Vol. 3 Issue 3

In the transformers industry, Maschinenfabrik Reinhausen (MR) is a synonym for voltage regulation. Majority of transformers today operating around the globe are equipped with some kind of a tap-changer from MR.

In the past, voltage regulation used to be required only at higher voltage levels in the transmission grid. However, nowadays, due to several reasons, voltage regulation is increasingly required in the distribution grid at lower voltage levels.

Having launched the world’s first tap-changer solution for voltage regulation distribution transformers (VRDTs) ready for mass production in 2012, MR set new standards in this area. In May 2016, at an official launch event at the CWIEME fair in Berlin, Germany, MR presented a new, more advanced generation of tap changers for distribution transformers – ECOTAP VPD.

The new ECOTAP VPD combines the know-how MR has accumulated over the decades in vacuum on-load tap-changers with the experience in VRDTs gained through working with transformer manufacturers and operators. The ECOTAP VPD provides a superior vacuum technology at a price that makes use of VRDTs even more attractive and further expands the range of application.

Technologically superior – economically convincing

The compact dimensions of the ECOTAP VPD on-load tap-changer permit installation in virtually any power-rating class of distribution transformers without any major changes to the footprint. What is more, the electro-mechanical operating principle of the proven MR vacuum technology with 500,000 maintenance-free tap-change operations ensures stable and reliable operation for decades, without the need to service the primary equipment. The direct drive with up to 20 tap-change operations per minute enables quick responses to changing grid conditions. Nine tap-changer positions, with a mid-position which the operator is free to choose, ensure a large regulating range with fine steps between the tap changes. Thanks to its IP54 degree of protection, the ECOTAP VPD can be used outdoors and in selected synthetic and natural esters. Operation in applications with stringent environmental compatibility and thermal demand requirements is therefore also possible.


Figure 1. The ECOTAP VPD on-load tap-changer (right) and the associated controller (left)

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