US Investor Backs South Wales Start Up

FaultCurrent extends the capacity of the existing power grid

by Ling Tan | Friday 7 April 2017

Andy Cheer / Martin Ansell / Jeremy Hall
A device which protects power systems from disruption and damage to network
infrastructure has won extra funding for commercial development.

FaultCurrent Ltd uses groundbreaking magnetic technology to allow the existing
power grid to cope with excessive fault conditions, brought about by the rapid move
towards decentralisation of electricity generation, including the connection of
alternative energy sources such as wind and solar.

Developed as a spin-out from research undertaken at Cardiff University, the device is inactive during normal power flow and only reacts when excessive fault currents are detected, inhibiting the flow to allow the existing power network protection systems to safely isolate the problem.

Eriez Investments Ltd becomes a shareholder in FaultCurrent, and Eriez Magnetics
Europe Limited, who were engaged in the manufacture of FaultCurrent’s full-scale
prototype, will manufacture the commercial product under license at its facility in Caerphilly, South Wales.

”Eriez Magnetics is excited to become an investor in FaultCurrent,”said Tim
Shuttleworth, CEO of US parent Eriez Manufacturing Company Inc. “We have the
knowledge and understanding of magnetic materials and processes to support
FaultCurrent’s ambitions to grow as a global business.”

Martin Ansell, Chairman and CEO of FaultCurrent, said: “With help from the UK
Government’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and our founding investor, IP Group plc,
FaultCurrent has already successfully tested a full-scale prototype and now has the investment needed to refine its design into a commercial product, suitable for application on power distribution grids. We are aiming for commercial trials before the end of 2017.”

Dr Nick Bourne, Head of Commercial Development, Cardiff University, said: “I’m
delighted the University has developed such a productive partnership with Eriez
Magnetics which will help establish and grow a new high-tech venture in Wales
based on our respective strengths and expertise.”

The patented technology behind FaultCurrent has been developed by magnetic
engineering expert Dr Jeremy Hall at Cardiff University’s Wolfson Centre for
Magnetics. Dr Hall said: “Our technology can play a major role in managing new
demands on ageing and already overburdened electrical infrastructures to allow the connection of cleaner distributed energy sources, which is good news in terms of tackling climate change.”


Steve Tunney
Eriez Magnetics Europe Ltd
+44 2920 868501

Friday 7 April 2017 / file under Engineering | Power