OptoSci Ltd is pleased to announce the launch of OptoMole, their latest innovative gas detection system designed to help Gas Distribution Networks (GDN) quickly find leaks from underground gas mains.

OptoMole uses novel laser and fibre optic based detection techniques to carry out real-time profiling of methane gas concentrations in buried ducts or voids, indicating the likely location of the leaking gas main.

The system has been developed in partnership with the UK Gas Distribution Networks (GDN) and the Energy Innovation Centre (EIC) and has recently won the UK Energy Industry award for ‘Best Innovation Contributing to Quality and Reliability of Gas Supply.’

The system transmits a low power laser signal via a fibre optic cable to a compact sensor head which is passed through a buried service duct. Analysing the return laser signal allows OptoMole to instantly display the changing methane concentration in the duct, highlight the gas ingress points and direct the operator to the potential gas main leakage sites.

The system speeds up the leak investigation process, reduces GDN costs and helps to mitigate the health and safety risk associated with leaking methane gas. In addition, OptoMole’s all optical detection technique means that the sensor travelling through the duct is inherently safe with no risk of accidental spark ignition in a potentially explosive gas filled environment.

OptoSci Ltd. was founded in 1994 as a spin-off company from the University of Strathclyde with the key objective of incubating, developing & commercially exploiting selected innovative photonics technology arising from internal and academic research. OptoSci design and manufacture a range of innovative photonics products and systems with a focus on industrial gas detection for health & safety, process control and environmental monitoring.