Latest product launches

New heavy duty chamber access systems designed to safeguard underground infrastructure assets

Posted: Wednesday 2nd March 2016

For accessing and safeguarding communication networks, pumps, valves and power cables.

Drainage product and access cover leader, Clark-Drain has launched its new range of chamber access systems designed to improve underground utility access and protect valuable underground assets such as data communication networks, pumps, valves and power cables.

Designed for installation in footways and carriageways, Clark-Drain believes that the introduction of the system will deliver security benefits particularly in vulnerable industry sectors where asset security is a key issue. For example, organisations that carry sensitive information across fibre-optic cables are potentially vulnerable from criminal threats, either from cyber-attacks or cable theft. These can include the financial, insurance, healthcare, and government defence sectors.

Fash Shahidi, Key Account Manager, Clark-Drain comments, ‘Chamber installations at maintenance access points in any utility network need to be durable and secure. If vulnerable access points are not well protected capturing or eavesdropping on data or deliberate asset damage not only serves military purposes, but in commercial and public environments can lead to unnecessary cost and lost productivity.’

In other key sectors such as highways and water authorities safety is a key factor. The exceptional strength to weight properties of the polypropylene chamber provides a relatively light weight product for easy manual handling and excellent loading performance in use. Fash continues, “When designing the chamber we have thought carefully about safety during underground utility maintenance work. Built in features such as factory-fitted step irons have a slip-resistant tread pattern design, manufactured & tested to EN13101:2002, coupled with a lattice structure within the chamber walls to provide minimal flexing and prevent operator uncertainty during access. The uniform lattice structure inside the chamber walls also provides a firm structure for easy manual handling and assembly.”

Key applications for the access chamber system will include: for water utility companies - the protection of pumping systems and valves; in the defence sector - data cable protection; in construction – used in the general building of underground utilities; in the rail industry – providing security for non-track-side cabling; the installation of security grids for prisons on the public sector; and in highways - providing access to street lighting, traffic signals and motorway communications.

UK Manufactured in-house from tough 100% recycled polypropylene the new chambers will be sold as complete assemblies to help streamline product sourcing for construction buyers and to simplify stock management.

Fash adds, “Supplied to a customer’s precise requirements the heavy duty chambers will be delivered as one complete system with galvanised steel or ductile iron access covers including security and non-security options, chamber furniture, i.e. bearer bars, step irons, sump grill, all accessories and pre-configured duct holes, etc. Plain sided chamber options are also available for onsite bespoke drilling requirements. Full installation guidelines are provided with the chamber. Customers benefit from having drawings provided to specification which they can amend and sign off so that they receive the precise solution for their installation”

To verify the integrity of duct installations, Mandrel testing will ensure that the minimum acceptable internal diameter of the duct entries is maintained throughout. The chamber bellmouths are designed to be Mandrel test friendly.

The chambers are manufactured under a certified BS EN ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System and are tested to BS EN 124 D400 loading whilst our covers and frames are compliant to FACTA and BS EN 124 B125 and D400. Coupled with this is a long product life, which is further enhanced by the chambers’ resistance to ground acids, alkalines, petrol and diesel.

Multiple clear opening sizes from 300mm x 300mm to 1800mm x 675mm will be available.

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