Dec 2016
Gas Distribution
Remote circumferential pipe cleaning tool
Dec 2016
Mar 2018
Northern Gas Networks and National Grid Gas Distribution
Scott Kitchingman
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Network Innovation Allowance
Gas Distribution Networks
ALH Systems for a number of years have been leaders in long handled tooling (LHT) for the repair of joints and have developed further tooling for a range of other applications such as camera and mainspray launch. It is anticipated that the pipe cleaner will be incorporated on to the current LHT making it easily adapted for use in the field using existing fleets of equipment and therefore limiting cost impact on implementation. The cleaning tool will incorporate a mechanism to allow it to clean the underside of main from either side of the main and therefore manual handling issues will be minimised.

Trelawny Tools are a sister company to ALH Systems within the Indutrade Group and have been a manufacturer of surface preparation equipment for over 60 years. Trelawny has been offering a range of equipment for the preparation of steel surfaces to industry and with this experience will adapt an ‘off the shelf’ product for the purpose required. Under its designated trade mark Vibro-Lo™, Trelawny tools are designed to keep vibration levels to a minimum and this will be implemented in to the integrated final product. Adding to the ‘Tool & Vacuum System’ (TVS) as an alternative to blast cleaning, for the containment of dust & debris, it is anticipated that minimal additional PPE will be required.

Stage 1 - Design and Development, Prototype manufacture and Internal Testing: Finalising the design concepts and developing detailed manufacturing drawings. Once design has been signed off a unit will be manufactured in house to allow our field engineers to test the system under controlled conditions. (12 Weeks)


Stage 1a - (if required) - Modifications: Modify design to eliminate issues found during prototype and testing phases.  Remanufacture required new parts and retest, iterate until solution is acceptable. (4 Weeks if required)


Stage 2 - Field Trials: With the GDN trial the equipment on 3 sites to ensure their acceptance of the equipment (8 weeks)


Stage 3 – Approval and Network acceptance (2 weeks).

Successful completion of the project will have delivered the development and field testing of a new mechanical method of cleaning metallic mains utilising long handled tooling to a degree whereby appropriate repair clamps can be attached to the host main.

The product would be at a point where it could be commercially available and ready for implementation within the network.

Successful implementation of the product will ensure that the GDN will be able to apply a safe, mechanical operation to clean a host main to enable the operative to apply a repair clamp through core and vac / small ex working.