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Composite Shell Joint Retrofit Trial

This project aims to develop a safe, cost effective alternative to removal and replacement of defective LV joints, lowering the unit cost per repair. The project will innovate an existing jointing technique which involves encapsulation of joints in resin-filled plastic shells where traditionally this approach is only adopted on new joints, the project proposes to adapt this technique to repair existing, defective LV branch (T) joints.

Project-on-a-Page summary

Project data

Start date: 01/09/2015
End date: 01/05/2017
Budget: £186,000

An increasing number of defective joints have been discovered within the pits ranging from a loss of insulation to a loss of earth. Traditionally, defective low voltage joints are removed and replaced following a fault which can require a large excavation and live jointing. This reactive approach can lead to Customer Minutes Lost and Customer Interruptions or if the fault is disruptive, the pit cover can be ejected explosively, potentially injuring a member of the public.

This project has developed a safe, cost effective alternative to repair defective joints.

The project will research the existing market, design, develop and trial and LV jointshell which can be installed on an LV joint to avoid moisture ingress inside the joint and its failure. Plastic shells will be designed and developed in conjunction with supplier.. They will be encapsulated to be wrapped up on an LV joint to avoid moisture ingress into the joint. The compatibility of the polyurethane resin (JEM Resin) with bitumen compound will be explored at this stage. It is proposed to contact existing resin/shell producers to gain an understanding of the limitations of the resin and carry out trials where required.

The design of an LV joint shell is innovative and has never been trialled before to prevent LV joint failure within GB networks.

The project will demonstrate a new type of joint shell can protect an LV joint from failure and water ingress. A network trialled will be carried out to confirm this.


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