As we see another busy year fly by, we’re taking a look back at 2022 and all we’ve accomplished. ULC Technologies has a lot to be proud of, alongside our partners and customers. 2022 has been a noteworthy year, filled with exciting new projects, award recognitions, conferences across the world, and further advancements on our established technologies.
Check out some of our top highlights from 2022 below.
Utilities Turn to CISBOT to Enhance Leak Response Programs
This year, CISBOT has continued supporting our gas utility customers’ commitment to transforming the way leak-prone infrastructure is maintained and operated by helping to reduce disruption and harmful carbon emissions. Partnering with utilities, CISBOT has been recognized as a cost-effective solution for emergency leak response. For a wide range of pipe diameters, our technology has been called upon to not only seal leak-prone joints on aging assets but to reactively respond to current joint leaks to reduce environmental impact.
42″ Diameter Joint Sealing
Using a combination of advanced engineering and cross-collaboration within the industry, ULC further advanced the capabilities of CISBOT to seal 42″ diameter joints. In June 2022, CISBOT successfully launched into a 42” diameter live cast iron gas main in Brooklyn, NY on behalf of National Grid for the first time.
Over the years, CISBOT has been continually developed to support our client’s needs and to support operations. Our UK team have also taken CISBOT out of the hustle and bustle of city centers to golf courses in Manchester and have completed multiple large scale remediation projects for SGN and Cadent. Whether a proactive or reactive solution, CISBOT supports the US and UK year after year, keeping the gas flowing safely to customers.
Overall, the innovative robotic technology has sealed more than 49,000 joints across 110 miles/178 kilometers of leak-prone pipe since 2010 across the US and UK, with the big 50,000 joint count milestone just on the horizon.
X-ID Cross Bore Detection: Industry-Wide Acceptance
Our U.S. teams are continuing to make strides in cross bore mitigation programs with the X-ID Cross Bore Detection Sensor alongside our gas utility partners. During 2022, our X-ID technology was out in the field completing various pilot programs across the U.S. Early this year, a newly updated engineering report on X-ID will be released, detailing the equipment, sensor data and findings, reports on pilot programs, and testing processes. Additionally, ULC is collaborating with our gas utility partners and a 3rd party engineering firm on an additional technical report which will also support industry acceptance of our Cross Bore Detection technology, and help X-ID become the focal point of cross bore mitigation and damage prevention programs across the country. Our custom-made sensor deploys directly into newly installed or legacy PE gas mains to detect cross bores, eliminating the need to enter sewer mains and laterals.
DDC-125 Draws Increasing Attention Driven by Net-Zero Goals
The DDC-125 enables utilities to extract stranded natural gas from the isolated section of main, compress it, and inject it back into the active system. The new tool enables utilities to support ESG-driven methane emissions reduction goals, with no loss of product. It eliminates the need for voluntary natural gas flaring or venting associated with routine gas distribution operations to support zero emissions goals and mitigate odor complaints. With more efficient drawdown times than any comparable product in the market, the DDC-125 reduces impact on construction schedules and lowerscosts for utilities.
Contact us today to arrange your demonstration of the DDC-125.
RRES: Revolutionizing Utility Excavation Methods
Back in March 2022, the Robotic Roadworks & Excavation System (RRES) was put to the test on UK innovation partner, SGN’s network. In attendance for the demonstration, was a wide range of visitors across multiple industries including water, gas, construction and transport, who came to see the work that ULC’s engineering team and our partners have put into developing cutting-edge technologies that support their business strategy and journey towards net-zero. Combining below-ground locating sensors, artificial intelligence, machine vision and new excavation methods for safer, faster and smarter roadworks.
Take a look at the video below to see the outcomes of the RRES field trial.
2022 Robotics Business Review Innovation Award
Back in June, ULC received an RBR50 Robotics Innovation award for the development of an autonomous underground scanning system designed to reduce accidental damages to buried assets. The Robotic Underground Survey System (RUSS) is one of several innovations the company is developing and commercializing within the underground locating, inspection, and remediation industries. RUSS is a semi-autonomous system that assists crews in locating and surveying underground infrastructure to build accurate maps of buried pipelines and cables. Using a lightweight, handheld console, the operator can command the wheeled robot to perform an automated scan in both urban and rural areas.
Our R&D teams are always hard at work developing a suite of other technologies in collaboration with new and current partners.
Tradeshows and Conferences: ULC on the Road
Following a couple of years back-to-back with virtual meetings, our ULC teams were able to get back on the road for in-person conferences and seminars across the U.S. and UK. From the Common Ground Alliance (CGA) Conference in Anaheim, to No Dig Live and Utility Week Live in the U.K., seminars and speaking opportunities in between, our team had a great time interacting with those across the industry.
In 2023, we are looking forward to continuing our in-person events at the 2023 CGA and AGA conferences.
A huge thank you to everyone on the ULC team! Whether out in the field, advancing innovation through engineering or working the operations side across the US and UK, you have all worked tirelessly this year to help us succeed. We would also like to thank all our customers who collaborated with us on both field work and R&D projects throughout 2022.