More Durable Electricity Distribution for Rural Areas with New Cable Type

The tangible outcome of a development project by Aalto University in Finland is now ready: a totally new, more economical cable type has been created. Now, electricity distribution can be ensured in scarcely populated areas even in stormy weather.

Ensto has been tightly involved in the development project, test installations have been carried out with Ensto accessories.

Strong and economical solution

The traditional, weighty (and thus expensive) underground cables have been developed for and are best suited to be used in urban areas. Now, researchers have developed a completely new, more economical solution for underground cabling in scarcely populated areas. The multi-purpose Kapeli cable is smaller in diameter and lighter in weight compared with traditional cables but still, it is mechanically extremely strong.

The costs of installing traditional cables increase when the soil is demanding. However, the Kapeli cable is suited also for demanding circumstances. In most challenging locations, cabling can even be done as an overhead line installation. For this, the researchers have developed mechanical protection, as well as overvoltage protection against storms and lightning.

Thorough testing for quality

The Kapeli cable and its accessories have been thoroughly tested. Moreover, the first test installations with the new cable have been made during summer and fall 2012 in Finland. Ensto accessories, such as tension clamps, suspension clamps, cold shrink underground terminations and joints are used in the test installation and they have exceeded the test requirements. The installations have been carried out by two Finnish utilities and so far, results are truly encouraging.

Developing lightweight cable network system

The Finnish power utilities actively search for new solutions which could replace the current, ageing electricity distribution networks. The Kapeli series of projects aims at developing a light-weight medium voltage underground cable network system, which is:

  • Economical
  • Flexible for changes
  • Less vulnerable to disturbances
  • Storm-resistant
  • Quick and easy to fix
  • Safe
  • As maintenance free as possible.

The new cable solution is created as a development project with several Finnish partner companies. Oy Merinova Ab was responsible for the project coordination Aalto University for the research input. The project was a part of the Sustainable Community Technology programme by Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation.

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