kVA, system kWh and even GPS location for larger premises. From this platform, companies will be

able to gain a greater understanding of where savings can be made, as well as examining any potential issues that may cause costly downtime in factory environments.

GREAT EFFICIENCIES AT THE CORE Alongside the development of smart technology, many facilities are eager to upgrade to maximise efficiencies and reduce electricity consumption leading to the development of core materials which experience lower losses and providing greater efficiencies. One such technology that already has a

by Dr Alex Mardapittas, CEO of Powerstar W

ithin factory and processing environments there is a host of

machinery and equipment integral to the day to day operations of businesses and subjected to long running hours, often leading to significant energy costs for companies within the industry. As a result, many are exploring ways to reduce electricity bills and find solutions that are both cost effective and can be integrated into modern energy management platforms. One solution to reduce excessive

energy consumption is to evaluate the role of the site’s distribution transformer. Across the UK, distribution transformers play a pivotal, but often overlooked, role in managing the high voltage (HV) infrastructure. Many large-scale manufacturing,

engineering, and processing companies will own and operate one or more distribution transformers on site, depending on requirements. In such cases, distribution transformers are energised 24 hours a day, seven days a week, even when they do not carry an electrical load, simply to ensure that buildings receive the correct electricity supply that is safe for use and fit for the factory environment. However, as energy managers in factory

facilities are aware, the way in which electricity use is monitored and analysed


has changed drastically in recent years. Unfortunately, despite this rapid transition and advancements within smart technology and cloud software, distribution transformers have been left behind as other technologies are upgraded to incorporate connectivity and remote monitoring. Despite being critical infrastructure and

invaluable to many processing facilities, distribution transformers are often not integrated, or even compatible, with modern technology that would allow companies to view asset performance and condition in real time and make informed decisions based on the data available. However, the launch of smart

distribution transformers has brought a step-change in the industry, delivering both energy efficiency and technology ready for Industry 4.0 that can be integrated with other monitoring systems for a holistic, connected smart energy solution for HV infrastructures. Smart distribution transformers provide

top-level information for manufacturing environments, displaying useful grid information, conditional performance, and energy efficiency reports. If greater visibility is required, detailed information and reports can be accessed such as oil analysis, voltage, amps, phase to phase metrics, real power, power factor, core temperature, harmonic distortion, system

Above: Powerstar SO-LO

Below: Dr Alex Mardapittas, CEO of Powerstar

reputation for delivering results is the amorphous alloy core. It is a well- established material that has been widely studied and tested across a wide range of applications. When compared with CRGO ‘rigid’ cores, the amorphous alloy has a flexible atom structure that allows for easy magnetisation and demagnetisation to take place, which delivers improved efficiencies, reduces the amount of wasted energy, and therefore minimises CO2 emissions.

Further benefits can be delivered by

installing a distribution transformer that is bespoke to exact site requirements. When provided, distribution transformers designed and delivered from concept to completion can provide enhanced site resilience and protect against issues in the grid supply voltage, such as fluctuations, particularly when integrated with additional voltage management technology. This means high energy users are able to reduce the expensive and unnecessary overvoltage supplied to a site through the high voltage (HV) infrastructure, prior to reaching the low voltage (LV) infrastructure. To conclude, although distribution

transformers are vital across larger factory facilities, many are not currently performing at optimum condition due to the inability to monitor output. Manufacturing, engineering, and processing environments that consume a significant amount of energy should now start looking to a sustainable future with all systems, especially distribution transformers.

Powerstar T: +44 (0) 1142 576 200


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