ABB to enable world's largest digital substation in Belarus
Belarus, a country with more than nine million people, sharing borders with five countries, is experiencing growing electricity demand and its power grid is evolving to meet this need. Digital technology is considered to be a key pillar in coping with future changes related to both power generation and demand. To that end, ABB will enable the world’s largest digital substation with the upgrade of one of the biggest air-insulated substations (AIS) ever built for the Belarus Ministry of Energy and its transmission utility Mogilevenergo.
As part of the upgrade, the substation will be equipped with digital technology that enhances controllability and reliability while optimising operating costs. ABB will supply protection and control equipment, an ABB Ability MicroSCADA system and a digital process bus, which enables interoperable communication between vendors through Ethernet cables instead of copper wires, saving cost and space. As part of the project, ABB will also supply digitally enabled high-voltage products like fibre-optic current sensors and disconnecting circuit breakers (DCBs) to the engineering and procurement company RIKO.
Digitalisation enables unprecedented visibility of assets and systems and the efficient harnessing of extensive volumes of data. Digitalisation also enables the easy integration of IT and OT systems, enabling operators in control centres to interpret key insights in real time and as a result, prevent critical failures. With increasing numbers of smart sensors in the field, the amount of process data being collected and analysed within the substation is increasing correspondingly, allowing for protection and control, or for condition monitoring where the data is run against predictive models and machine learning in the cloud.
“ABB continues to be at the forefront of digital grid technology development with a range of digital products and software, substation automation, control and protection solutions, from the field to the board room,” said Massimo Danieli, head of ABB’s Grid Automation business within the company’s Power Grids division. “We are pleased to support Belarus’s digital substation, reinforcing our position as a partner of choice for a stronger, smarter and greener grid.”
Another key component of ABB’s scope of supply includes its FOCS-FS (Fiber Optics Current Sensors – Free Standing), and a non-conventional instrument transformer that facilitates open standards based IEC 61850 communication in the digital substation. The digital substation also collects real-time data on primary equipment and converts this into actionable intelligence to help the utility to monitor, control and maintain assets, as well as derive cost-efficiencies. This critical asset data can then be sent to ABB Ability Ellipse asset performance management software that will enable predictive and preventive maintenance as well. ABB’s DCBs will provide the functionality of a circuit breaker and a disconnector combined in a single unit, making the substation even more compact.
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