EA Technology has launched an instrument for identifying defects in live cables of distribution voltages. The CableData Collector works by testing for Partial Discharge (PD) activity: small discharges, which result in damage to the cable, and if left unattended will lead to insulation failure.

EA Technology Commercial Director Neil Davies said: “Measuring PD activity is a very accurate way of assessing the condition of cables and their likelihood of failure and outage. The ability to test cables without the need to de-energise them is a real benefit. Essentially, they can be
fixed before they fail and cause expensive outages.”

The instrument quickly detects PD activity in live cables by measuring radio frequency currents. It works with most types of single and three phase insulated cables at distribution voltages, up to several miles/kilometres in length. Information about PD activity is recorded by the CableData Collector hardware and can be sent to EA Technology for expert analysis. Alternatively, users can buy EA Technology’s software package to perform their own data analysis. In either case, they will have access to clear reports on cables affected by PD activity and recommendations for remedial action.

CableData Collector instruments are supplied as complete, ready-to-use kits, with Radio Frequency Current Transformers (RFCTs), cabling, USB-powered data collection unit and carry case, together with optional software, training and factory technical support. Kits are also available for rental, or EA Technology engineers can provide cable testing as a site service, anywhere in the world.