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Projects in Spain




Highly efficient smart system for inspecting grounding mechanisms at transmission towers.

Measuring electrical systems and particularly grounding systems is a notoriously dynamic and complicated process, making it hard to conduct analysis and diagnostic work. This enormous complexity requires innovative new models to provide added flexibility and evolvability.

The TABÓN project offers a brand new technology for verifying, inspecting and predicting power line performance, specifically in relation to grounding systems, so as to improve the process of measuring ground resistance while enhancing management efficiency.

To accomplish this wider goal, the following specific objectives have been successfully completed in relation to the main activities envisaged under the project:

  • Investigation into the correlation between step and touch voltage values and ground resistance. The analysis has revealed a correlation, shown by the relationship between Kc and Kr.
  • Development of a smart, distributed, dynamic and self-adaptive platform that will enable measurement systems to be modelled and measured and tower models defined to calculate ground resistance. The result is a ground-breaking technology that will improve distributed power generation. A system has been developed for managing power lines (installing new lines and decommissioning and modifying existing lines), managing towers (installing new structures and decommissioning and modifying existing structures), filtering towers and lines, showing information on both lines and towers, and generating samples for a line selected within the system.



Tool for determining the age of medium-voltage cable in underground power distribution lines.

The overriding objective of the MATUSALEN project is to develop an advanced interoperable technological solution featuring cutting-edge hardware and an innovative expert system for estimating the wear of medium-voltage cables found in underground power grids, thus improving the way the assets are managed and allowing for an optimum roll-out of future smart grids.

The project focuses on the ageing and wear of both cables and instrumentation (sensors used to run system self-diagnostics and provide historical data) within the smart grid and will ultimately offer an innovative one-stop solution for managing medium-voltage electrical assets. The technology can easily be exported and adapted to international power grids.

The project envisions the following specific objectives:

  • To acquire further insight into the state of cable insulation and the insulation of other facility installations, as well as factors that influence their useful life.
  • To investigate and develop new interoperable systems for monitoring and diagnosing the age of the power grid.
  • To design an advanced methodology and an innovative expert system for measuring the useful life of cables compatible with the architecture and roll-out of existing and future smart grids.
  • To improve the asset management strategies of power distribution companies, enabling them to lower their operating and maintenance costs while establishing suitable technical patterns and standards for operating their assets.
  • To ensure greater observability and control capacity over the power distribution network as a whole, through new technological solutions and tools that can efficiently process information on the state of the grid and make it available to the centre of the distribution system operator.

The project is expected to be completed in 2017 and is currently under development through the following activities:

  • Analysing the degradation of both cables and ancillary components on medium-voltage power lines.
  • Improving the monitoring, oversight and diagnosis of medium-voltage components of smart grids.
  • Specifications for designing the expert system to enhance asset management and development of a demo version.


Development of materials for power line insulators and electrical switchgear capable of operating in extreme conditions and to ensure a long useful life in medium-voltage systems.

The general objective of the project is to obtain new insulators for high-voltage lines and switchgear with improved properties, making them fit for extreme operating conditions and environments in which components age and degrade more rapidly. This will also help improve quality of supply and the efficiency of power distribution networks by reducing the number of outages affecting polymer line insulators.

To accomplish this goal, the following activities are under way:

  • Establishing accurate assumptions for ageing mechanisms so as to acquire an in-depth understanding of the degradation phenomena that occur over the life of an insulator.
  • Investigating and obtaining new insulating materials with improved properties (silicons for insulator fins).
  • Developing and validating prototypes with improved properties through an experimental characterisation procedure that tests the materials under severe operating conditions to provide an accurate picture of their real and effective durability.

The project is expected to be completed in 2017 and will lead to substantial improvements in the quality of the components installed across the grid. Measurable short-term benefits include improved materials that will outperform traditional silicons under trial conditions, while the mid-term benefits will include a reduction in line insulator outages as part of the strategy of continuously improving quality of service.



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