Dr David Flynn of Heriot-Watt University has led a successful project in partnership with the University of Greenwich and Scottish and Southern Energy, concluding a one year £194,000 phase 1 investigation into the development of a system for subsea cable condition monitoring. 

Two integrated parallel activities where undertaken as part of this investigation (1) the development of a first generation Prognostic Health Management (PHM) algorithm for predicting the Remaining Useful Life of subsea power cables, and (2) the development and demonstration of a packaged sensing component, based on the customisation of commercial sensing and communications technology, that captures in-situ cable and environmental data. The results from this initial study have shown that the integrated algorithms and sensing technology can accurately predict the movement and degradation of the cable in the locality of the packaged sensors on the cable. Extending this capability to the whole cable will provide industry with the capability to source vital data and ensure an accurate prediction of the condition of the cable and hence influence future maintenance and logistic decisions.  

A phase 1.5 project, design for reliability, began on the 1st of April in partnership with Scottish and Southern Energy. This £130,000 8 month project, will involve researchers from Heriot-Watt working alongside colleagues at the University of Greenwich to develop further the PHM capability in the form of desktop tool to enable, design for reliability and remaining useful life assessment of subsea power cables. This work will also look to deliver a new industrial standard for subsea power cables.