Urban Power Cable Monitoring using DAS & AI

AP Sensing, together with our partner Crony, completed a project in Serbia aimed at monitoring underground, urban HVAC power cables and detecting activities that pose a risk to power cables, such as road construction. Transmission System Operators (TSOs) are typically in need of a suitable and feasible solution that accurately detects and classifies Third Party Interference (TPI) events close to power cables. Often these power cables are buried within urban areas, under streets, bridges, and near construction sites.

AP Sensing’s Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) is designed and well-suited to detect TPI events by measuring small vibrations (strain changes) along the power cable. However, detecting TPI is a challenging task, as data from mechanical activities varies strongly depending on ground conditions and the tools that are used for, e.g., digging or hammering. Additionally, signals from other background events that look very similar to TPI signals may trigger unwanted alarms. To overcome these challenges, in this project AP Sensing utilized a combination of DAS technology and data processing based on Artificial Intelligent (AI) / Deep Neural Networks (DNN) for signal analysis and classification.