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Cable testing and diagnostics


Download Cable test and fault location equipment catalogue


The good care and life management of cables, of which cable testing figures prominently, can significantly improve a utility’s reliability indices. Therefore, a lot of attention is paid to this large subject.

As a means to organise what amounts to quite a bit of subject information, cable testing can be separated into categories reflecting the end goal, including:

  • Cable testing to prove the serviceability of the cable
  • Cable diagnostics to assess the cable’s integrity/health and thereby predict its long-term viability
  • Fault location to efficiently locate the specific failed part of the faulted cable

Cable testing and diagnostics
Cable testing and diagnostics may provide information about the cable’s global condition (e.g.,  the cable’s overall insulation system), and/or reveal localised problems, such as poor splices, terminations, or a specific, localised weak spot in the insulation. High voltage cable tests are carried out to spot any potential failures before they occur and cause disruption to the network.

Megger cable test equipment provides access to all of the information needed to make informed cable management decisions through the stages of the cable’s use, including:

After new cables have been installed to reveal any faults that may have been caused by transportation or installation
Following repair in order to reveal any additional weak points in the insulation other than at the fault repaired
Following repair to monitor the quality of the repair
Throughout the life of power cables, such as old PE/XLPE insulation cables to assess aging, particularly water-tree weak points

There are a variety of test methods that may be applied to high voltage cable. The most appropriate cable test will depend on factors such as cable type, the end goal of testing, and when you are testing.

Cable test equipment
Cables are a large capacitive specimen so cable test equipment can get quite large in order to meet testing requirements. Megger’s cable test solutions are comprehensive with a focus on portability, usability, and reliability. Our experience in testing and knowledge of cables and cable test methods fuel our designs, resulting in best-in-class and most efficient solutions.

For example, our revolutionary TDS - NT unit is a unique combined cable testing and diagnosis system that can be used to test cables to international standards. The system uses CR and damped AC waveform, which is the most effective way to test for PD. Both waveforms give results comparable to power frequency. Many other units on the market use sinusoidal waveform that in certain circumstances can give misleading results.

Our cable testers come with exceptional software that includes intuitive navigation and step-by-step walkthroughs. This means that PD testing can be done by linemen or technicians without a huge amount of training. With our software, testing is relatively easy to learn and interpret. The software that comes with our cable test equipment also has instantaneous reporting, which can save you both time and money.