A tale of two cities

2013-04-29 - Compact ABB gas-insulated switchgear enabling substations to hide in the city
By ABB Communications

Space is at a premium in downtown locations the world over. Land is expensive and there is not enough of it, especially for large infrastructure projects like substations.

Yet, substations are vital to city centers. Without them there would be no energy to power the buildings and no electricity to light up the streets. Substations provide the energy that makes the city tick.

To solve urban space constraints, ABB is taking the substation deep underground – where space is less expensive and the substation is out of sight.

Using GIS enables substations to be located underground, offering more scope to urban planners
Delhi and Frankfurt am Main are two of many examples where ABB substations are operating safely, reliably and at affordable cost deep underground.

In Frankfurt am Main, the financial and business center of Germany, ABB has delivered an underground substation that provides the power for the city’s business district and main shopping area.

This state-of-the-art gas-insulated substation is three levels down and 17 meters below street level. Normally, a conventional 110 kilovolt (kV) substation would be as big as a soccer pitch, but with ABB’s gas-insulated technology it is no bigger than a tennis court.

In Delhi, a city of around 14 million inhabitants and the capital of India, ABB has built a 66 kV substation 7 meters underground and hidden in an aesthetically sensitive area, close to the official residence of the president and the beautiful and very popular presidential gardens.

The substation powers sections of the Delhi Metro, India’s first modern public transportation system and one of the largest metro systems in the world, and ensures power supply reliability for a daily ridership of around 2.3 million.

ABB’s underground substation concept has been embraced by planners globally. It enables up to 98 percent of the substation to be hidden underground. The solutions have minimal visual impact and have none of the planning problems encountered by surface-built solutions.

Watch the video below to learn more about the ABB underground substations in Frankfurt and Delhi.

(Front page image of Frankfurt credited to Mylius)

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