Peter Wade | Energy Safe Victoria

Peter Wade
Energy Safe Victoria
Manager Electrolysis Mitigation

What does your role entail and what does your company do?

I am the Manager of the Electrolysis Mitigation section at Energy Safe Victoria (ESV). ESV is the independent technical regulator responsible for electricity, gas and pipeline safety in Victoria. My role is to ensure compliance with the Electricity Safety Act, and Cathodic Protection regulations, with regard to minimising the stray current effects on underground structures from the traction system (train and tram), and from Cathodic Protection systems.

I also lead a team that carries out the adjustment and inspection of the electrolysis mitigation system associated with the traction network which consists of approximately 1,200 electrolysis drainage bonds connected by over 300km of feeders returning the stray current back to the traction substations.

What has been your favorite corrosion project that you have worked on and why?

Previous to working at ESV, I was at Telstra for 28 years, and City West Water for 3 years. My favorite project in that time was the replacement of the William St water main that runs in the heart of the Melbourne CBD, for about 1.7km.

The original main was a 24” riveted wrought Iron pipe constructed in 1889.  The project was multi-faceted in that we were required to preserve some of the old valves for display (which was done using fish oil on the advice of Dr. Ian McLeod), and the protection of the new main.

The replacement pipe was a 600mm main with a medium density polyethylene coating. Protection was achieved with the combination of galvanic anodes, impressed current cathodic protection, and electrolysis drainage bonds.

This project was extremely satisfying to see the final condition of the pipe; however the challenge of ensuring that the new pipe would give as good of service as the old main, was ever present.

What are the important corrosion related issues facing industry/your business today?

This is nothing new and has been well recognised, but the challenge of keeping young people interested and engaged in the corrosion industry is one of the most important issues facing the industry.

I think it’s important to keep challenging our people and assisting them to become as good as they can possibly be.

Why are you a member of the ACA?

I get a genuine enthusiasm every time I attend an ACA function; whether that be a Branch meeting, seminar, training course, or conference, it tends to renew my interest in different aspects of corrosion.

You can easily get bogged down in the ‘day to day’ issues at your workplace, but I find attending an ACA function challenges you to consider the bigger picture and how the information you gained can be implemented in your workplace.

I am currently part of the newly formed Assets Owners Group that is trying to address more engagement from asset owners in ACA functions, which will bring added benefits in being an ACA member.

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