Thursday, 19 November 2015

The Benefits of Wind Turbines

Wind Energy
Did you know that the UK home turbines could be taking advantage of the 40% of wind energy that’s available in the whole of Europe? Now you do! Using home turbines could help to save more money and generate electricity from a renewable energy source, which the UK has a lot of.

There are many additional benefits to wind power on top of doing your little bit for the environment. Below we have listed a number of advantages for you to consider:

-          It provides a free energy source, with plenty throughout the UK to go around.

-          You will reduce your Carbon Footprint, as this type of renewable energy will not release any harmful carbon dioxide.

-          High electricity bills will be a thing of the pass, as once you have installed your turbine the electricity that comes from it is completely free!

-          Store generated electricity in batteries in preparation for a day when there is no wind.

-          Make additional income by selling the electricity you do not use to the National Grid to help others.

There are a great number of positive attributes regarding turbines, but getting one for your home may appear absurd to some. The two most frequently used methods used to harness renewable energy today are solar panels and wind turbines. Wind farms appear in coastal and other open spaces where there isn’t an abundance of trees or buildings to absorb the wind, before it hits the turbine.

Let’s rewind and explain what a wind turbine is. A wind turbine is effectively a windmill-style device that converts the kinetic energy that comes from the wind, into usable mechanical energy. You may hear or read them being described as ‘wind chargers’ or ‘wind generators’.  They have developed greatly over the years, but the ones you see today can also be seen with both horizontal and vertical axis.

Some new built housing estates now come complete with a wind farm in order to provide every home on the estate with a renewable energy source. Some houses will continue to vary to another and will also include other energy sources such as solar panels.

Although a great energy source and cost-effective solution to generating electricity for your home, many will argue the point they are not an attractive device to have in view of your home. Pretty or not however, wind turbines are doing a vital job and should not be opposed by anyone with a conscience. 

Photo by 'Jondaar_1' / License

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Construction Projects in North Wales 2015

North Wales Prison
North Wales and the North West region have undergone some major work throughout the year of 2015, with a number of truly great projects under completion from civil engineering, defence and groundwork contractors.

North Wales Prison, Wrexham

Although an official name for the new ‘super’ prison has not been announced yet, the prison is already well underway towards completion for its deadline in 2017. Jennings Building & Civil Engineering Contractors have been involved in the construction of the prison from the get go, achieving a substructure contract for the groundwork contractors.

The prison is set to be the largest in the UK and second largest in Europe, whilst boosting the economy by creating 1,000 jobs. The prison site on Wrexham Industrial Estate has already pumped more than £19 million into the local economy.

The prison itself is being designed with a ‘rehabilitative culture’ at its heart, which ranges from specialist training of staff to education, employment and recreation. It is also known that half of all labour for the site will be recruited locally, together with 100 apprenticeships and 500 work placement days per year.

Tetney Sealine Replacement Project, Grimsby

Tetney Sealine transports Crude Oil via a monobuoy in the Humber Estuary. The oil is then pumped through the subsea pipeline to tank storage at Tetney oil terminal before being piped to the Humber refinery for processing. Refined products are exported by ship from Immingham dock and transported to inland customers by road, rail and pipeline.

The site is only accessible by boat, taking 25 minutes to transport plant and operatives of the project to the site on a daily basis. The Yorkshire Lady dive vessel transports 20 pieces of heavy plant to install the on shore section of the 1,200mm diameter, 4km long pipeline.

Aldi, Flintshire

Another Aldi foodstore has been underway throughout 2015 and is opening in Buckley, Flintshire. The super foodstore aims to open 65 stores per year, giving a total of 1000 by 2021. Aldi are currently the 6th largest food retailer in the UK, with realistic ambitions of increasing their UK market share.

There have been a number of great projects, with more on their way to the North Wales & North West region.

Monday, 2 November 2015

4 Reasons to Choose a Cable Harness

Cable Harness Solutions
A cable harness, also known as cable assembly, is an assembly of cables which transmit signals or electrical power. The cable industry, particularly within the harness sector, has grown rapidly for the past five years and continues to grow further.

Increased achievements in technology have contributed to this growing success within the industry, with advanced industrial machines enabling full customisation of a cable harness. This ensures that the customer gets a fully customisable assembly of cables that meet their specific application requirements.

If this is not a good enough reason to assume a cable assembly is the right choice for your application, then here are four more reasons why you should select one.

They prevent disasters. The recent advancements in harness technology have largely been driven by the automation industry particularly. The largest portion of the harness market is dedicated to meeting the specifications of every type of vehicle currently being manufactured today. The length, fuse configuration and appropriate terminal end connectors are just a few of the things that need considering to ensure the vehicle runs smoothly.

Improved safety. The harness component of a cable harness is the mechanism that prevents loose cables and wires inside the vehicle from being damaged. All machinery has multiple wires inside it to connect power generating components to enable it to function properly. The harness is what bundles all these components together, protecting them from heat, vibration, stretching, abrasion and many other environmental conditions.

Quicker installation. The design of cable assemblies are constantly being refined in their design to ensure the installation and manufacturing process is efficient. Nowadays, rather than needing to install one cable at a time, a large number of wires can be installed quickly and easily using a pre-assembled harness.

Better performance. There are various types of harnesses you can select, which are tailored for your application: domestic household appliances to large industrial machinery. There are a number of standard cable harnesses used which span several industries. However, you can choose a custom harness to ensure you get exactly what you need. This ensures safety, improved performances and more reliability for the end product.

Cost effective. Although a custom cable harness can be costly, purchasing everything from one manufacturer can save you money in the long run. From the cables, components and the custom cable assembly service, all of this combined under one roof is better than having three separate suppliers. 

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Construction Industry Continues to Grow Throughout 2015

Fugro Building
Construction in North Wales is currently on a high as results are shown in the latest Construction Trade Survey for 2015. The survey shows that construction firms reported an eighth consecutive quarter of growth in activity during the first quarter of 2015.

Large contractors, civil engineers and construction companies are all enjoying this successful growth, with further expansion anticipated throughout the rest of the year. Dr Noble Francis, the Economics Director at the Construction Products Association, provided his thoughts on the survey and said, “Activity rose in the first quarter of 2015 compared to a year earlier according to 50% of contractors, on balance. Furthermore, increases in orders and enquiries indicate that the construction industry’s longest expansionary streak in six years is set to continue over the next 12 months.

“Increased activity was led by the private housing sector, in which 54% of firms, on balance, reported a rise in output.  Increased output was also reported in private commercial, the largest construction sector, where 23% of firms, on balance, reported rising volumes of offices and retail work.

“This momentum is set to continue, as it was in the private housing and commercial sectors that contractors registered growth in order books in Q1. Specialist contractors and SMEs also reported a noticeable upturn in new enquiries in the quarter.”

The survey provided some key results for the first quarter of 2015, in comparison to a year ago. These include:

-          50% of building contractors reported that construction output rose.
-          23% of building contractors reported that private commercial output rose.
-          9% of contractors reported a rise in orders for private housing.
-          25% of contractors state orders in the private commercial sector increased.
-          54% of building contractors report that the private housing output rose.

The Construction Trade Survey proves there has been great success for the beginning of 2015, but also continues to increase throughout the rest of year as we enter into the last quarter of 2015.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

What Does An Air Filter Do & Why Do You Need Them?

Air Filters
Air filters are not just machines for purifying the air in homes for germ phobic people. They are actually essential to your car functioning properly.

Even those who don’t take a keen interest in the inner working of their car and know little about them might recall being told that it is important to change your car’s air filter regularly.

This is because it will help your car’s performance, make it run more efficiently and therefore save you a bit of money.

Air filters keep your engine clean and free of debris. This aids the engine to function optimally and means better gas mileage.

If you need to buy a new air filter or filter kits for your engine check out GTS Components. They specialise in air filters, fuel filters, hydraulic filters and filter kits for all kinds of automotive equipment. Their online shop means its fast, efficient and easy to buy your new air filter.

An air filter is an essential part of the fuel supply system in your car. Without an air filter, the fuel system would quickly become filled with insects, leaves, and other debris, in addition to the same fine particles that can obstruct human lungs. The clogged system would be unable to function.

The paper air filter is the most common air filter in cars you will come across for personal use. These are cheap and installation is fairly straight forward. Before paper air filters we used oil bath filters, but these functioned by restricting air flow, causing particles to settle in a pool of oil. You may still encounter this type of air filter but mainly in antique cars. The foam air filter is more expensive than a paper one but much better at filtering dust, therefore if you drive in dusty, dirty conditions regularly you will want to opt for a foam filter. They are perfect for farm equipment. Cotton filters are a kind of filter that can be washed and reused rather than replaced.

For maximum performance and gas mileage, the air filter should be changed or cleaned at least once a year. This suggested time interval varies depending on how many miles are driven yearly and the type of environment one typically drives and parks in. Cars that are driven on dusty dirt roads and in rural wooded areas need to have the filter changed more frequently.

When purchasing a new air filter for your engine do not become confused with a cabin filter as this is only for filtering the air inside the passenger area not the engine.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

New Project Set to Provide an 85-Year Weather Forecast

Researchers are currently developing an hourly weather forecast for the next 85 years, which will help to predict extreme conditions such as heat waves and cold snaps throughout the UK.

The University of Bath and Exeter University are leading the project and say it aims to help scientists and engineers understand how building designs react to different weather conditions. The predicted weather conditions will be forecast until 2100 and will represent typical weather and events such as lightning strikes, rain, flooding and tornadoes.

Over 1,200 types of building designs will be tested throughout the project in order to help establish how external temperature, wind and sun can cause issues for people living inside. Construction companies in North Wales, the North West and across the UK will be given an insight into the way buildings will then need to be designed in the near and distant future.

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council have awarded the University of Bath a grant of £1million. Professor David Coley at the university mentioned the fact that over 70,000 people died across Europe in 2003 due to a widespread heatwave. The cause of the deaths was not related to the extreme conditions along however, but also linked to the designs of the buildings not being resilient enough to cope with them and protect occupants.

An additional worry is what may happen to homes if the energy grid was disrupted during a cold snap, where people are left in rapidly cooling homes. The new 85-year forecast will provide an understanding of weather events in terms of duration and temperature, as well as the implications of such an event on a building and its residents.

A significant part of this project will be to create an hourly time series of predicted weather over the duration of 85 years, reaching the end of the century. Another part of the project will then be focused on how to ensure buildings become sustainable. Climate change will have a significant impact on the UK building design and energy use in the near future. 

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Difference Between Power Cables & Control Cables

Cables are of various types and varieties, with each cable designed to perform a specific function. The performance and durability of cables depend on the quality of its raw materials. Each individual cable has a distinguished construction, which differentiates it from others.

Power and control cables are often confused for one another, but there are certain elements of each cable that set them apart.

Control cables as their name suggests, send signals to control the functioning of equipment. This type of cable allows distribution of data or signals that have low voltage. They are designed specifically for automation controls, with a copper conductor that is enveloped in galvanised steel braid.

One similarity the two cables have is the variety of cables available in their product range. Control cables have a number of specifically designed cables suited to various automation and computer applications. They are generally twisted in pairs and possess a balanced shielding that reduces interference.

Power cables on the other hand transfer both high energy and low energy from the source to the equipment. They are specifically designed to best suit active and neutral environments and bear a thick outer sheath compared to ordinary control cables. The external sheath of power cables, coupled with its great strength and protection enables the cables to transfer high volume of energy without any tension or strain.

Power cables in comparison to control cables, have a unique colour code system that distinguishes the high voltage carriers from their low voltage counterparts. Control cables on the other hand offer superior resistance to interference, making them the ideal cable for sending low voltage signals.

If you require further assistance with the help of choosing the right cable for your industrial application, be sure to contact Lapp’s dedicated sales team who will be happy to assist you with all enquiries. 

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Increasing Demand for Civil Engineer Contractors in the UK

Civil Engineering Contractors
Civil Engineering Contractors in North Wales, the North West and the rest of the UK will be in high demand in the next five years, but despite the shortage of skills women still account for less than 10% of the sector’s workforce.

June 23rd was the second annual National Women in Engineering Day, which was organised in a bid to focus attention on the wide-ranging career opportunities available to girls and to help develop a passion for engineering in future generations of women.

The Royal Academy of Engineering suggests that we will need more than one million new engineers and technicians by 2020. In order to provide this number, we will need to double the current number of annual engineering graduates and apprentices.

The UK has the lowest proportion of women in engineering in Europe. However, it is important to understand that in order to tackle this crisis, inspiring girls to pursue a career in engineering is becoming imperative.

National Women in Engineering Day is the brainchild of the president of the Women’s Engineering Society, Dawn Bonfield. Bonfield saw the 95th anniversary of the organisation last year, as an opportunity to celebrate the work that women do in engineering and to encourage more girls to enter the profession.

The bid to increase awareness and engagement for the National Day exceeded expectations over social media, with their design hashtag - #NWED – trending above both Wimbledon and the World Cup.

Although great efforts are being made to address the skills shortage of civil engineer contractors in North Wales, the North West and the rest of the UK, it is mainly boys who are being targeted. However, the civil engineering sector is one of the most appealing in comparison to other industries.

According to EngineeringUK, mechanical engineering has the lowest proportion of female applicants which ranged from 6.4% in 2009/10 to 8.4% in 2012/13. During the same period, the proportion of female applicants to aerospace engineering declined to 7.6%. The proportion of applicants in general engineering and civil engineering was similar in 2012 and 2013, at approximately 16.4% and 16.5% respectively.

The question is, what is it about civil engineering that means it bucks the trend so dramatically? Many say that it is because it is easy to see how the work of civil engineering contractors improves the lives of so many people.

Atkins led a careers research study, which showed that four in ten women in the industry became an engineer through a family connection such as a father or friend who were also an engineer. This highlights the importance of having a role model, as for women this might give an awareness of what civil engineers actually do and can break down the stigma that civil engineering is only for men. 

Friday, 3 July 2015

Hygienic Cable Glands Are the Way Forward For the Food, Drinks & Packaging Industry

SKINTOP Cable Glands
The food and beverage industry has some very strict hygiene rules set in place and all for good reasons, but one simple way to ensure your equipment is abiding by these rules is to ensure you have the right cable connections.

Lapp has a wide selection of hygienic cable glands available to choose from, ensuring there is a product for you, your industry and industrial applications. One important feature to consider when either designing products for this industry, or selecting your desired product for use in it, is to have smooth, stainless steel surfaces.

Lapp Group’s SKINTOP Inox is a hygienic cable gland which fundamentally provides everything you need for the use in the food, drinks and packaging industry. Standard cable glands when expected closely have exposed threads, tiny openings and protruding surface features, making them less than ideal from a hygiene perspective.

The SKINTOP Inox is made from food-grade 316L stainless steel and features enclosed, sealed threads. Its exterior surfaces have no gaps or protruding features that can trap particulate or microbes. In addition, the number of tooling flats has been reduced to two, which blend seamlessly with the surrounding housing surfaces.  Lastly, these hygienic cable glands feature integral food-grade silicone O-rings for IP 68 protection at 5 bar.

Besides from their outward appearance and internal seals, the new hygienic glands meet the same high performance and ease-of-use standards as other SKINTOP products. This includes operating temperatures ranging from -30° to 100°c, a wide clamping range of 7 – 13mm with M20  x 1.5 threads and is compliant with ISO 14159 standards for machinery hygiene.

The very first model of this range was first introduced later last year, with alterations being made to create the ideal cable gland for use in one of the strictest industries for hygiene.

If you wish to find out more about this particular product, other available items which may be better suited to your industrial application or to contact Lapp directly regarding any other queries, please call 020 8758 7800 or send an email to:

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Aeroderivative & Stationary Gas Turbines: What's the Difference?

Gas Turbines
The use of small and lightweight gas turbines with high efficiencies is vital to the oil and gas industry, as well as to the growing field of distributed power generation. There are two varieties of gas turbines which you can choose from for your chosen field: stationary industrial gas turbines and aero-derivative gas turbines.

Aero derivative turbines are much more compact in their design and a lot lighter in comparison to the stationary turbines, as the stationary version can way up to three times more. Aero derivative turbines are easy to transport, extremely robust and capable of reaching full speed in next to no time.

This type of gas turbine is used in the field of aviation and is based on turbine engines for aircraft. They can be found operating on the high seas, in the middle of desserts or even in freezing cold regions. These types of engines were originally designed for use under extreme conditions for flights that take place at altitudes of over ten kilometres, hence the quality and robust design.

In order for the turbines to be of such high quality, the inspection and testing of hose assemblies and industrial hoses is crucial to ensure safety at all times.

Aero derivative turbines aim for higher efficiency, short starting time and rapid load changes without any significant impact on lifetime, which makes their design different from stationary industrial turbines. Additionally, they are characterised by optimised weight, modest space requirements and very brief inspection and service times.

Although the quality features and overall design is far more impressive and preferable than that of the stationary variation, the cost of all these features can be dear. The price increases by approximately 20-25% more than stationary turbines of similar output. In exchange for the high price, they can be started more frequently at around four to five times more often, from switched-off to maximum speed. Therefore this provides many benefits.

The secret that lies behind these advantages is the way the aero derivative turbine is built, materials used and the cooling technology. Many parts are made of aluminium, titanium or nickel alloys which go on to create a lightweight machine. The thinner walls results to the turbine warming up quicker.

There are up to three shafts in an aero derivative gas turbine and since these are not mechanically linked, they can be operated at different speeds. When you combine all these factors together, it is very noticeable that aero derivative turbines are much more efficient and worthy of their value as opposed to stationary turbines, hence the reason they are becoming more popular within the industry. 

Thursday, 25 June 2015

New Cable Standards for Wind Turbines

Wind Turbines
There have been some changes to the wiring of wind turbines over the last year, as electrical systems on large wind turbines are now subject to a new standard. This standard is the UL 6141 which could see some drastic changes to cabling practices.

Both new and refurbished wind turbines that generate more than 500 kilowatts have to follow these standards. This new standard also proposes strict limits on the use of appliance-wiring material (AWM) within and between key generator subsystems.

These limits come from a requirement that all accessible wiring must either be enclosed in a raceway, or rated for tray cable usage. The new standards could affect different wind turbine subsystems, and here are a few example of how:

The Gearbox – There is no UL component standard specifically for gearboxes, therefore the UL 6141 will apply to the wiring for these components which relates to heaters and PT 100 temperature sensors as an example.

Generators – The existing UL component standard for generators permits AWM cables under limited circumstances. In order to use AWM in generator wiring, a ready-to-connect cable with connector must be set in place. This should also be fitted with a grounding cable within the generator itself. Since neither of these options is common with wind turbine generator manufacturers in today’s industry, UL listed cable products will likely be the safest design strategy now UL 6141 has arrived.

Tower – UL 6141 applies to towers as there is no existing UL for these. This clearly calls for listed products for cables that run vertically up the tower, including those for power, control signals, lighting and hoists.

While UL 6141 won’t necessarily outlaw AWM in wind turbine subsystems, a preference for listed cable products comes through loud and clear in the new standard. It remains to be seen whether electrical inspectors will accept AWM cable when it is known that the intent of the UL 6141 would be the use of listed cable products.

Design engineers working on new turbine projects may want to keep this preference for products in mind. Using listed products only will not only result in more durable wiring but will also ensure compliance when UL 6141 goes into effect.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Chester Catering Equipment

It is the summer season and there are plenty of busy restaurants in Chester city who are having their greatest foot fall at this time of year. Everyone is out and about shopping, visiting tourist attractions and having nights out in the city with this fine summer weather.

That means the best restaurants need to keep on their toes. Those in the hospitality industry will know that customers always expect the best results from their dining experience so a piece of equipment breaking down in the height of the season is a disaster.

If you are with ALS you can not only get the best Chester Catering equipment around but you also can have access to 24/7 emergency servicing. That means if any of your equipment does go on the fritz you know ALS will be there to resolve it in a jiffy. Their highly trained Gas Safe engineers can repair all sorts of Chester catering equipment from ranges, grills, commercial ovens and microwaves to commercial dish and glasswashers and more.

ALS supply elite Chester catering equipment from industry leading manufactures like Blue Seal, Rational, Sammic and more.

If you work in Chester’s thriving hospitality industry there is a lot of competition and you know your catering equipment has to be on top form to deliver optimum results for your food time and again. This is vital, not only for great tasting food, but for health and safety as well. Improperly cooked food can be very dangerous and broken equipment could result in a health risk to your guests.

Always be sure your catering equipment is up to scratch by using ALS’s ongoing maintenance contracts. Your equipment will be regularly serviced and kept in the best working order so you can always trust your commercial catering equipment won’t let you down.

Monday, 8 June 2015

The Importance of Road Haulage in the UK

Road Haulage
Road haulage in North West England and other parts of the UK is an essential enabler of economic growth, employment and wealth creation. The majority of everyday items we use; our necessities such as food, drink and clothing, depend on haulage services to deliver them to our nearest stores and outlets.

Road transport is highly competitive and it is a service-driven industry which responds to the fluctuating demands of customers. The industry develops as both regulations and road conditions change.

Road Haulage Associations represents the industry as clean, innovative, modern, and committed to safety, as well as an essential asset to the UK economy. The UK Government has provided a generous amount of funding for the haulage sector during the period 2015 – 2020. Funds of £500 million are set to support the development of diverse fuels and more efficient vehicles.

Additionally, the industry has a big interest in the condition of its roads and there are a number of other road factors that could benefit highly from further investment. Drivers of any vehicle use the roads to go to their place of work – factories, shops and office. The road network is where the haulage industry is at work. The conditions of the roads affect costs and the ability for staff to do their job efficiently.

Roads should remain well-built and maintained, with even surfaces to make driving safer but to also minimise road noise. The Road Haulage Association proposes the use of signalling technologies to improve traffic flow, as well as information technology to ensure road users have timely and reliable information.

Lastly, the latest trucks on sale meet Euro 6 emissions standards to help mitigate the impact HGVs have over air quality. The transport industry is becoming more advanced and vehicles are far more efficient with fuel and the pollution they produce, creating a cleaner industry than ever before.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Coastal Defence Projects in the UK

coastal defence
Project work for defence contractors in the UK is increasing, with more and more coastal defence work taking place to protect local communities. A great amount of work has commenced during the first half of 2015, with many more projects planned to go underway later on in the year.

Next week coastal defence work will start along Llanddulas tip in North Wales. This is to repair and reinforce the damaged defences over the frontage, which stretches over 810m. The work will involve removing the protection system, a geotextile membrane will then be installed and the rock armour revetment will be re-graded and enlarged.

Defence contractors in the UK complete projects to the highest standard and efficiently, but no project is the same with regards to its set time frame. The work taking place in Llanddulas is expected to take two months to complete, whereas other projects on the go are expected to be completed in the very early new year of 2016.

Market leaders in the supply and placement of graded rock armour for defence projects are providing defence contractors with the opportunity to protect the local communities. If you live close by to the coastline in your area, your household is at higher risk during torrential weather.

Dramatic weather changes can have a very negative impact on the local area, affecting the day to day running of the local area. Footpaths and cycle paths are likely to be closed in the aftermath due to health and safety, roads which stretch along the coastline would also be closed, but also flooding often takes place after a drastic coastal event.  

Fortunately, there is a new national database that holds details of coastal flooding in the UK, which has built up over the last 100 years. This new database called SurgeWatch is set to help prevent coastal flooding by allowing sea defence contractors in the UK to access this useful tool. 

Friday, 29 May 2015

SurgeWatch: A New Database to Help Prevent Coastal Flooding

Description: new national database has been created to help prevent future flooding events. This new database holds details of coastal flooding in the UK which has occurred over the last century, with the hope it’ll provide crucial information to stop such drastic hazards.

There are a number of defence contractors in the UK which supply rock armour for sea defence and marine projects. These construction companies work to protect the communities close by to the coasts throughout the whole of the UK, in order to prevent any further damage being made to the life of these communities, as well as the building surrounding them.

The database called SurgeWatch contains information about 96 large storms taken from tide gauge records, which record sea levels back to 1915. This data includes the highest sea levels produced by storms, as well as descriptions of the coastal flooding that took place during each event. 

This has been produced by a number of researchers, one of which is a lecturer in Coastal Oceanography named Dr Ivan Haigh. He says, “The winter of 2014 saw some of the UK’s most extreme sea levels, waves and coastal flooding for several decades. 

“During this period storms repeatedly subjected large areas of our coast to enormous stress and damage, reminding us of the real and ever-present risks and challenges facing coastal communities today.”

Coastal flooding remains a threat to economic and environmental assets, as well as to life. Therefore, this database will enable others in the industry to improve their understanding of the statistics of extreme sea levels around the UK. For sea defence contractors in the UK, this will be a useful tool. 

It’s vital that there is continual investment in defences for seafronts, as well as the forecasting and monitoring of the information compiled from SurgeWatch. It has shown that seven out of the 96 storms documented over the last 100 years, were those that took place during the winter of 2013/14. 

The damage caused by one of the biggest storms out of the seven last year, was limited in comparison to the tragedy of the storm which took place in January 1953 along the UK’s North sea coast. Therefore the investment is crucial, especially as the coastal defence sector begins to grow. 

Image Credit

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Introducing Automation to the Food & Beverage Industry

Cable Assemblies
The UK food and beverage industry is taking advantage of the benefits automation has for its industry. The growing pressure to cut costs and provide a more reliable service provides more reason to turn to automation for many sectors within industry. The food and drinks sector in general is well-known for having some of the strictest manufacturing and control regulations in industry.

Lapp Group however have excelled with their involvement in the robotics industry and fully understand the benefits that robot technology has within numerous industries, which is also where their cables play an extremely important role from cable assemblies to automation cables.

Batch automation within the food and beverage industry requires robust cable assemblies and other components, to ensure a reliable production line. The use of automation within this industry enables manufacturers to produce precise amounts of products and switch to making other items on the same production line, rather than continuously producing just the one item.

The use of robotics enables this to be done, but has energy-efficient and cost-reducing reasons behind it as to why it should be brought into an array of other sectors. The approach of introducing automation to industry offers consistent quality, greater flexibility and control over the amount of ingredients used and produces less waste. It is an investment worth considering for many manufacturers and not in the food and beverage sector alone.

Robots have become a crucial element of complex production processes, but require cable assemblies and other robust components which can deal with the copious mechanical and physical stresses involved. Lapp provides customers with a custom built cable assembly to guarantee that 100% of your application needs will be met.

If you would like to find out more information on services Lapp offer and their involvement within this sector, then please contact them on 020 8758 7800 or email them at:

Monday, 11 May 2015

The Advantage of Liquid Screed Flooring

Liquid Screed
Liquid screed is one of the concrete services Pump It Ltd offer and all for good reasons. Traditional sand cement has been the most popular option when it comes to flooring, but liquid screed provides several significant advantages.

Before laying your floor you need to consider how much foot traffic is likely, especially if it is within a commercial building where vast amounts of people pass through daily. Additionally, see if it needs to be waterproofed or stain resistant.

Liquid screed is designed specifically to provide you with a smooth, level surface before the application of the final finish. Whether it is in a residential or commercial environment, this option will leave you with a high quality and professional floor finish. It can be used bonded, unbonded or floated and also with underfloor heating.

Screed flooring is a big advantage when it comes to underfloor heating. The smaller depth compared to the traditional sand cement, means heat storage is reduced. This will ensure your floor responds quickly to your desired temperature requirements, which will increase the efficiency of your new heating system.

If your project is limited for time, then liquid screed is the right choice for you. It is ten times faster to install than traditional cement and there is far less labour. Additionally, it dries at an accelerated rate and is completely fine to walk on within the space of 48 hours. This is the ideal solution if you’re working on a commercial property.

Additionally, screed flooring provides longevity, prevention of ‘scarring’ on the flooring from movement of furniture and footmarks, but you can be rest assured that it is more robust and less mark-able ground.

Enquire about booking a liquid screed service today, by calling Pump It Ltd on 01352 781 524 or email them at:

Friday, 8 May 2015

Which Hose Testing Service Do You Need?

hydrostatic testing
The management of Flexible Hose Assemblies (FHAs) is often overlooked by many companies. However, in recent years the Health & Safety Executive and many more companies have grasped the importance of managing the integrity of FHAs.

Hose testing services such as hydrostatic testing, helium testing and nitrogen testing are carried out in order to test for leaking hose assemblies, which are a risk to personal health and safety. Additionally, there are many environmental issues associated with unwanted emissions. Depending on your company and specific requirements, there are numerous hose testing techniques that can be employed:

Hydrostatic Testing – This involves filling a hose assembly with water and taking it to a pre-specified test pressure, which is generally 1.5 times the maximum working pressure. This is then held at this pressure for a set period of time, to ensure it can hold this pressure without leaking.

Helium Testing – Helium is extremely rare in the atmosphere, therefore it makes it easier to find leaks and due to it being inert, it is safe to test with. It has become the method of choice over time, for the majority of high sensitivity leak testing applications. This is used to find small leaks or possibly larger leaks in bigger volumes.

Visual Inspection – The exterior of a hose can be damaged in many ways, which can make you question its integrity. Some of these defects could be obvious dents and kinks, but others can be a lot harder to find. Therefore the Visual Inspection involves examining the outside of a hose for defects, which are likely to cause leaks during service.

Nitrogen Testing – This involves preparing the hose assembly for testing, but making sure the assembly is completely sealed. This is connected to the test rig through a flexible hose one end and the other end of the hose will have a valve attached to release the nitrogen slowly and safely once the test is complete. The hose is pressurised whilst under water to ensure it can hold pressure without leaking.

Vacuum Testing – This testing service is employed to test hose assemblies used in suction applications, to ensure they will stay rigid during service.

Internal Inspection – A hose assembly can pass both a visual inspection and a hydrostatic test, but it can still have imperfections to its internal structure. The inspection involves examining the inside of a hose, looking for any defects which could cause it to fail during service. After this is complete, the hose assemblies are immediately sealed at both ends using custom made caps to prevent ingress of any foreign bodies.

Electrical Continuity Test – Certain applications require an electrical bond between the end fittings of a hose assembly, to avoid creating a static build up within the length of the hose. This is achieved by incorporating a conductive material within the hose bonded to the end fittings.

If you would like to find out more information of the hose testing services Buckley Industrial offer, contact them by calling 01244 544 080 or email their supportive sales team at:

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Civil Engineering: The Industry that Continues to Grow in 2015

Civil Engineering Contractors in North West
Civil engineering as a profession has grown by almost a fifth in 2014, with approximately 159,000 employees in the sector at the end of last year. This was up from 135,000 a year earlier with an increase of 17.7%, which was the fastest that the profession has grown in the last five years.

Civil engineering contractors in the North West such as Jennings BCE have already entered 2015 with an array of contracts, plus they have secured a number of investments which will see the company and industry grow further. Their first contract win of 2015 has been secured in Newquay, Somerset as a result of their performance at the Caernarfon Search and Rescue facility for Balfour Beatty. Additionally, they have secured a number of other opportunities with Van Oord Offshore, The Welsh Assembly Government and have also continued previous year’s plant investments.

Although civil engineering contractors in the North West currently have great success, other areas of the UK are seeing the increase in demand for civil engineering this year. The government and industry aims to make the country’s infrastructure fit for the 21st century, hence the great amount of sea defence, building and groundwork projects being secured. London primarily has had some of the biggest projects over the years, with the Olympics and Crossrail being two examples. However, the rest of the UK is now receiving the same amount of help.

This is one of the main factors to the growth of civil engineering with many jobs being created for engineers, but additionally the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) launched a campaign in mid-April 2015 to promote the profession by highlighting projects around the UK that will benefit local communities.

The Director for ICE, Nick Baveystock states, “Civil engineering forms the backbone of our communities. It protects us from flooding, ensures we have clean drinking water, finds clever ways to recycle and reuse our rubbish and provides us with the roads, railways, ports and airports that keep us on the move and connect us with others. It quite literally shapes the world in which we live.”

Some of the exciting projects which are underway this year currently take place in a number of cities such as Leeds City Centre, with an innovative £45 million flood alleviation scheme to protect the city in the future. Additionally, the new Borders railway which will connect Edinburgh with the Scottish town of Tweedbank is estimated to cost £294 million and will be the longest new domestic railway to be constructed in Britain for 100 years. This will create seven new stations and 30 miles of tracks, which is designed to reduce residents’ reliance on cars and provide a boost to the local economy. 

Monday, 27 April 2015

Why Should You Choose Helium Testing?

Over time helium testing has become the method of choice for the majority of high sensitivity leak testing applications. This testing facility is helping transmission suppliers improve quality and reduce the cost of producing new automatic transmissions developed to improve fuel economy.

Why is helium-leak detection so important?

Due to the complex operation of new multi-speed transmissions, transmission-fluid leaks can significantly affect performance. Detecting leaks at the earliest stages of manufacture, post-casting and pre-assembly, improves quality and customer satisfaction while reducing costs.

Leak points don't necessarily look like cracks or perfectly circular holes so may not be obvious when inspecting it through standard procedures. They may resemble a cave-like system of cracks and pockets within the metal. Air-pressure testing may take days to detect these types of leaks, whereas helium testing can take just a matter of seconds with a total part-to-part test time of roughly 30-40 seconds.

Helium testing is superior to other more traditional methods in a number of other ways as well. Compared to helium, air tests can be significantly affected by changes in temperature caused by hot or cooling components. They also take longer when larger components are involved.

Additionally, manufacturers may test transmissions with helium at the end of the production line. The finished transmission is filled with helium and sealed inside a vacuum chamber. If a leak exists, the helium molecules can be detected as they emerge from the transmission. The process is designed to replicate and identify transmission-fluid leaks that might occur under normal operating conditions.

Why test with helium?

Helium is extremely rare in the atmosphere, which makes it easier to find leaks. In addition, it is inert and therefore is safe to test with. Due to its small molecular size it is very searching enabling it to penetrate tiny holes that other testing fluids may not be able to. Helium with different levels of purity up to 99.99999% pure helium (N7.0), is available depending on your requirements. 

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

What Do You Need to Know About Hydrostatic Testing?

The use of Hydrostatic Testing is great for detecting leaks and making sure the equipment in your workplace is safe to use by employees. This ensures the health and well-being of employees in an industrial environment, but also makes sure the equipment used on a daily basis is at a high standard and quality.

The process of Hydrostatic Testing involves taking a hose assembly and filling this with water, which is often dyed to aid in visual leak detection. This is done before taking it to a pre-specified test pressure. The test pressure is usually 1.5 times the maximum working pressure, which is then held for a set period of time. The measurements of time within this application and testing process are not the same for all testing that is done. This varies on the hose assembly; equipment and other factors that could make this differ.

Once the pressure has been set and the testing is under-gone, the hose is monitored and inspected to ensure that the pressure is held and its integrity is maintained. Many industrial companies provide this service, however Buckley Industrial’s custom built rigs with highly sensitive computer-aided tracking equipment. These allow them to apply the precise amount of test pressure for the assembly for the set period of time without any hassle. This enables them to detect even the smallest of leaks which aren’t visible to the naked eye. If you over-pressurise during this process, this may cause lasting damage to the structure and reliability of the hose.

If you’re searching for a reliable hydrostatic testing service for your workplace or other purposes, then contact this number: 01244 544 080 for one of the most advanced hydrostatic testing facilities available. Alternatively, you can email your enquiry to

All of their testing is carried out in rubber lined troughs, clear of the floor, equipped with clear acylic lids to meet safety standards.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

What is Helium leak testing and why should you use it?

Helium leak testing is normally able to be conducted both on and off site, meaning all types of
customer can be catered for, thanks to portable technology in the leak testing industry. It is now possible to have even the smallest leaks located in any pressure system . Through use of vacuum, hermetic and many more systems, it is possible to locate leaks in any industry, application or equipment.
Helium leak testing is an incredibly effective and accurate process that allows one to seek out leaks in pipe work or components. Helium is pumped through the components and will immediately show any sections that are damaged, leaking and is in need of replacement. There are two primary methods; sniff testing and spray testing. On-site sniff testing consists of the pressurising of component with helium. Consequently, any leaks will be easily identified through its release into the atmosphere. Using a leak detector, the Sniff test will each weld and joint within the assembled component of the system to check for a leak.
Spray testing is used to a higher specification when compared to sniff testing. The component or pipe work will be evacuated using a portable vacuum pump and it will be linked to a helium leak detector. The system will be initiated to create the required vacuum level, whereby helium will be sprayed outside of the component to start the leak checking process. Spraying helium on these joints will allow any leaks to be detected, as the helium will be drawn into the pipe or component by the vacuum and sensed by the leak detector equipment.
Helium is used to test for pipe and component leaks because it is incredibly rare in the atmosphere, making it easier to find a leak. Its tiny molecular size enables it to penetrate tiny holes that many other testing fluids and gases simply cannot do, so you can be sure that you will have a perfectly functioning piece of equipment should these processes not notify you of any damages.