Crawl is a compact and lightweight (30kg) solution to the currently inefficient overhead power line service and installation equipment. Crawl is a pneumatically powered motorised platform designed to secure a linesman to its platform, clamp to a utility pole and ascend safely and quickly to the point of damage or installation. Crawl is ultra portable and manoeuvrable, however has been specifically designed to not replace an insulated truck-mounted boom but rather complement existing equipment.
Until now just one design (insulated truck-mounted boom) has been the backbone of a dangerous industry. The growing concern of global climate change and its already realised effects is causing utility companies to go into overdrive. The flow-on effect of failing utility services and infrastructure, specifically damaged overhead power lines, is exposing the deficiencies of an 8-tonne truck to service the power grid. While the trucks belonging to these companies have proven effective in repairing overhead power lines, they are oversized, are often part of a small fleet and cause several inconveniences to the surrounding community when operational.
There is a no alternative to the equipment available to power companies to repair and maintain utility pole services and power supply. By developing a series of sketches, CAD concepts and prototypes I have been able to refine and validate a new design. Ongoing research throughout the project including stress, digital and physical testing have verified Crawl according to the project’s objectives.