Smart grid

Making the energy of the future possible today. Smart electrical enclosures – smart thermal management.

Making the energy of the future possible today.

A smart grid is an electricity network that uses digital and other advanced technologies to monitor and manage the transport of electricity from all generation sources to meet the varying electricity demands of end users. Smart grids coordinate the needs and capabilities of all generators, grid operators, end users and electricity market stakeholders to operate all parts of the system as efficiently as possible, minimising costs and environmental impacts while maximising system reliability, resilience and stability. 

European and US utilities with ambitious strategic plans to become digital companies lead the way in spending, innovation and deployment for smart electricity networks.
In 2020, the State Grid Corporation of China also announced plans to invest ~CNY 25 billion (USD 3.5 billion) in digital infrastructure to support tech-based projects as part of efforts to revitalise the economy. In making this transition, some players already relied on our thermal management technology for electrical enclosures.

Smart electrical enclosures – smart thermal management.

Huge ultra-high voltage transmission routes transmit wind and water energy to megacities. Digital transformer stations play a vital role in developing the intelligent transport network. Their gas-insulated switching systems, voltage and current converters are fitted with smart electrical enclosures which contain components for communicating with the control centre, amongst other features. The fittings for these electrical enclosures include specially developed cooling units from Pfannenberg. Specially equipped cooling units are responsible for providing thermal management for the electric components in the smart electrical enclosures. To enable them to be integrated into the communication system of the control centre, they have an intelligent control system and a RS 485 interface for serial high-speed data transfer.

Integrated self-diagnosis minimises the need for maintenance, which the unit communicates to the centre if necessary. Long air ducting enables perfect airflow through the electrical enclosure and eliminates hot spots. The robust cooling units are supplied in a stainless steel housing and, thanks to a capacitor with especially wide fin spacing, deliver highly effective protection against severely contaminated and aggressive ambient air. Since the smart electrical enclosures are generally located outdoors and are exposed to temperature and weather fluctuations, the cooling units have integrated heating. This means that the interior of the electrical enclosure can be protected against corrosion, even in winter and in a humid climate and that temperature can be maintained continuously at a level ideal for the electronic components.

Maximum control centre availability

The digital transformer stations in the expanding smart grids are equipped with communication-enabled control centres. These are supplied in the form of fully equipped containers. The cooling of its sophisticated electronics is done by powerful outdoor-proof cooling units with respective communications interfaces.

The internet of energy

Creating intelligent, communication-enabled and flexible power grids is regarded as one of the greatest technical challenges of our time. As a leading company in the field of industrial thermal management, we offer solutions for that already today. Across the world, we support the development of smart grids with our innovations – on the way to a global internet of energy.