Use of Bus Pipe Technologies to Replace Medium and High Voltage Cables

Period of Performance: 04/02/2008 - 02/11/2009


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Unitech, LLC
228 Patterson Ave.
Hampton, VA 23669
Principal Investigator


U.S. Navy has the goal of an improved power distribution system for future naval construction. This power distribution system must be designed for survivability and continuity of electrical power supply. In general, ship service electric power and future electric propulsion power requirements are approaching hundreds of megawatts. Today s shipbuilders face major challenges with the use of standard cable systems at medium voltage levels due to cable stiffness, and cable bend radius requirements for distributing high current around the ship. This proposal demonstrates the advantages of the Insulated Bus Pipe (IBP) technology, installation benefits and weight and space savings associated with IBP as an alternative to traditional shipboard cable systems. The IBP system is currently used in the utility industry and in shipboard applications on several passenger cruise ships. IBP is a more efficient medium & high voltage transmission line over cable for Integrated Power System (IPS) on ships due to weight reduction, cable volume, and installation time. The U.S. Navy has determined that current commercial IBP system can not pass a 3 hour gas flame circuit integrity flame test. It is the focus of this proposal to improve the high temperature performance by developing an insulating matrix to handle the temperatures associated with the 3 hour gas flame circuit integrity flame test.