Monday, August 20, 2012

August 2012 - Faults still coming in..

It has been a long time in between posts for me.. A busy time!

CPIT Electrical had nearly 100 applications for a 16-place midyear intake for the Pretrade Electrician class. We put two more classes on and are teaching 48 as a consequence. HOPEFULLY the housing rebuild will start soon (its shown no signs so far) and all these students will hopefully gain apprenticeships.

Steve from Connetics texted me on Friday night to say that he had to repair another 11kV cable fault on an earthquake damaged cable. It has been 18 months since the Feb 22 2011 Magnitude 6.3 earthquake and the damage to the underground network is still being repaired.

11kV PILC aluminium cable (with pen for scale)
The 11kV PILC (paper insulated, lead covered) with HDPE (high density polyethylene) came from Kotuku Crescent in Woolston. Once again the classic 'kink' appears in an underground cable.

In a media release, distribution network owner/operator Orion stated that from all earthquakes, the total repair bill will exceed NZ$70,000,000. Orion has also spent NZ$54,000,000 on capital projects since the Canterbury earthquakes started. This included building a new major substation in New Brighton to replace a quake-damaged substation which sank two metres into the ground in the 2011 February earthquake.

The liquefaction-sunk New Brighton substation

Mr Craig Boyce (Chairman of Orion) says that Orion is strongly committed to helping the rebuild of the city.
“We have earmarked $870m in spending over the next ten years, and we intend to stay flexible
on exactly where this money goes so that it supports whatever rebuilding plans are decided on.”

Orion has also taken ownership of the Papanui substation and associated lines from Islington substation as part of a long-term strategy to improve the efficiency and reliability of Christchurch’s electricity supply.
A new 'large high voltage'(I'm guessing 66kV) will also be installed to link St Albans substation to the Dallington substation, giving the Network better flexibility to supply Dallington and its surrounding suburbs.

Orion are also considering options to replace the 66kV temporary overhead line from Bromley to Dallington substations installed in April 2011 that replaced the earthquake-damaged 66kV oil-filled cables.

My pretrade Electrical Supply class are well on their way to completing the year successfully, this week going on a 'Generation tour' courtesy of Meridian to see Waitaki and Benmore hydro dams, the start of the Interisland HVDC link at Benmore, White Hills windfarm and the Meridian control centre. They're VERY excited (and so am I!)! They are at the Generation project stage of the course at the moment, so this will be extremely beneficial for them.

My pretrade Electrical Supply class with a photovoltaic system donated by Meridian for their power generation project. Left to right: Stephen Price, Electrical and Plumbing Line Manager, Karen Te Puke, TII Head of Department, Evan Lousley, Meridian Training manager, the class and me!

I'm also teaching part of a course for Cable Layers with employees from Connetics, Independent Lines Services, and Electricity Ashburton. I'm enjoying the competitive banter and sometimes learning from them as well! 

On a personal note, I presented at the start of the month twice; once 'Pecha Kucha' style at the ITF Annual Conference, and an hour-long presentation to help 'kick off' CPIT's Research month.
 For the CPIT presentation, I had the honour of presenting immediately after Dr. Mark Quigley from Canterbury University. He spoke about research Canterbury was undertaking with regard to the Canterbury earthquakes, and I spoke about how my Academic Study Leave experience was being integrated into student learning, and how successful this blog is! See below for my 'Pecha Kucha' presentation.

We're still fighting here in Christchurch to go forward. But as the author of this great article says, it's the people that are the future of Christchurch.

Take Care, All.