ABB to provide wireless network for highest capacity wind farm in UK
The project is being developed in south Wales by Vattenfall. The full 76-turbine development, for which ABB is also providing the grid connection and the related electrical transmission infrastructure, is due for completion later this year and will be the highest capacity onshore wind farm in England and Wales, delivering up to 228 megawatts.
The two new substations will step up the voltage from 33 to 400 kilovolt (kV), ready to feed into a new 400 kV National Grid substation. Pole-mounted circuit television (CCTV) cameras around the perimeter fences of both substation sites will be connected into a highly resilient wireless mesh network using ABB’s wireless routers.
The two sites will be linked by optical fiber and connected to a control station with a network video recorder to provide recording and monitoring.
Physical and cyber security is critical for utility communication networks. ABB’s wireless routers are designed to cope with almost any physical challenge, a necessity when routers are routinely installed in outdoor locations in the field.
As the network grows, each smart router will automatically reconfigure itself, making expansion relatively simple. The mesh network design offers inherent reliability, as the network can handle any outage by redirecting data intelligently and seamlessly.
In addition to the wireless communication system, ABB is also supplying switchgear, transformers, and IEC 61850 compliant substation automation, control and protection equipment as part of the overall substation solution. ■