ABB provides major national media client with comprehensive electronic control

24th July 2009
ES Admin
ABB has been working with Mardix, the largest independent switchboard builder in the UK, to provide electrical control for a major UK media client. The project sees ABB providing all control and distribution equipment for Mardix switchgear being installed on site. The switchgear being installed includes a variety of Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) backup and generator supply switchboards, sub-mechanical switchboards, final distribution boards and mains low voltage (LV) incoming switchboards up to 6300A.
The Mardix mains LV switchboards have been certified by the Association of Short Circuit Testing (ASTA) up to 6300A – an achievement few switchboard manufacturers can claim. The switchboards are perfectly suited to handling large electrical loads for the media client’s studios. This capability was achieved through innovative switchboard design and a range of ABB electrical control equipment.

“We believe we are the first switchgear manufacturer to create a fully-rated, naturally air-cooled, ‘non-assisted’ 6300A system,” says Wayne Lewis, Director for Mardix. “We fully endorse an ASTA approach, and see it as enhanced peace of mind for clients who know that Mardix equipment has been subject to rigorous testing without failure”.

The Mardix switchboards utilise a range of ABB equipment including ABB’s EMAX air circuit breaker range, rated from 800A to 6300A, TMAX Moulded Case Circuit Breakers (MCCBs) from 100A to 1600A, Miniature Circuit Breakers (MCBs) S200s up to 63A and the panel mount OS range up to 400A. ABB is also handling the discrimination, coordination and selectivity aspects of the installation, which is designed to support the needs of the media client for the next 25 to 30 years.

“ABB equipment was chosen for its reliability. Any media company cannot afford to go off air for any length of time, so reliability is extremely important,” says Dave McWilliams, Account Manager for ABB’s low voltage products division, “We have vast experience in dealing with complex, high profile projects and have worked with Mardix on similar projects in the past.”

Each LV switchboard has been specifically developed to house the EMAX 6300A air circuit breakers. As such, Mardix has also developed a new cooling chamber specifically for the cooling requirements of the switchboards.

The ABB EMAX range’s design eliminates the disadvantages and limitations associated with air circuit breakers – the integrated design features advanced monitoring, protection and control functions that were previously performed by external devices. This combined functionality saves space within the switchboard and time because there is less equipment to install.

ABB’s MCBs and MCCBs provide protection against overload, short circuits and earth faults. The circuit breakers protect the switchboards from surges in current and the broadcaster’s equipment from stress and overloads.

The inclusion of ABB’s OS range provides the Mardix switchboards with outgoing protection and the ability to connect equipment in a flexible manner. The OS range is available in single-to-four pole versions and it is possible to connect from the front and side with vertical and horizontal mounting options. This flexibility allows more equipment to be fitted into the switchboards.

Equipment is currently being manufactured to go on the client’s site. The equipment will be added to a current installed base of ABB EMAX, OEs and legacy products that were fitted during phase one of the project to provide a fully integrated ABB installation that will control the studios and facilities on site. The integration of further ABB products will harmonise and coordinate products further.

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