Mar 2015
Gas Distribution
Mar 2015
Jun 2017
Alex Stewart - Innovation Project Manager
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Network Innovation Allowance
GD - Mains Replacement
Gas Distribution Networks
The scope of this project is to design, development and assess the suitability for use by field trial of a small diameter camera and live inspection system to be used to survey both individual services and rising mains and ducts. This process will support risk assessment of our Riser replacement strategy.

The project has been delayed due to failure in initial off-site tests resulting in the design concept being altered. This failure also meant a rebuild of the initial prototype which was to be tested. These alterations have led to a delay in the project program and a 9 month extension is required to allow laboratory testing and field trials of the new prototype to be completed.

On completion of the prototype, offsite testing results presented an issue in the ability to negotiate bends on a longer camera length (greater than 10 metres). This has led to a redesign of the camera control system, thus resulting in a delay to the delivery of the prototype prior to field trials. In order to fully field trial and evaluate the system it is anticipated a project extension of a further 12 months (beyond the initial change) will be required. This would allow a full evaluation of the product on both below ground services and risers to be undertaken and allow SGN to understand the capabilities of the system and assess the potential uses and savings to be made.

The change is beneficial because it allows learning to be delivered as planned with no change to the project cost or potential net financial benefits.

The objectives of this project are to:

  1. Design equipment suitable to carry out internal survey visual inspection of live services and rising mains up to 20 meters in length and up to 2” in diameter.
  2. Design a suitable deployment system to safely allow live insertion of the inspection equipment via the customers meter control valve.
  3. Provide technical assessment of designs and construction and development of a prototype to carry out field trials.
  4. Assess the ability to survey up to 20m of service pipe through a maximum of two elbows and one tee at pressures up to 75mbar.
  5. Assess the ability to survey riser ducts.
  6. Assess the ability to survey small diameter mains 1.5” to 3” and 32mm to 63mm up to 5m in length.
  7. Produce all relevant  documentation, reports, presentations and work instruction seminars to share the learning from this project.
The success criteria for the project are to:

  • Design and assessment of both the inspection and launch systems
  • Maintain gas supplies whilst carrying out inspection on rising mains and services
  • Completion of successful field trials to test the equipment in a variety of scenarios to prove its performance.
  • Compile report detailing all technical findings and field trial outcomes
  • Improve decision making when planning service renewal activities
If successful the project will support our risk assessment when carrying out surveys on Network Risers, as well as improving performance and minimising interruption time and inconvenience to the customer when carrying our service replacement activities.