Our systems facilitate speed and safety in new and emerging industries while increasing efficiency and safety for those transitioning to a new future.
Connec systems provide a safer and more efficient alternative to on-site terminations and lightweight, value adding replacement for existing metallic connectors.
Improved safety, enabling remote operations, integrated fibre optic data transmission through the connector, collection and use of machine data, plug and play optionality, and improved fault diagnostics are common objectives across many industries that utilise medium-voltage electrical power.
Connec systems are an efficient alternative to traditional hard-wired terminations used in new modular grid connection substation control rooms, new distribution transformers, switchgear and kiosk type substations associated with the main power ring system.
Connec’s lightweight, integrated “Plug & Play” connector system provides significant benefits over current cable termination and joints and medium voltage connector systems used in the Defence base network.
New modular build main grid connection substation control rooms and new distribution transformers, switchgear and kiosk substations are improved in their construction and operational phase utilising Connec’s safer, lightweight, integrated “Plug & Play” connector system, when compared with traditional hard-wired termination connection methods.
The key features of Connec systems including; impedance matching, contiguous phase earths, multi-core, multi-channel, single mode fibre optic connectivity, weight reduction, and increased efficiency, which will facilitate the industries transition to safer, electrified, and operator free mining.
Oil & Gas
Connec’s “Plug & Play” system replaces traditional cable terminations and joints at motor, generator, transformer terminals and HV busbars with HV switchboards on drill ships and platforms.
Connec systems provide an alternative form of power termination at switchgear, and replacing standard single core cable connections with 3 phase power and integrated fibre optic construction.
Shore to Ship
The lightweight polymer construction and integrated fibre optic connection of Connec systems deliver time saving, OH&S benefits, and ease of utilisation to a rapidly developing market.
Offsite termination and testing, combined with a more rapidly deployable installation method provide significant safety benefits while reducing on site construction schedules and time.
See below frequently asked questions by our customers.
Can I install and use CONNEC products in explosive atmospheres?
Yes, Connec has a range of products up to 11 kV that are certified to both ANZEx and IECEx and are specifically designed for use in potentially explosive atmospheres such as underground coal mines. Non-Ex versions of the same products are also available for use in non-explosive atmospheres and utilise aluminium.
Are there different current ratings available?
CONNEC equipment has a common Ex current rating of 425 A across all products in both the bolted and restrained products. Higher current ratings in the order of 500 A can be provided for Non-Ex applications based on an understanding of electrical system loads and the associated operating environment. At the current time, CONNEC does not provide an 800 A connector system, having preferred to improve the design of the connector system rather than over-specify the current rating in order to compensate for potential flaws inherent within the connector.
Is CONNEC equipment compatible with other connector systems?
No. CONNEC (polymer) connector systems are Type-B, whereas other traditional (metallic) connector systems are Type-A. As a temporary solution to allow CONNEC (Type-B) equipment to be connected to traditional (Type-A) equipment, jumper cables have been provided for use, which are typically short cable sections pre-installed with a CONNEC (Type-B) connector on one end, and a traditional (Type-A) connector on the other. However CONNEC does not endorse combining its Type-B connectors with Type-A connectors as the introduction of a weak link in to the system where phase earths are corrupted, results in many other system advantages being compromised as a direct consequence.
Where are the Flame Paths located?
All CONNEC flame paths are located ‘internally’ (i.e. insulating tubes) as opposed to ‘externally’ (i.e. face flange). This design feature increases electrical safety via a decreased ignition risk, as well as improved system durability given that unlike Type-A connectors, minor damage to the face of a CONNEC connector during handling does not compromise the flame path.
How do you connect two bolted plugs together - do you use Phase Connector Pins (aka Duck Eggs)?
CONNEC have designed a single piece “coupler” to connect two bolted plugs together, thereby avoiding typical issues associated with the use of traditional phase connector pins (aka “Duck Eggs”). The CONNEC plug coupler is ‘keyed’ to ease alignment, lower insertion forces and prevent the inadvertent transposition of phases when making connections. It also provides independent (segregated) earth continuity for each phase and an overall screen to maintain cable geometry across the connector, this being specifically designed for VSD applications and is unique to CONNEC’s (Type-B) connector system.
Can you supply complete OEM Cable Assemblies?
Yes, CONNEC can provide OEM cable assemblies as an additional service if required. We do this via our network of cable shop partners to provide the necessary cable supply, fitting and testing. Our cable shop partners are AS3800 accredited and located in key geographic locations to improve logistics and reduce transport time/cost.
What sort of Warranty is offered?
CONNEC currently offer two types of warranty: Standard Warranty (12 months) for product purchases with no services; and Extended Warranty (48 months) for product purchases where services (e.g. Cable Assemblies) are also incorporated.
Can I purchase spare parts to repair equipment?
Yes, CONNEC offer a range of spares kits and individual spare parts specific to each product in each range (i.e. bolted and restrained).
Do you offer customised (bespoke) solutions?
Yes, CONNEC can design/prototype/manufacture items specific to a customer’s needs, either on a commercial basis for individual customers, or self-funded based on the size/scale/repeatability of the application. We always encourage active feedback from our customers and partners to both help solve industry problems and to continuously improve our products and services to suit.
Is the polymer body as strong as the metal bodies?
The polymer compounds used in CONNEC products are proprietary to CONNEC and have undergone and passed the same rigorous testing as for all other traditional metal body equivalents in order to pass ANZEx and IECEx certification requirements.
What is the voltage range of CONNEC products?
CONNEC products are currently designed for 1.1 kV, 3.3 kV, 6.6 kV and 11 kV operating voltages.
Are CONNEC products suitable for use in VSD applications?
Yes, both CONNEC bolted and restrained product ranges are specifically designed with independent (segregated) earth tubes to readily accommodate VSD applications without the need for system modifications, this including the most recent variant of our 3.3 kV restrained system that has been designed with the use of VSD’s for longwall AFC’s in mind.
Does the 11 kV Plug require filling with Encapsulant?
The phase tubes containing the phase conductor terminations are the only components that require filling with encapsulant. By design, CONNEC’s 11 kV plug body does not require filling with encapsulant, effectively reducing weight and the time/cost when fitting and/or maintaining cables, with the added benefit of making our 11 kV plug bodies re-usable due to this feature (less wastage). At an operating voltage of 25 kV, it will be necessary to utilise encapsulant in order to adequately mitigate partial discharge and/or corona effects.
Can you connect earth straps between plug connections?
Yes, there are threaded sections on the edges of the plug faces where earth straps may be connected.
What is the typical fit-off time to terminate a plug?
Fit-off times vary depending on the cable type and whether a steel-wired armour (SWA) gland is required. Based on our experience to-date, CONNEC Plugs can be fitted-off in as little as 1.5 hours and up to a maximum of 4 hours according to the type of plug and cable involved.
Does the claim of reduced SKU mean that parts are common between the products and/or ranges?
Yes, CONNEC products have been designed to use as many of the same parts (e.g. thimbles, cores, etc.) as possible so as to reduce the amount of spares inventory required.
Is the cable seal and cable retention separate?
Unlike Type-A connectors, Connec’s products incorporate independent cable retention and cable seal mechanisms, the collet assembly and cable gland being specifically designed as separate components so as to substantially reduce the potential for compromised ingress protection (IP) sealing, and/or internal connection integrity (thimbles).
What materials are used for the Ex and Non-Ex types?
As standard, Ex type uses manganese bronze, whereas Non-Ex type uses aluminium.
What size is the maximum cable size (CSA) you can use?
Bolted plugs can accommodate inductors up to 400mm2 and restrained plugs up to 240mm2.
Can your equipment be supplied pre-fitted with cable tails?
Yes, CONNEC can provide cable tails fitted to our products as a value-added service to save time and ease of installation if required.
Can I test that isolation has been successful using non-contact methods?
Unlike metallic Type-A connector systems, CONNEC’s bolted system with it polymer-based body allows testing for live/dead at the connector prior to compromising flamepaths as part of plug/coupler disengagement.
Do you offer training on your products?
Yes, CONNEC can provide remote or on-site training on all our equipment, along with supporting documentation including drawings and detailed instruction manuals. It is also an OEM responsibility under ISO9001 accreditation to only approve cable shops to work on our products that are deemed by CONNEC to be adequately trained and competent.
Can you provide lockable end covers for use during electrical isolation?
Yes, CONNEC has developed lockable end covers with this very purpose in mind, which supplement our standard end covers that are primarily used to protect the electrical connection surfaces when exposed following disengagement.
Are your plugs and couplers easier to connect in operational use than current Type-A products?
Over and above the significant weight reductions of our products, the engagement system has been substantially re-designed to improve ease of connection, including the incorporation of mechanical engagement devices on all our products.
Are your products smaller in size than Type-A equivalents?
As a result of incorporating contiguous phase earths into all of our connector systems, the diameter of our products is generally greater than Type-A equivalents. However as a result of making significant use of lighter polymer materials, our products are generally lighter than Type-A equivalents and are therefore easier to handle with a lower risk of injuries being sustained.
Do your products allow improved/faster cable fault detection and cable replacement in operations?
As a result of phase earths not being compromised at connection points, cable constriction is maintained “end to end” which allows cable faults to be located more efficiently than when using Type-A equivalent systems.
Are discounts offered for volume purchases?
Yes, CONNEC is prepared to negotiate on pricing for increased volumes as part of reaching mutually beneficial commercial deals with end-users.
Is CONNEC’s fibre-optic connector system a world’s first?
Whilst other connector systems offer a fibre-optic option, based on published information they are either based on multi-mode fibre and/or expanded beam (EB) connectors, or are located outside the connector system where they are far more prone to damage than inside the coupler. To the best of our knowledge, CONNEC’s fibre-optic connector system that incorporates single-mode fibre and physical contact connectors is a world’s first in medium-voltage multiple use connectors and has been designed to facilitate the high bandwidth, long transmission distance data comms that is becoming a critical part of current and future industrial systems.
Can CONNEC’s products be supplied with and without fibre-optic functionality?
Yes, the inclusion of fibre-optic functionality through CONNEC’s connectors is a customer option and is not a mandatory inclusion.
Can aluminium conductors be used with CONNEC’s products?
CONNEC’s current suite of products are solely approved for use with copper conductors. However CONNEC is aware that aluminium conductors are becoming more attractive in medium-voltage applications due to the ever-increasing demand for copper in other applications – e.g. windings for electric motors etc. As such, in line with its commitment to develop bespoke products based on customer needs, aluminium conductors will be incorporated into our product range as and when it is demanded of by one or more customers.
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