Flexicon Conduits from Elquip Solutions: Liquid–tight technology for subsea vehicles

Elquip Solutions has made a name for itself as a quality provider of market-leading electrical components, tooling and machinery for a wide range of industries. In a bid to source the right product for a specific industrial requirement, this Gauteng-based company has introduced a high-end, comprehensive range of flexible conduit systems and components from UK manufacturer Flexicon to the local market.

These conduit systems provide superior cabling protection, particularly in high-demand, hazardous environments such as in the rail or mining industries. Further demonstrating its versatility, Flexicon’s liquid-tight conduit system has been used to protect the power supply to subsea remotely-operated vehicles (ROVs) in the oil and gas industry in Brazil, China and Australia.

The 63mm LTP conduit and special engineered fittings are used to protect the slipring connections inside the winch. This provides 3.3KV feeds to the power transmission system, which connects the subsea ROV to the surface, according to Mike Cronin, Managing Director of Elquip Solutions.

“In addition to the power cables, fibre optic elements are included in the single cable connection system called an ‘umbilical’. The tail from the slip ring is a loose bundle of copper and fibre optic cables, which terminates in a junction box on the winch. This bundle needs protecting from sea spray and harsh offshore environments to maximise its service life and provide trouble-free operation,” says Cronin.

In the subsea environment it is essential that power is maintained for data to the ROV, because when the ROV is not working, it means the entire rig is down and not drilling. Providing ongoing protection for the slip ring from the environment is therefore vital.

“Flexicon is specified in these situations because the liquid-tight LTP conduit has an exceptional bend radius which is necessary to fit inside the winch. It is also a proven system that can withstand an incredibly harsh environment and Flexicon engineers are able to provide special connectors to ensure an IP68 rating with different input and output sizes,” says Cronin.

Flexicon conduits are known for their robustness in the harshest environments. Additional protection such as EMC shielding, high-impact or crush-resistance, corrosion and oil-resistance are also performance benefits, dependent on the conduit selected.

As specialists in this field, Flexicon has developed two broad product ranges, metallic and non-metallic, available from 10mm to 106mm in diameter. The company also has a wide range of patented fittings and connectors, locking and non-locking, designed for ease of use and adaptable for any application.

“Elquip has had a long and proud association with Flexicon – it is a highly innovative company which has developed a large range of products to suit every conceivable application. We are particularly excited about Flexicon’s range of conduits which have been specially designed for the demands of specific industrial applications worldwide,” Cronin concludes.