How Engineered Mechanical Shunts Are Superior For Overhead Connector Repairs

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you believed one thing to be true and then found out years later that it wasn’t? For many years, experienced lineman and engineers believed that cutting out a splice on an overhead line and replacing it with two splices and a length of new conductor was better than shunting it with a ClampStar®. However, the above graph and adjacent IR image puts that falsehood to rest, once and for all!

As seen in the image above, prior to failure, the new splice, installed on new conductor, was running at about 150°C (50°C cooler than the 200°C conductor). In failure mode, the splice exceeded 300°C. Once the ClampStar® is installed, the splice cools down, not just back to 150°C, but more than three orders of magnitude lower, to 26.5°C as seen in the IR photo. The connector and the ClampStar® unit, continued operating at less than 50˚C for the remainder of the 2000 cycle test! It didn’t go back up to the original 150˚C of a brand new connector on a brand new conductor – with ClampStar in place the temperature of the failed connector was only 26.5˚C, and the Maximum temperature of the ClampStar was a mere 42.5˚C. The graph shows the temperature of the splice at each cycle – and the remaining results after the ClampStar® was installed!

Connectors installed on “used – weathered” conductor, WILL NOT have the longevity of a connector installed on “new – un-weathered” conductor.

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Well over a hundred major utilities have taken advantage of the ClampStar® solution with many of them using it to meet NERC and FERC N-1 contingencies. Thousands of ClampStars have been supplied for the last 10 years to utilities all across the U.S. as well as Canada, Australia, Central America and the Middle East. These utilities have found ClampStar® to be the safest and most economical solution when it comes to hardening the grid and extending the life of aging assets.

ClampStar® is an engineered mechanical shunt that significantly reduces whole-span wire replacement cost when installed over a failed splice or on a damaged portion of conductor to function as a permanent bypass electrical connection while maintaining tension in the conductor. ClampStar® eliminates replacement of overhead splices and repairs damaged bare conductors through an easy, quick, and permanent fix. ClampStar® is also used to increase the performance rating of existing splices and other connectors, clamps and fittings for the purpose of increasing line ampacity that may presently be limited by such devices.

ClampStar® units are used on distribution and transmission class applications up through 765kV for: Splices, Deadends, Suspension Clamps, Damaged Conductors, Emergency / Storm Restoration, OHSW and OPGW.

If, after reviewing the above information, you have any questions or need details, drawings or pricing, please don’t hesitate to contact us.  We would like to send one of our engineering technical specialists to meet with you and your engineers to discuss any questions you or they may have concerning any upcoming projects and share details regarding where ClampStar® could successfully be utilized. Please let us know how we can fit that into your schedule.

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