Image source: Siemens

Siemens and Netze BW make distribution grids more sustainable and smarter

Germany, Stuttgart: Siemens Smart Infrastructure and Netze BW GmbH have co-developed an intelligent and environmentally friendly distribution substation.

For the first time, the new station combines the F-gas-free 24 kV ring main unit from the Siemens blue GIS portfolio with a 630 kVA distribution grid transformer.

Instead of mineral oil, the Eco Design 2 certified transformer uses fully biodegradable, natural bio-ester oil for insulation. The integrated automation system from the Siemens’ Sicam portfolio is designed for the special requirements of distributed grids and enables reliable monitoring and control of the grid. The innovative substation, which will connect the medium-voltage distribution grid and the low-voltage local grid in the Oberallgäu region, is now being tested under real-life conditions.

The core of the station is a blue GIS 24 kV Ring Main Unit. It combines the Clean Air insulation medium, a mixture of natural, atmospheric gases, with proven and reliable vacuum switching technology. This eliminates the need for any fluorine-based gas mixtures. Integrated into the Netze BW distribution grid, the next step is to test the switchgear live.

Distribution substations are key components of the distribution grid,” stated Stephan May, CEO of the Distribution Systems Business Unit at Siemens Smart Infrastructure. “Together with Netze BW, we have piloted a one-of-a-kind solution that combines our proven switching technology with environmentally-friendly technologies and digital intelligence. With this solution, we are setting a new standard for smart and eco-friendly energy distribution.”

Via an integrated remote terminal unit and a satellite modem, allowing reliable operation as well as monitoring and control from the main control centre, the station is connected to the grid control centre of Netze BW. As the largest grid operator for power, gas and water in the EnBW group, Netze BW has 83 locations in Germany, covering an area of approximately 17,700 km².