PADCON and Jurchen Technology conquer the Australian market
- Monitoring and control of Australia’s largest PV power plant
- State-of-the art cyber security concepts
- Innovative PEG substructure reduces costs and installation time
- Come and see for yourself from today at Intersolar Europe in Munich
Kitzingen, Germany – PADCON and Jurchen Technology, two German companies based in the Lower Franconia town of Kitzingen, are capturing the Australian market: PADCON is providing the technology required to monitor and control what will soon be Australia’s biggest solar power plant. Jurchen Technology is supplying the DC wiring system for the solar power plant. A total of around 80,000 metres of cable and about 40,000 solar plugs are being installed. In addition, Jurchen Technology is busy securing new orders for installation of its PEG system down under. Both companies will be showcasing their products at Intersolar Europe in Munich from today.
Monitoring and control of Australia’s largest PV power plant
“We monitor PV plants with more than three gigawatts of installed capacity for customers all over the world”, says Constantin Wenzlik, CEO of PADCON GmbH. “Limondale is another major project we have added to our portfolio. For this project alone, we can capture around 24,000 plant parameters, which will not only help control but also protect the entire plant.”
The Limondale solar power plant of innogy SE is currently being built in Balranald, New South Wales. When completed, it will have an installed capacity of 349 megawatts (MW). Start of full commercial operation is anticipated to be mid-2020. Capture of the individual performance parameters occurs via 58 decentralised data loggers which in turn communicate with a central SCADA unit. As well as data collection, processing and alarm functions, this server rack solution features a redundant back-up system and an onsite human-machine interface – or an operator interface which gives on-site operating and maintenance teams access to the plant’s live data. Remote control of the plant and 1st/2nd tier support is provided by the PADCON Control Centre. Thanks to their 24/7 operation, plants like these can be monitored worldwide and in all time zones from the company’s base in the Lower Franconian town of Kitzingen (Bavaria), while local teams receive on-site support. With SCADA installations in 21 countries, PADCON is one of world’s biggest and most experienced providers of SCADA systems for PV power plants.
PADCON offers state-of-the-art cyber security concepts
Although there are no legal guidelines in Australia yet for how well PV power plants of this magnitude need to be protected from cyberattacks, innogy is drawing on PADCON’s expertise for Limondale and has opted for a state-of-the-art cyber security concept. PADCON has brought its experience of completing projects with more than 300 MW of installed capacity from Israel to down under. “PV plants are generally well protected from burglary and theft. But a further and probably greater threat is the kind that lurks online”, says Constantin Wenzlik. “This means cyber security is something that needs to be built into all projects from the very start, and at all levels – the PV plant, data centre and, of course, at the user level too.”
PEG substructure enables low electricity-generation costs and a high degree of space utilisation
“What drives up the construction costs of a photovoltaic power plant? In a nutshell, it is a combination of the construction period, the material costs and the use of machinery. In developing the PEG substructure, we optimised all three of these factors. The result is a simple and unique solution – which is not just in high demand with customers in Australia”, says Michael Jurchen, CEO of Jurchen Technology GmbH.
Jurchen Technology has already supplied the PEG system for various locations in Germany, as well as Israel, Africa and the USA. But there is an increasing demand in the Australian market in particular for this unique substructure. Jurchen Technology has supplied plants to Australia with a total of 50 MW of capacity. A further plant with 3.7 MW of capacity is being built with Dareton in the New South Wales region. In early May, Jurchen Technology also received another request to erect a PEG plant with an installed capacity of 25 MW.
As Michael Jurchen explains: “It is no surprise that more and more Australian customers are opting for this innovative substructure. For all the benefits of this system really come into their own in Australia.”
The PEG substructure is a low-height solution, which sits on slender steel slats instead of high, solid-steel girders. The lightweight construction means no foundations are required. This reduces the amount of materials required to less than 50 percent of any conventional solution. Less material and simple construction also lead to reduced transport costs, which is a significant benefit considering the huge distances that need to be covered in Australia. Furthermore, no cable trenches or concrete work is required, which reduces the need for heavy machinery. What’s more, the labour costs required for such a quick installation job are much lower too. “With this PEG substructure we can significantly reduce the overall costs – by over 40 percent in terms of the investment costs and 20 percent in terms of the running costs”, says Michael Jurchen.
Thanks to the unique design, this PEG system is adaptable to individual customer requirements, making it suitable for installation anywhere in the world. With the exception of the “ground pegs”, the entire construction process, including DC wiring, is executed above ground, which means it can be installed in all kinds of different terrain. For instance, the system is suitable for power generation in remote areas with difficult access or areas with size limitations or narrow profiles. The size of the plant is also easily scalable. Major PV power plants in the multi-megawatt range are equally as achievable as small to medium-sized solar power plants with just ten kilowatts peak output for commercial and industrial purposes.
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We would be happy to demonstrate our concepts to you in person at Intersolar Europe in Munich.
Come and see us at the fair in Hall A2, Stand 414.