Omnisens, a provider of continuous, long-distance monitoring systems for energy cables, has received a substantial investment from SVC Ltd., an investment vehicle fully owned by Credit Suisse.
With many wind farms located more than 20 km (12 miles) offshore and in relatively shallow water less than 100 meters (328 feet) deep, the export cables, which transmit the power generated from the offshore substation to the onshore one, are exposed to many potential risks.
For example, existing pipelines and cables may cross the cable route; tidal activity may lead to seabed migration, which completely changes the environment where the cable is located; or fishing and marine activity may damage the cable with anchors and dropped debris.
Omnisens' Ditest, based on Brillouin-based distributed fiber-optic sensing, is able to resolve the temperature to within 1 degree C at each point along 50 km of power cable continuously from one interrogator, according to the company. This enables the operator not only to monitor the condition of the cable, but also to feed the temperature into a dynamic rating system so that the cable loading can be optimized, Omnisens adds.