ABB wins $53m Eskom order

5 February 2009

International power and automation technology group ABB has won an order worth US$53-million (about R528-million) from South African electricity company Eskom to strengthen its transmission network in the Western Cape province.

The installations, which form part of an initiative to increase power capacity in Cape Town and its surrounding areas, will allow Eskom more flexibility and reduce its reliance on the Koeberg nuclear power station.

ABB will design, manufacture, install and commission six 765-kilovolt capacitor banks at the Alpha, Beta, Mercury and Perseus substations, with the compensators used in the project being from a family of technologies known as flexible alternating current transmission systems (Facts).

“ABB’s Facts technologies allow more power to be delivered more efficiently using existing infrastructure,” ABB Power Systems head Peter Leupp said in a statement this week.

“This reduces the need to build additional transmission lines, lowering environmental impact and minimising cost.”

Advanced control and protection

The project includes ABB’s Mach2 technology, which is an advanced control and protection system, and the most widely applied platform for high voltage direct current and Facts solutions, bringing the benefit of fast, flexible, real-time control.

ABB is a pioneer in Facts technologies, with the largest installed base in the world. Eskom has awarded ABB a number of contracts in recent years, including a $90-million order to upgrade control systems and instrumentation at the Matla power plant in north-eastern South Africa.

This latest order was booked in the fourth quarter of 2008, and is expected to be complete by 2010.

SAinfo reporter

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