, as we would be limited by labor. We have found our sweet spot is to replace 1 million feet of cable per year. Unfortunately, we still have over 20 million feet of URD cable. Which means 20 years to replace this remaining cable. As a result, we are finding that by using cable injection/rejuvenation, we are able to have a much greater reach within our system to avoid failures in the other cables. It’s a proactive approach we find is working very well.
Since 1993, all new distribution cable is installed in a conduit system. It’s more reliable and we do not have to worry about cable being affected by native backfill or settling issues.
What benefits have you seen from this project? What advice would you give other utilities looking to replace a lot of old cable?
Since we adopted cable rejuvenation into the revised management of our cables, we have nothing but positive feedback. Our failure rate is improving and the process has significantly improved our bottom line. This makes all of our constituents happy. I would encourage utilities to talk to other utilities that have implemented injection to rejuvenate their cables. Find out how the process has worked for them and why. When it comes right down to it, the cost savings and improved reliability are the drivers to integrate this process into a completely proactive approach to managing older cable assets. “