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The Emergency “Transformer to go”

The risk of blackouts in the USA is constantly rising. However, a new emergency concept will enable a power supply to be restored in a very short time. PFISTERER has developed the necessary components for this as well as extensive equipment. The first mobile units were ordered by Westar Energy from Kansas and Con Edison from New York.

The majority of power transformers operated in the USA were installed between 1950 and 1970 and have long since exceeded their expected service life of 40 years. If a transformer fails, it cannot be replaced quickly. It can take up to a year to build a new one, transport it to its location, and install it. In view of the daily threat of transformer failure, there is an urgent need for action among energy supply companies.

New form of mobility

One solution offering greater reliability of supply for the future is the mobile emergency transformer designed by Siemens, which is operational within just 96 hours following a blackout. This is made possible by the pluggable, touch-proof CONNEX connection system from PFISTERER. Transformers equipped in this way can be constructed in such a compact form that they can be transported by truck or rail wagon without a special permit. For a particularly space-saving transformer design, PFISTERER developed the first dry-pluggable bushing for voltages up to 362 kV. This takes up only one third of the length that a conventional bushing requires for discharging the field control inside the transformer. Peter Müller, project manager at PFISTERER explains: “At the tip of the bushing, there is a convergence of two different field control systems. To simulate this area and design it accordingly was a great challenge, for which PFISTERER had to rely on its entire expertise as the sole supplier of pluggable HV bushings,” continues Müller. Moreover, the bushings can simply be removed and transported separately if required.

Learn more about PFISTERER’s emergency transformer system