Powering on – despite the storm

Ultra-light utility poles bring electricity back to snow-covered Anhui city within one day
BASF Elasolit utility poles being deployed in Anhui Province, China in January 2018

Challenge: Keeping the lights on during a storm
In January 2108 a severe storm hit Anhui Province, China. Almost 250 concrete utility poles were knocked down, plunging the surrounding community into darkness. The mountainous landscape, about 550 meters above sea level, posed a challenge for first responders. They needed to get more resilient power infrastructure in place – fast.

Rising to the challenge: flexible utility poles
Responding quickly to the disaster, Anhui Huike Hengyuan Composite Material Company Limited (Huike) transported 40 utility poles made with BASF’s Elastolit® polyurethane across the rough terrain. Each new pole weighed just 250kg – less than a quarter of the weight of a similar concrete pole. Because the flexible poles required less manpower and equipment than conventional poles, they were installed in just 20 hours. Electricity was restored within a day: five days faster than if conventional poles had been used. The new poles have remained standing through continued severe winter weather.

Bends but doesn’t break
China is moving to upgrade its infrastructure for the advent of climate change. Climate-ready infrastructure must be strong enough to withstand the onslaught of rain, snow, wind and hail. In some cases – as with utility poles – it must also be flexible enough to bend but not break. BASF Elastolit® PU is just that. Enabled by a unique filament winding technology, Elastolit® remains robust even when exposed to heavy snow, strong wind and widely varying temperatures.

Light weight and durable: Elastolit® utility poles are an excellent way to keep the power on – regardless of the weather.

About BASF
At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The approximately 114,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into five segments: Chemicals, Performance Products, Functional Materials & Solutions, Agricultural Solutions and Oil & Gas. BASF generated sales of about €58 billion in 2016. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (BAS). Further information at