GE’s Leading Utility Solutions Help Minimize Safety Concerns across Distribution Networks without Compromise
- SUPERBUTE™ Instrument Transformers, Safe-NET Transformers and UL-Certified Smart Meters Contribute to a Safer Distribution Network
- Technology Innovations Illustrate GE’s Commitment to the Safety of Those Who Come in Contact with High-Voltage Equipment—from Personnel to Pedestrians
- Solutions on Display Today at Booth #2113 at the 2015 DistribuTECH Conference and Exhibition
SAN DIEGO – February 3, 2015 – Improving the efficiency and resiliency of electrical transmission and distribution networks is important to meet increased demands. At the same time, ensuring the highest level of safety possible for installation crews, maintenance personnel and individuals that may come in close proximity to high-voltage equipment is essential. Understanding these needs, GE’s Digital Energy business (NYSE: GE) developed solutions that are capable of improving safety conditions across entire electrical distribution networks – without compromising performance.
“Whenever electrical current is present, especially at high voltages and in large-scale applications, safety is a concern. At GE, we’re committed to improving safety conditions for electrical workers, utility maintenance personnel and, of course, for pedestrians walking near or under electrical infrastructure,” said Kerry Evans, director, strategic marketing, GE’s Digital Energy business. “Products like our Safe-NET network transformers and our SUPERBUTE™ dry-type transformers have been designed with this mission in mind, helping to minimize and contain high-energy events when and if they occur.”
Since 1955, GE’s SUPERBUTE dry-type instrument transformers have provided utilities with numerous safety and total-cost-of-ownership benefits. GE’s latest SUPERBUTE current and voltage transformer offerings feature an internal insulation made from cycloaliphatic epoxy resin that is encapsulated in tough, elastic butyl rubber. This GE-proprietary butyl rubber formula (HyBute 60) and the unit’s unique internal lattice-type winding combine to help dampen and minimize the impact of high-energy events that could otherwise create major safety concerns. The resilient butyl rubber insulation allows for a passive and self-contained failure mode, minimizing risks including porcelain or metal projectiles and issues that can arise when failures occur in typical oil-filled units – such as oil spills or fire hazards. In addition, GE’s SUPERBUTE transformers have been designed and tested above and beyond IEEE C57.13 requirements.
GE’s Safe-NET network transformers’ patented tank design improves the strength of the transformer – making it two- to three-times stronger than a traditional network transformer. This added strength allows for most high-energy events to be contained within the tank without rupture, providing improved safety for nearby pedestrians. The transformers’ exclusive tank design exceeds tank pressure requirements laid out in the ANSI/IEEE C57.12.40 standard and has been validated by a third party.
Improving the safety of a transmission and distribution network extends far beyond just transformers. In addition to its two transformer offerings, GE also recently introduced its UL-certified smart meters. In 2014, UL published the Standard for Safety for Electric Utility Meters, outlining requirements for electric shock, fire, mechanical and radio-frequency emissions aspects for all electric utility meters. Shortly after – in April 2014 – GE’s residential smart meters became the first meters in the industry to meet these rigorous standards and to receive the UL certification for safety. Toward the end of the year, GE’s commercial and industrial smart meters also received the prestigious certification.
“Our UL-certified smart meters enable us to provide utilities with an added level of confidence surrounding the safety and functionality of their metering systems,” said Edward Myszka, general manager, meters, GE’s Digital Energy business. “The recent certification of these meters is just another example of how GE is working to improve safety conditions across entire utility transmission and distribution networks.”
GE’s solutions are on display today at the DistribuTECH Conference and Exhibition, which is taking place February 3-5 in San Diego.