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Bird in the Bush

Flexicon has supplied telephone company Telstra with Cockatoo proof flexible conduit to protect power cables supplying telephones in the Australian outback from attack. Telstra is the largest provider of local and long distance telephone services, mobile services, dialup, wireless, DSL and cable internet access in Australia.

The company found that Cockatoos in the South East Australian outback were chewing through the existing conduit between their phone booths and the solar panels that supply power to them. This damage to the conduit and the power cables installed in them could lead to a loss of service in areas where a secure and reliable telephone line could be needed in an emergency. With some of these phones located in extremely
remote areas there is also the issue of maintenance time and costs.

In testing, Flexicon exposed 15 different industrial conduits to cockatoos. At the end of the test two conduits
remained undamaged the company’s FPAS and FPAH.

Says Chris Poulton, Flexicon UK’s export manager: “Contrary to what we might have expected the product
specification had little to do with strength or robustness. Both FPAS and FPAH conduit are slippery so the birds can’t get enough grip on them to cause damage.”

Flexicon also had to consider Australia’s climate. Both FPAS and FPAH are flame retardant nylon conduits that withstand temperatures of up to 120ºC – providing protection against the Australian heat. In addition, because they are low fire hazard products, they reduce the risk of bush fires starting from electrical faults.

Other properties include abrasion resistance, high impact strength and UV resistance.

Says Poulton: “We have thousands of products in our conduit range. Coming up with the right solution can involve a lot of testing, intensive research and specialist knowledge. Sometimes we have to develop
specific tests for unique circumstances and this is a good example of that.”

“Export is playing a significant role in our ongoing success. We are always looking for opportunities to expand our product lines by providing solutions to issues experienced in different global environments. This often benefits the UK market in that it extends our experience and our product range.”

Flexicon is the UK’s fastest growing conduit manufacturer. It can offer fast turnaround and delivery on stock items, special bespoke assemblies and cut lengths. The company can also develop solutions to meet specific project requirements.

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