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The Victorian Government has awarded an engineering firm a grant to develop a new method of replacing bare-wire powerlines, to reduce the risk of bushfires.

Groundline Australia was awarded the grant, with the project aiming to develop a conductor to replace bare-wire powerlines that will reduce the risk of bushfires and potentially enable a safer alternative technology for use across Victoria’s electricity network.

The work will be done in collaboration between the Bendigo engineering firm, manufacturer Amokabel, Swinburne University and electricity retailer United Energy.

The Victorian Government is providing $291,000 to Groundline Australia to kick start the project.

There is approximately 90,000km of, mostly bare-wire, high voltage electrical lines across the state that this new method could be applied to.

The ability to fit a treated conductor onto existing infrastructure with minimal impact on the current installation methods will improve efficiency, reduce costs and put Victoria at the forefront of innovation.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio, said, “We’re putting people first by reducing the risk of bushfires that start from powerlines.

“This means that our bare-wire powerlines can be replaced sooner to improve safety and reduce overall costs.” 

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