'START-UP' CHALLENGE: TRANSMISSION CONSTRUCTION AUTOMATION

We are looking for innovative solutions to optimise our electrical transmission facilities

Iberdrola — through its international startup programme - PERSEO — has launched a new Startup Challenge to find solutions that help optimise the construction of electrical transmission facilities, improving the efficiency and productivity of the different processes. Register before 2 November.

Iberdrola has more than 1.1 million kilometres of electric transmission and distribution power lines, distributed in the United States, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Spain. As part of this network there are more than 4,400 high-to-medium voltage substations and more than 1.5 million medium-to-low voltage distribution transformers, all built and operated to provide a high quality and reliable service to a total of 31 millions of electricity supply points.

Furthermore, the company is a pioneer in the digitization of its networks through the development of smart grids, the integration of storage solutions and the deployment of electric vehicle charging stations.

All this work is carried out in parallel to a great effort to minimize the environmental impact of these facilities.

THE PROBLEM

More transmission networks are needed to facilitate the energy transition from fossil fuels to renewables and transport this green energy to the load centres and customers. In order to minimize the impact of these new facilities on both the environment and cost to consumers it's essential we seek out innovative and efficient ways to improve our construction techniques for both transmission substations and lines.

In delivering these much-needed assets in a timely and effective manner reducing the planning and construction schedules can be a huge benefit to both generators and customers and ways to compress the program would be helpful in make our proposals as attractive as possible.

These new facilities are built within a regulatory competition framework, where different operators compete to build and operate the facilities in the most efficient way.

Because of this, the construction of these facilities play a very important role in establishing which operators are the most competitive, resulting in optimal construction schedules and efficient CAPEX (capital expenditure), always guaranteeing correct operation and maintenance once the installation is in service.

WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR

We are, therefore, looking for proposals that can:

 Extend construction work hours — through the use of automation and robotics, for example — up to 24 hours.

 Be based on automation of construction processes that the efficiency or safe working environment of the crews.

 Minimise the impact of pandemics or other events that may restrict crew access and activity at construction sites.

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Specifically, the proposals received must refer to the improvement in times and CAPEX of at least some of the following construction activities for electric Transmission facilities, with special attention to those related to civil works:

Substations  

 Civil works:

  • Substation platform construction
  • Foundations (on site/pre-fac)
  • Cable trenches

 Above ground works (BOP):

  • Cable laying
  • Structures erection

Lines (overhead/underground)  

 Civil works:

  • Access roads / pad construction
  • Towers/Poles foundations
  • Cable trenches/conduit

 Above ground works:

  • Towers/Poles erection
  • Stringing:
    • pilot wire, conductors, earth wire, OPGW, multi phase conductors
    • spacers, dampers and deflectors (eliminate any basket work)
  • Cable laying: multi phase conductors

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Transmission Construction Automation

 

The proposals will be analysed based on criteria of:

 Scalability

 Replicability

 Ease of implementation

 Reduction of costs and construction times

The analysis of the offers will be carried out by experts in the Transmission development and construction group.

THE PRIZE

The selected project will be developed in collaboration with the technical specialists from the Iberdrola Network area.

The prize will consist of us signing a collaboration and test agreement with PERSEO - International Startup Programme and/or with any other relevant Iberdrola group company, who will assume the costs and provide the winner with the necessary technical support, giving access to infrastructures and real data to test the solution.

If the assay or test of the concept is satisfactory, Iberdrola may offer the winner the opportunity to scale up the solution by means of commercial agreements. In addition, Perseo may consider investing in the participant.

If you have any questions, please contact IberdrolaChallenge@iberdrola.es.

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