Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 

Connector Research Will Mean Secure Power Future

>From the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology For immediate release

CONNECTOR RESEARCH WILL MEAN SECURE POWER FUTURE

Little bits of aluminium crucial to keeping our lights going are being re-examined in a project that will give us a more secure power supply as future demand increases.

Electropar - an Auckland engineering, importing and manufacturing company - and Industrial Research Ltd are working on improving connectors, without which electricity could not flow along power cables.

The project is supported by Technology New Zealand, the Government agency that invests in research into new products, processes or services.

The cylindrical or elliptical links join the wires in the network. They are on power pylons, in boxes or in pillars, and not usually noticed "unless you go looking for them", says Electropar's managing director, Grant Wallace.

"They keep your lights turned on and your computer going."

The links are one of the weak points in the power supply, and an expected heavier electricity use is spurring the research.

"We're looking at the electrical loads of tomorrow," Mr Wallace says.

"The current links work now because the designers were conservative, and so they can handle existing electrical loads.

"But this project is about preparing to deal with the increasing loads of the future.

"Every joint must operate at a lower temperature than the wire. If they don't they can burn off," he says.

"So, with the need for more electricity, we are keen to understand how our joints work as connectors.

"The lines companies are interested in what goes into their network of wires, so that they can avoid huge maintenance costs."

He says that scientists in the United States and Europe have seen examples of problems in connectors, and have written higher standards for them.

"So we're working to the latest technical standards."

Electropar is a privately owned company that supplies materials, including connectors, to the energy industries. It has 52 employees.

-ends-

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

'Unprecedented' Conditions: Genesis Coal Burn 5-Yr High

Coal-fired generation from Genesis Energy’s Huntly operations was the highest in more than five years in the December quarter, as a combination of low hydro storage and plant outages were compounded by tight natural gas supplies. More>>

ALSO:

Climate Summary: NZ’s Equal-2nd Warmest Year On Record

Annual temperatures were above average (+0.51°C to +1.20°C above the annual average) across the majority of New Zealand... 2018 was the equal 2nd-warmest year on record for New Zealand, based on NIWA’s seven-station series which began in 1909. More>>

ALSO:

GDP: Economic Growth Dampens In The September Quarter

Gross domestic product (GDP) rose 0.3 percent in the September 2018 quarter, down from 1.0 percent in the previous quarter, Stats NZ said today... GDP per capita was flat in the September 2018 quarter, following an increase of 0.5 percent in the June 2018 quarter. More>>

ALSO:

Up $1.20: $17.70 Minimum Wage For 2019

Coalition Government signals how it will move toward its goal of a $20 p/h minimum wage by 2021... “Today we are announcing that the minimum wage will increase to $17.70 an hour on 1 April 2019." More>>

ALSO: