Prolec GE Newsletter - November 2013

November 2013         

“The True Cost” of Transformer Failure

Prolec GE India has successfully completed four years of journey in the Indian Transformer Industry and has now entered into the fifth year on May 2013.

We are proud to proclaim that we have successfully completed four years in the Indian Transformer industry after our entry in May 2009. From the time of origin until today, we have transferred many technology and process related improvements from our parent company in America to our manufacturing facilities in Chennai and Kanchipuram. Today, our facilities have emerged as one of the state of the art manufacturing set-up comparable with international standards. This journey has been exciting and our highly motivated and knowledgeable team along with our esteemed client base has provided us the impetus to achieve success in Indian market. In this journey, we have achieved the following milestones:

  • Failure of a 8 MVA wind power transformer of an export unit
  • Failure of a 25 MVA solar power transformer, which was taken to North India for repair
  • Failure of 31.5 MVA wind farm transformer, which was taken to Baroda (Gujarat) for repair
  • Failure of a number of Distribution Transformers

The above factors show that transformer should be bought from very reliable manufacturer who is geographically close to the power plant.

There are following specific reasons for this recommendation:

a) We find that even very regular transformer suppliers don’t produce transformer according to guaranteed losses. Their test set up is rigged during inspection.

b) When transformer fails, it is taken back to manufacturer’s premises for repair; the works location is either in Baroda or any other part of North India. This takes much longer time and effort of sending the transformer for repair adding to the revenue loss.

c) When we did system studies in the field, we have found transformers with higher losses even though during inspection the losses were as per the Guaranteed Technical Particulars (GTPs). This also delays the ROI than originally considered while designing the wind or solar farm

d) Price difference between compliant and non compliant designs is as high as 10% to 12.5% and not 1% or 2%.

Prolec GE a transformer manufacturing company following compliance & ethical policies offers advantage of geographical location being located in South India (Chennai and Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu). We have immense experience in supplying transformers for renewable projects that are performing satisfactorily in the field. Our geographic proximity to renewable energy project sites in the southern region of India gives us the leverage of supporting our customer by understanding and offering “on time” response.

We conduct transformer tests at site and also check system efficiency test for I2R loss for end users. We being a part of GE are ethical, reliable and compliant. Incase you wish to engage us for system study of your current installation we can offer the same for which you can contact.

Mr. K. Subramanian
Mobile – +91 (0) 95000 86109
Email – Subramanian.k@prolec-geindia.com

Case of Point

We recently conducted a challenge test on transformers in a cement plant. Out of the four transformers that were tested at the location, three had the losses 10% to 15% higher than what was committed in the GTP. Though the transformers are performing satisfactorily, they were found to be non compliant to the losses guaranteed.

Transformer designs are not like other electrical equipment. For transformers we have to guarantee:

  • Performance
  • Contractual load and no load losses
  • Temperature rise and other technical parameters

It means we as Prolec GE can offer transformers which not only will perform satisfactorily, but also comply with the contractual parameters. Even if the cost is slightly higher, we assure the worth for the money.

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100kVA/11kV (including “Star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico

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Prolec GE Newsletter - June 2013

June 2013                  

Prolec GE Powers into Fifth Year of Indian Transformer Industry

Southern part of India (Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu) is the biggest market for Renewable Energy. Wind power installed capacity in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka is around 9200MW and Tamil Nadu alone is targeted to add 6000MW of wind power by 2016-17. Same is the case with Biomass and Solar where Southern states such as Tamil Nadu are striving to become the forefront leaders.

We are aware of the huge investments made in renewable projects by end users with the expectation of maximum output to achieve faster Return on investment (ROI). Transformer being the heart of a substation thus becomes very critical equipment to ensure power availability to the grid. Occurrence of transformer failure even once in the lifecycle during peak time of power production, costs not only the replacement/repair, but also reduces significantly the revenue and financial performance of the plant for whole of its life cycle (A 30 days downtime of a 1.5MW turbine during peak season can cost ~INR 50 Lakhs or 10% of project cost. Similarly substation transformer failure will cost INR 7.5 crores).

We have seen some typical cases in the past that include:

  • We are the only transformer manufacturer in the world to implement Total Quality Management (TQM), Toyota Production System (TPS) and Employee Health and Safety (EHS) initiatives that helped in achieving most competitive lead times and increased employee safety.
  • We have successfully completed audits on Quality Management System and TRS (Technical Regulation and Standards) with reference to ISO9001:2008 and GE Energy QMS requirements.
  • We have implemented mechanical design automation systems for achieving error free information with minimum cycle time
  • We have successfully penetrated into 400kV class power transformers and “three star” rated distribution transformer market thereby proving our technology expertise.
  • We have successfully exported large number of transformers to Middle East, Africa and Australia regions exceeding the requirements of their respective standards and specifications.
  • We have developed world class testing facilities with high accuracy equipment, making it one of the best amongst international player’ facilities.
  • We are the first in transformer industry to pioneer 24/7 hotline service for technical assistance and after sales service at anytime of the day.
  • We have successfully conducted several short circuit tests at various laboratories on our Distribution Transformers, Power Transformers and Open Ventilated Dry Type Transformers (OVDT).
  • We have shifted our OVDT facility from Thirumazhisai to Kanchipuram thereby increasing our installed capacity for dry type transformers.
  • We have shifted our head office from Thirumazhisai to Kanchipuram for faster response to our esteemed customers.

With the above milestones we continue to serve our customers with utmost quality and reliable transformer products for their applications. Aiming for a long term association, we partner with our clients, which mark our commitment to Indian Transformer Industry.

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Three stars” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power
Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.

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Prolec GE Newsletter - March 2013

March 2013                  

“Non Compliant” practices exposed!!

Prolec GE has been continuously stressing on non compliant practices being adopted in transformer industry. Two classic cases which were highlighted in our previous newsletters and also in public domain are

  • Challenge test of 5 MVA and 8 MVA transformers where measurements at CPRI showed losses higher by 30 – 100% than what was guaranteed.
  • Debarring of non compliant transformer manufacturers by Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Ltd (UPPCL), in which, a company belonged to the same state was blacklisted.

Here we bring another example, in which, a non compliant manufacturer has supplied under rated transformer to a contractor instead of a 500 kVA transformer.

A 500 kVA transformer which failed during operation came to a transformer servicing company for repair. The transformer was opened for inspection and service. However, checking the transformer dimensions, the servicing company was suspicious on the transformer rating, as it was much smaller as compared to an average 500 KVA transformer dimensions.

In concurrence with the customer, the core coil assembly was lifted to ascertain the transformer rating. Basic parameters of the transformers were measured. It was found that the actual rating of the transformer can never be more than 315KVA as compared to 500KVA as mentioned on the rating plate. Measuring the core diameter, conductor size and losses clearly revealed this.

It was also found that the temperature rise of the transformer would be 70 deg C above the ambient, which is much above the temperature rise limits of “Class A” insulation of the oil filled transformers. It will reach a temperature of 113 deg C as against 98 deg C which is the maximum allowed temperature.

Considering the above facts, it is advised to take care of the following while buying a transformer

  • Buy transformers from reliable transformer suppliers instead of going for manufacturer offering L1 price
  • Conduct design reviews with a qualified personnel to question the transformer designs
  • Use third party inspection facilities provided by test agencies such as ERDA who can question the test setup
  • Conduct surprise inspections while the job is manufactured

Recently, for a tender, Punjab state utility introduced challenge testing clause, after which very few transformer manufacturers participated in the bid. The price levels in the bid suddenly increased and price difference between manufacturers, which was as high as 10 and 12% earlier went down to attain similar levels.

EPC contractors can decide to buy on L1 basis without going through the above technical recommendations, but they do undergo a risk of losing their reputation if the installed transformer fails or the end customer gets the transformer tested with a third party agency.

It is well known that taking advantage of end user’s lack of knowledge on transformers, several suppliers intentionally supply underrated or high loss transformers than guaranteed in the specification. Thus end customers get cheated and their energy and cost conservation measures go in vain.

Prolec GE is thus taking up these cases to create awareness among the customers as transformer industry, at present, is suffering from non compliant practices. We have the responsibility of driving the issue of compliance for which your support is needed.

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Three stars” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power
Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.


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Prolec GE Newsletter - January 2013

January 2013                  

“Stepping up” wind energy returns to new heights

Development of thermal and nuclear power plants have slowed down due to policy issues. Land availability and environmental clearances are getting tougher. Though Government of India (GOI) initiated renewable energy with favorable policies and incentives, facing the above challenges still demands huge acceleration of power generation capacity.

Transformer is a critical purchase item for wind power applications and customer awareness selecting a transformer is limited. Hence, Prolec GE has been advocating that careful selection is necessary from the point of CAPEX, OPEX and reliability for wind energy application helping customers gain most out of their investment.

“Best in class transformer solutions” for wind energy by Prolec GE

We consider it prudent to once again bring out this live issue explaining the criticalities of wind power transformers.

Total Ownership Cost (TOC)

Selecting a transformer based on low initial cost (high losses) increases OPEX when transformer is idle or at very low load condition. On the other hand, selecting transformer with high initial cost (very low losses) unnecessarily increases the CAPEX when average load of the transformer is below 33%.

Unlike traditional distribution transformers (step down), the wind power step-up transformers provides higher scope for transformer design optimization due to the following conditions

  • Average plant load capacity of less than 33 %
  • Limited peak load (less than or equal to 110% of the transformer KVA)
  • Better repeatability of load cycles in wind transformers connected to single turbine for its lifetime (compared with step down distribution transformer serving multiple users with varying energy demands)

Prolec GE uses TOC method that helps in selecting the most economical transformer based on purchase price, average plant loading, losses, annual interest rate and electricity cost for the complete lifetime of the transformer.

Protection for transients and harmonics

Variable speed wind turbine generators are connected to the AC-DC-AC convertor circuit, which contribute harmonic voltages to the grid network affecting other equipment connected to the same grid. The transformer thus designed should mitigate the effect of harmonics which increases transformer losses. These excess losses causes hot spots reducing the transformer life span or causing immediate failure or fire.

Winding connected to the convertor circuit is ungrounded. Thus the transients on the HV side transfer to the LV side of the transformer which is high enough to fail LV windings and core insulation or to cause convertor circuit failures.

Prolec GE addresses the above issues by providing the electrostatic shield between LV and HV windings. The electrostatic ground shield also provides capacitive decoupling of the HV and LV windings, reducing of high-frequency disturbances.

Variation in wind loads

Generally wind speed varies by ~11% between hours and in some extreme cases the variation reached about 44% leading to fluctuation in wind power output, subjecting the transformer to continuous load variations (thermal cycling) thereby creating the following problems.

  • Thermal stress on the winding, clamping structure and seals, weakening transformer mechanical strength
  • Absorption of nitrogen gas forming bubble in dielectric oil, weakening the insulation dielectric strength

Prolec GE transformers are provided with efficient duct arrangement for efficient cooling to reduce the hot spot temperatures.

Short Circuit withstand capability

Wind generator should be capable of withstanding short circuit forces when the voltage in the grid is temporarily reduced due to fault or load changes. The generator is not allowed to disconnect from the system for disturbance of few cycle, as it leads to propagation of transient instabilities and causes local or system wide blackouts.

Therefore Prolec GE designs wind turbine transformers with short circuit withstanding capability for a few cycles to maintain network stability.

Compared to strip wound transformer, foil wound transformer has high short circuit withstanding capability due to absence of axial stress & improved balance between magnetic fluxes of primary and secondary winding.

System efficiency

Transformer is a product of high efficiency (~99%) and has no impact on the overall system performance. Asking for very low NLL or LL paves way for non compliant practices in the industry. When transformers are offered with tolerances (normally with sigma NLL of +/- 5%) the CAPEX advantage will be high.

Prolec GE recommends considering the efficiency of the total wind farm instead of considering efficiency of individual transformer.

Development of right specification is a joint task that end user and manufacturer should work closely together to obtain transformer design and feature that meets maximum reliability and performance requirements at lowest TOC.

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Three stars” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.


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Prolec GE Newsletter - November 2012

November 2012                  

Underlying secrets of procuring Power Transformers :

Electrical systems design needs extra care, precaution and factor of safety to achieve a reliable electrical distribution network. In transmission or distributionsubstations, nearly 50% of investment cost goes towards power transformers. Along with the cost angle, reliability of this product is of paramount importance for continuous power availability.

A transformer is 99% efficient and robust equipment which is critical for maintaining the grid balance.In India, it is believed that a transformeris performing well if there is no oil leakage or failure. However, this is a “myth”, asend users fail to check the compliance to efficiency and loss figuresguaranteed. Taking advantageof a non compliant transformer working normally without any failure, unscrupulousmanufacturers supply under rated or high losses transformers without the knowledge of the end user.In case of loss capitalization being considered by the customer, non compliant manufacturers declare unachievable losses or manipulate the GTP’s to become the lowest bidders.

The cost of transformer largely varies depending on weight and grade of core and copper used. This encourages non-complaint manufacturers to use of less material to gain cost benefits of ~7-15%. Import data from a major Indian port showed that more than one third of transformer core material imported in a year through that port was second quality.The Ministry of steel recently has released an amendment banning import of low grade CRGO steel used in transformers.

Another way of non compliance is manipulation of losses during inspection by doctoring the measuring instruments.Many non compliant manufacturers do not follow standards specified for testing thus making large errors, sometimes intentionally.There can be a difference of 4 to 5% with such practices, which includes, using shunts in measurement circuit and manipulation of heat run test (HRT), current& potential transformers and winding resistance measurement.

Unlike other power equipment,transformer efficiency is difficulttocheck at site. Hence concerns remain as below:

  • Whether losses committed and offered are same?
  • Whether temp rise when full losses occur will be as specified or not?
  • Whether core material specified to achieve particular losses has been supplied or not?
  • Whether flux density and current density limitations, if specified have been observed or not?

There by, the perception that “A given make of transformer has not failed and is successfully running” alone cannot be the criteria.

Case History : Recently a challenge test conducted at CPRI on 5 MVA and 8MVA transformers supplied by a non compliant manufacturer to Central Power Distribution of A.P Ltd showed that the losses of transformers exceeded from 30% to 100% over and above the losses guaranteed.

Prolec GE’srecommendations to Buyers:

  • Beforefloating an enquiry, contact reliable manufacturers to get recommended loss figures. Select reasonable losses based on the energy cost that is incurred,
  • Calculate capitalization values for NLL and LL considering the average load.
  • Insist for standard GTP where weight of bare copper and finished laminations is to be specified along with stray losses. Verify loss figures during design review,and check the quantityand grade of copper andcore lamination at manufacturing stage. Insist on core mill certificate.
  • Use ERDA or knowledgeable third party inspection agency who can question the test set up. Ensure to pick one transformer from the lot randomly and test at independent lab

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100kVA/11kV (including “Star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.

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Prolec GE Newsletter - October 2012

October 2012                     

Tamil Nadu unveils long awaited solar plan

Tamil Nadu government has rolled out its ambitious “Tamil Nadu Solar Energy Policy 2012”, in which the state’s solar power installed capacity additionis targeted to achieve 3000 MW by 2015 (next 3 years). For the state currently facing shortage of power, need of the hour is reliable, captive and modular source of power. This has created a hope among the power consumers and a new market for solar power companies. While the policy looks attractive, there are some concerns raised on the implementation of the policy.

They are:

  • Timely payment of Generation Based Incentive(GBI) for solar power by the state utility.
  • While the high tension(HT) consumers are mandated to meet the Solar Purchase Obligation(SPO), it is a question if the solar power generation will take off at the same pace by 2014.
  • With historical trend and expected decrease in solar panel prices, it is expected that the market will become more competitive,making it less attractive for investments in module manufacturing. Competition from Chinese make modules are also expected to intensify,thus pulling down the prices.
  • Decreasing trend in prices restrains investorsto buy modules in the later stages of the project leading to long project gestation period (case of Gujarat).
  • Land availability for large scale solar farms (2.5 hectare/MW) can raise acquisition issues

While the policy gives breathing space for the power consumers and push to the power sector in Tamil Nadu, it is a wait and watch situation as how the policy will take shape in future considering the above concerns.

Prolec GE “Techie talks”

Topic: Transformers for Solar Power, Respondent – Mr. A.K Dhagat – T&D Expert

What are the features required for transformers used for solar power application?

Unlike the conventional designs solar transformers are three winding transformers connected to a number of inverters and hence considered as special application transformers. Efficiency should be maximum at a normal loading rate of 30 percent as compared to conventional transformers which are loaded to 60 – 70% (depending on the application).

What are the prescribed losses for transformers used for solar applications?

There are many customers who ask solar transformers with very low no load loss(NLL), however, this increases the capex without giving any significant returns. Transformer is a product of high efficiency (~99%) and has no impact on the overall system performance. Asking for low NLL also paves way for non compliant practices in the industry. When transformers are offered with tolerances (normally with sigma NLL of +/- 5%) thecapex advantage will be high. Similarly loadloss(LL) can be comparatively higher. We recommend considering the efficiency of the total solar farm instead of considering efficiency ofindividual transformer.

What will be the required tapping range for solar applications?

Solar transformers have very less fluctuation in the loads as the inverters feed constant voltage. There are many customers who ask for +/-10% off circuit tapping ranges. However, needlessly it increases the cost, as the transformer will be designed for full load at negative tap. We recommend tapping range between +/-5% for solar power applications.

Should capitalization be considered for transformer selection?

It is important that capitalization is considered for solar transformers. However, the capitalization formula should be carefully selected. Plant load factor(PLF) is the key parameter and considering 30% PLF, capitalization of the load loss should be very low.

Are there any advantages of using dry type transformers for solar power?

Initial cost of dry type transformer is higher by 30 to 35% as compared to oil filled transformers. However, if we consider the cost of civil construction, cost of maintenance and end of life cost, dry type transformers works much cheaper compared to oil type transformers. We recommend switching with vacuum contactor fuse combination (up to 11kV)instead of vacuum circuit breakers, as this will reduce the cost of cabling and losses in cables thus improving the system efficiency.

Note : If interested to know more on the above topic, please mail to prolecgenews@prolec-geindia.com

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100kVA/11kV (including “Star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico

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Prolec GE Newsletter - September 2012

September 2012                  

Get proactive, become “Energy Efficient”

Increasing power cutsand high T&D losses have become major concerns for the Government of India. Current power sector scenario is alsocatalyzing the current economic slowdown. In this background there are several initiatives by Government of India mandating energy efficiency across various power consumer segments.Some of the main initiatives include

Perform, Achieve and Trade (PAT)

  • PAT promoted under National Mission on Enhanced Energy Efficiency (NMEEE) is a mandate introduced by Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE)to reduce energy consumption in energy intensive industries (Steel, Cement, Aluminum, Power, Fertilizer, Pulp and Paperetc.) to a prescribed benchmark (~ 5%) within 3 years.
  • A “gate to gate” approach on energy conservation
  • Currently 500 companies have been identified as top consumers of power, accounting for nearly 65 per cent of the energy consumption in the manufacturing sector.
  • Process flow as given below
  • Any company not meeting the PAT targets will have to pay a penalty or buy PAT certificate (Ecerts) from company which has surpassed their energy saving targets

Energy Conservation Building Codes (ECBC)

ECBC, introduced by BEE, sets minimum energy performance standards for commercial buildings that havean electrical connected load of 500 kWor more or a contract demand of 600 kVA or more.

The Central Government can prescribe ECBC for adoption in all the states of India, the State Governments have the power to amend ECBC to suit regional and local climatic conditions.

ECBC is expected to be mandated in the near future.

Distribution Transformer (11/0.433kV)-Standard industry losses vs ECBC losses

Load 50% 100%
Rating (KVA) StdVs ECBC NLL (W) LL (W) NLL (W) LL (W)
500 Standard 1000 2690 1000 7250
ECBC 500 1340 250 1800
630 Standard 1100 2970 1100 8800
ECBC 500 2000 500 4000
1000 Standard 1650 3420 1650 11700
ECBC 800 2240 800 5000
2000 Standard 2400 4740 2400 22500
ECBC 2100 3320 2100 11000
2500 Standard 3500 5290 3500 28000
ECBC 3000 3490 3000 12200

Cautioning end users on non compliance

Due to increasing pricing pressures there is a tendency amongst manufacturers to compromise on raw material quality and content. Manufacturers declare low losses/high efficiency in Guaranteed Technical Particulars (GTPs), but deliver transformers with much higher losses/lower efficiency.Thus energy conservation measures taken by the end user goes in vain. Proper testing and inspection of transformers (from raw material to end product) involving independent third party laboratories will help to an extent curbing such non compliant activities.

Prolec GE, a front runner in energy efficient transformer solutions

ProlecGE provides perfect solution to its end customers by offering energy efficient transformers. The star rated transformers manufactured by Prolec GE have been installed and is successfully functioning at various locations across Tamil Nadu. Prolec GE has obtained Star Rating certification from Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) in which requirements for low loss energy efficient transformer is met. Certification was awarded from the authority based on tests conducted at Government Laboratory.Prolec GE is also proactively introducing energy efficient open ventilated dry type (VPI) transformers complying with future ECBC norms.

With PAT already mandated and ECBC on the anvil, the customer preference towards energy efficient transformers has increased in the recent days. Prolec GE is ready to tap the market clearly understanding the customer needs and delivering compliant transformers with higher than expected quality.

About Prolec GE

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico

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Prolec GE Newsletter - August 2012

August 2012                     

Be fire safe, use dry type transformers:

Many of us still remember the Uphaar Cinema fire tragedy happened in New Delhi that killed 59 people. The source of fire was a distribution transformer which burst followed by transformer oil spillage. Smoke hence formed created opacity and suffocation that led to stampede. As a result, the Ministry of Power & Energy has mandated that only dry type transformers shall be used for installation inside the residential & commercial buildings [Indian Electricity Rules – 1956, amended with Rule No. 64 (2) (C) (II) in 2001]. Similar to existing mandates in Delhi and Mumbai, in the near future, all the state authorities are expected to mandate use of dry type transformers for indoor applications across major cities, inline with regulations in developed countries.

Fire accidents in such cases can be mitigated by using VPI/Open ventilated dry type (OVDT) transformers. VPI/OVDT transformers are mainly installed in places where there is a huge people gathering or prone to fire. These transformers use air as dielectric medium and are highly fire resistant. They are designed to withstand peak loads for a longer time with least risk to human life.

Prolec GE’s dry type transformers “ensuring safety at its best”:

Prolec GE is a leader in designing and manufacturing VPI/OVDT transformers in India. Technology collaboration with DuPont™, which supplies all the major insulation material, has helped Prolec GE in building robust and safe OVDT transformer for customer specific application. The windings are wrapped with 220 degree C class Nomex® and application of varnish during thermal curing makes the windings highly resistive to dust, humidity and pollution. Prolec GE’s VPI/OVDT transformers are highly energy efficient, compliant to upcoming building safety norms and ECBC mandates.

Advantages of Prolec GE’s VPI/ OVDT transformer technology:

      Safety Factors:

  • Nomex® is used in space suits and F1 races and is extremely fire resistant. It is used as main insulating material that makes OVDT transformer safe to be deployed in crowded or areas prone to fire
  • Improves fire safety by 30% due to higher optical transmission factor incase of fire

      Environmental Factors:

  • Adaptable to ECBC regulations which is expected to be mandated across India
  • 15% reduction in CO2 emission compared to oil type transformers

      Financial Factors:

  • 54% reduction in space consumption considering overall dimensions compared to oil type
  • 80% reduction in maintenance costs compared to oil type
  • 10% reduction in power losses considering ECBC norms compared to CRT
  • 98% of materials can be recycled with no land fills leading to disposal cost advantages compared with CRT

Prolec GE offers the best dry type transformer solution for demand across various sectors ensuring safety, quality and compliance to its esteemed customers.

Fire Test Behavior for 630kVA Transformers: Comparison between Silicon Oil, Cast Resin and Vacuum Pressure impregnated transformers

 

The above graph shows that VPI transformer is advantageous and does not propagate smoke and fire when compared with other available transformer technologies.

About Prolec GE:

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Three star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.

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Prolec GE Newsletter - July 2012

July 2012                     

Prolec GE saving Tamil Nadu from dark days through wind power:

Tamil Nadu has completely withdrawn load shedding in the coastal districts of Tirunelveli and Tuticorin, providing 24 hours power supply to the region. This was possible due to increased wind power generation output contributed to ease the power supply crisis. Prolec GE played a major role by ensuring power supply to the main grid through 9 numbers of 50MVA and 25MVA transformers installed in the area. Prolec GE is one among the very few transformer manufacturers in India able to satisfy the stringent performance requirements of transformers for wind industry such as withstanding high voltage fluctuations, low no load losses, varying turbine loads and thermal cycling. Prolec GE’s increasing wind transformer footprint has aided the state’s renewable energy goals.

Are you buying a transformer conforming to your specifications?

Uttar Pradesh power corporation Ltd (UPPCL) recently blacklisted six companies for supplying sub standard transformers. The Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh directed action against the companies supplying non compliant transformers, which aggravated power crisis in the state by increasing the power losses and failures.
One of the key reasons for supply of substandard transformers in the industry is due to usage of low quality raw materials. Cold rolled grain oriented (CRGO) steel is one of the critical raw material used in Transformers. India is the largest importer of second grade CRGO and allows its usage in transformers. Due to the cost advantage a few suppliers import this to ease their margin pressures. According to Ministry of Steel, India, 68 percent of transformers manufactured in India use substandard raw materials.

Some of the key contributors towards non-compliance include:

  • Usage of mill reject cores without proper mill certificates instead of prime core.
  • Declaring transformer losses that are unfeasible to achieve.
  • Manipulation of stray losses which cannot be checked at site

The above practices not only impact the lifetime and total cost of ownership (TCO) of the transformer, but also the complete network efficiency.

Illustration : A comparison was made with transformers of similar rating (1000 kVA) and loss parameters from two different manufacturers M1 and M2. M1 and M2 offered prices of INR 1,030,000 and INR 1,000,000 respectively. During testing, it was found that M2 has manipulated the losses (NLL and Stray losses of M2 was higher by 0.2 Kw and 0.3KW respectively) for cost advantage. The impact calculation for the lifetime of 15 years with a power factor of 85% revealed that, though M2’s initial price was less by INR 30,000, the total cost of ownership is higher by INR 230,000 as compared to M1. This clearly illustrates that the current practice of “L1” will be misleading in calculating the actual cost incurred by the end user, instead, total cost of ownership system should be followed.

Indian authorities off late are taking various steps to curb non compliance. Recently Government of India announced mandatory usage of BIS certification for CRGO imports into India. The gazette notification for this order is still awaited. Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) mandated usage of “star” rated transformers for distribution sector.

It is in this background that Prolec GE India stands out along with few others to state that it will offer fully compliant transformers. More and more customers are responding well to Prolec GE’s value proposition by appreciating what it delivers and by ordering quality transformers.

About Prolec GE:

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution segments. Prolec GE’s Mexico facility has a transformer manufacturing capacity of 60,000 MVA and manufacturing range from 5kVA to 1000 MVA. Prolec GE transformers are installed in 35 countries across the globe. The company also offers a complete range of transformers from 100 KVA/11 KV (including “Three star” rated) Distribution Transformers to 315MVA/400kV Large Power Transformers out of its two manufacturing facilities located in South India. The transformers are designed and manufactured as per the technology of Prolec GE Mexico.

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Prolec GE Newsletter - May 2012

May 2012                        

Prolec GE Powers into Fourth Year of Indian Transformer Industry

Prolec GE India hassuccessfully completed three years of journey in the Indian Transformer Industry and is now entering into the fourth year in May 2012.

We are proud to proclaim that we have successfully completed three years in the Indian Transformer industry after our entry in May 2009. From the time of origin until today, we have transferred many technology and process related improvements from our parent company in America to our manufacturing facilities in Chennai and Kanchipuram. Today, our facilities have emerged as one of the state of the art manufacturing set-up comparable with international standards. Thisjourney has been excitingand our highly motivated and knowledgeable team along with our esteemed client base has provided us the impetus to achieve success in Indian market. In this journey, we have achieved the following milestones :

  • We are the only transformer manufacturer in the world to implement Total Quality Management (TQM), Toyota Production System (TPS) and Employee Health and Safety (EHS) initiatives that helped in achieving most competitive lead times and increased employee safety.
  • We have improved the quality of our products and successfully completed audits on Quality Management System and TRS (Technical Regulation and Standards) with reference to ISO9001:2008 and GE Energy QMS requirements.
  • We have implemented mechanical design automation systems for achieving error free information with minimum cycle time
  • We have successfully penetrated into 400kV class power transformers and “three star” rated distribution transformers market thereby proving our technology expertise.
  • We have successfully exported large number of transformers to Middle East, Africa and Australia regions exceeding the requirements of their respective standards and specifications.
  • We have developed world class testing facilities with high accuracy equipment, making it one of the best amongst international player’s facilities.
  • We are the first in transformer industry to pioneer 24/7 hotline service for technical assistance and after sales service at anytime of the day.
  • We have successfully conducted several short circuit tests at various laboratories on our Distribution Transformers, Power Transformers and Open Ventilated Dry Type Transformers (OVDT).
  • We have shifted our OVDT facility from Thirumazhisai to Kanchipuram thereby increasing our installed capacity for dry type transformers.

With the above milestones we continue to serve our customers with utmost quality and reliable transformer products for their applications. Aiming for a long term association, we partner with our clients, which mark our commitment to Indian Transformer Industry.

About Prolec GE :

Prolec GE is one of the largest transformer manufacturers in the Americas, offering a complete line of transformer products that cater to Generation, Transmission, and Distribution industry segments. Prolec GE acquired a controlling stake of a Transformer manufacturer in Chennai, India in year 2009 and ever since has been steadily augmenting the range of transformer offerings in the Indian Market. Prolec GE offers complete range of transformers out of the Chennai operations – starting from 100 KVA/11 KV Distribution Transformers to Large Power Transformers up to 315 MVA/400 KV. The transformers are manufactured as per the Design and Technology of Prolec GE Mexico.

 

    © 2012 Indotech Transformers Ltd