Excavating and Repairing Low Voltage Underground Networks


Underground cables are a vital component of modern day living. Today, underground cable networks are used extensively through-out the world to power a range of quintessentially post-COVID activities including remote working, home cooking, and streaming your favourite shows on Netflix.

The idea of underground cables is not an overly novel concept, with subterranean power transmission dating back centuries. However, recent technological improvements have made underground cable infrastructure drastically more accessible, with lower likelihoods of storm damages and service connection issues drastically reducing operating costs compared to more traditional overhead cable technologies. Many cities throughout Europe and the Americas are now gradually transitioning away from ugly overhead cable eyesores towards more efficient underground alternatives.

But why doesn’t the world simply tear out their overhead cables and move things underground today? Well, a major drawback facing a global underground cable revolution lays in the rather expensive, inefficient, and time-consuming process of repairing cable issues when they do arise. Underground cables will gradually degrade through time, making technical and mechanical issues more likely to occur. Current technologies are insufficient at quickly and cost effectively repairing affected cable sections.

The seeker is looking for an efficient technical solution which can effectively excavate and repair low voltage underground cable networks with minimal above-ground footprint. The solution will not be required to locate the affected cable sections within the underground cable network - special electronic devices do that bit!

The solution to this challenge will contribute towards the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number 9, which aims to build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialisation, and foster innovation. The SDGs cover a spectrum of calls for action which strive to end poverty and other deprivations whilst maintaining sustainable economic development, improving public service, and preserving the natural environment for future generations.

So you think you might have the solution?...

The seeker wants to gain ideas and inspiration from all corners of society. This means that you could be a college student, university professor, an energy start-up, a multi-national industrial company, or even just someone who had a crazy idea on a morning jog.

Open innovation is open for all and we want to hear from you.

Register now for further challenge information and turn your idea into a reality!