A major EU economy’s central bank has installed Emax 2, ABB’s smart circuit breaker, to upgrade the backup power at its Rome headquarters, increasing security and system resilience. ABB’s all-in-one circuit breaker technology, which controls, protects and coordinates microgrids, has enabled the bank to downsize its back-up power investment while reinforcing its energy security strategy.
Banks use back-up generators to ensure they can operate as a standalone low-voltage microgrid if the utility power should fail for any reason. Having several layers of redundancy in their power supply guarantees that security systems stay online and that transactions can still proceed as normal. Uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems provide backup as the very last resort.
Giuseppe Scali, global product management manager for ABB’s low-voltage circuit breakers business, said: “Banks trust ABB technology to keep their systems up and running in an emergency. Emax 2 simplifies the control and protection coordination of microgrids. For critical power applications like banks, Emax 2 is the smartest way to give their energy supply an extra layer of resilience without additional genset investments or complex programming.”
Emax 2 provides advanced protection, programmable logic, full connectivity, easy integration and comprehensive microgrid energy management – all in one extraordinary device. If ever the bank needs to switch to its streamlined backup power, designed only for essential loads, the Emax 2’s embedded software delivers a load shedding strategy based on power and frequency measurements. According to pre-set priorities, non-critical loads are quickly disconnected while essential operations stay up and running. When utility power is restored, ABB’s breaker safely reconnects these loads automatically.
Marco Bielli, director of electrical panel-builder company Quadricom, said: “Installing additional gensets at a city center location is a huge investment however where every square meter of space is at a premium. A smart alternative was needed that required less installed power generation and layout space and yet enabled the bank to operate as a standalone microgrid for longer. ABB’s Emax 2 was the smart choice with no need to program other devices.”
Now if a utility power fault occurs, the first main backup power takes over. If that were to fail, the second smaller generator starts and the software embedded in the Emax 2 circuit breaker instantly disconnects the non-critical loads, communicating with the smaller ABB molded case circuit breakers downstream. As a result, the plant-reliability solution is more cost-effective, faster and simpler to implement compared to traditional approaches. Using ABB’s Emax 2 all-in-one technology, the power plant manages loads intelligently to increase its reliability and to prevent any downtime when it matters most.
Emax 2 is not only a circuit breaker with two complete sets of protection for power distribution and generation, but also a plant controller that guarantees coordination in both on-grid or off-grid situations. Thanks to patented embedded software, Emax 2 learns the power system’s behavior and adapts the plant load and generation configuration to electrical grid changes.
“From a power perspective, a bank is a plant that must never shut down,” added Fabio Monachesi, global product manager in ABB’s Protection and Connection business. “Remaining online at all times requires several layers of resilience to be built into the power strategy. In consultation with Quadricom, the bank’s facility managers decided to install two back-up power generators, using the load shedding technology in ABB’s Emax 2 circuit breaker avoids catastrophic blackout conditions and satisfies 24/7/365 banking operations.”
The bank cannot be named for confidentiality reasons.