ABB's central inverters feed power successfully to the electricity grid in Latin America

2013-01-11 - ABB’s first megawatt-scale photovoltaic (PV) power plant in Latin America using ABB central inverters has been commissioned and is successfully feeding power to the electricity grid in Mexico.

ABB in Mexico has supplied the first central inverters, PVS800, to the 1.2 megawatt (MW) PV power plant installed on the roof of the parking lot. The plant is located in ABB’s factory site in San Luis Potosi in Mexico. The system will produce approximately 1800 megawatt-hours (MWh) clean energy annually and save approximately 1,700 tons of CO2 emissions annually.

In addition to the five 250 kW central inverters, ABB’s scope of supply included medium voltage (MV) transformers and switchgear for efficient and secure MV grid connection to the 13.2 kV grid, as well as low voltage components for connection to the solar arrays.

The San Luis Potosi site is a perfect example of the integration of PV power generation into the built environment, not only from an electricity generation point of view, but also from a structural point of view. This type of integration offers added value as PV modules serve as a shading device for the cars and replace the need for conventional construction materials. At the same time the building is a source of electrical power. Integration of PV power generation into commercial and industrial buildings supports the grid perfectly, reducing the need for distribution and peak power demand as the daily solar power maximum typically coincides with the load demand in this kind of application.

“Our solar inverter offering is complemented with a broad range of ABB’s high-quality products like MV transformers and grid connection equipment suitable specifically for PV power plants. This, together with ABB’s local capabilities, gives the customer a real one-stop-buying advantage that has proven its value in the dynamic, fast-paced PV business,” says Sergio Bautista, manager of Drives & Controls at ABB in Mexico. “The high efficiency and easy–to-maintain industrial design of our central inverters, in addition to ABB’s local technical support, are the key success factors for our central inverters. There is large potential in Latin America and Mexico for solar power and I expect more projects to come.”

The ABB central inverter series, rated from 100 to 630 kW, is designed for multi-megawatt PV power plants as well as large and medium-sized installations on commercial and industrial buildings. With the central inverter’s certification as well as advanced and flexible grid support functions, it is possible to meet all applicable network connection requirements, regardless of where the project is located. To help secure the highest return on investment, ABB supports its customers with a dedicated global service network providing a complete range of life cycle services in more than 60 countries.

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.

1.2 MW PV power plant in Mexico produces 1800 MWh of clean, CO2-free energy annually and replaces conventional construction materials on the roof of the parking lot.

ABB's 250 kW central inverter, PVS800