Oct 2012
Electricity Transmission
Tablet interface for a SF6 mass flow top-up device
Oct 2012
Mar 2014
National Grid Electricity Transmission
Adam Baker & Carl Johnstone
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Network Innovation Allowance
Environmental and Asset Management
This project will focus on SF6 top-ups and will be to replace the current interface on SF6 mass flow meters with a tablet interface which will become the one point of contact for asset management equipment onsite. This interface will control the mass flow meter during a top-up and collecting information on what asset is being topped-up. It will also be capable of sending the top-up data back to SAM (Strategic Asset Management) system automatically instead of the operator entering the data into the system manually via a script on there laptop.

To create a sustainable template and process to reduce total cost on a solution that will use ‘off the shelf’ technology and open protocols with the intention that it will be scalable across multiple technologies. This project will also provide understanding of the methodology to indentify potential challenges and benefits associated with mobile data capture of test equipment. 

Avoiding costs in replacement of mass flows by increasing the longevity of existing mass flows with an upgrade to a tablet interface. If the company decided to replace the existing units they would look to replace 20% of the units per year and if these were upgraded instead of replaced this could save around £390,000 annum. These numbers are based on an engineering estimate of £15,000 per new unit as appose to £2,000 for an upgrade and a total fleet of 150 units.

As part of National Grid longer term plan to replace OITH devices on site, this project could help influence what device is chosen. This could then help to reduce cost as one device could then be used for multiple tasks, and the condition monitoring devices could be less complex as the interface is already onsite.

The project benefits above are based on replacement of the existing 150 units on the system, if the company upgraded the units instead of replaced them, we could save £390k p/a