Panel Builder System Integrator

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October 26, 2022

The way we generate power has been undergoing a radical shift over the last few years as our attention has turned more and more toward decarbonization, primarily using solar and wind power on a large scale. For these renewable technologies to be efficient and cost effective, the intermittency supply with solar and wind must be dealt with. The energy from these renewable sources needs to somehow be stored and released when needed most.

This is causing a shift in energy storage with a primary focus on using battery banks to store large amounts of energy. Lithium-ion battery energy storage systems are currently the dominant storage technology for large scale energy storage. Lithium-ion batteries gained popularity because they store a higher density of energy versus previous battery technologies. The widespread use of Lithium-Ion batteries attests to their value in multiple applications.

However, storing high density of energy does have inherent risks. High-energy Lithium-ion batteries contain highly flammable electrolytes that are proven to be prone to quick ignition and violent explosions in worst-case scenarios. According to several research efforts in the industry, thermal runaway is the primary risk related to the use of lithium-ion batteries. It is an occurrence caused by an abuse condition where the lithium-ion cell enters an uncontrollable high temperature rise, releasing energy stored in the battery (i.e.: gas, particulates, etc.). Thermal Runaway can also be caused by aging of battery or mechanical damage/defect.

Understanding those risks and utilizing advanced technology to manage those risks are keys to fulfilling a safe energy storage system operation. Obviously, these risks must be mitigated to ensure that damage to equipment, and potentially individuals, is minimal.

Since 2018, Siemens has completed multiple test programs with several global Lithium-ion battery manufacturers. Through that process, Siemens have come up with some realistic protection objectives for stationary Lithium-ion battery storage systems. The main goal is to protect the battery systems, the modules, as well as the cells against external (electrical) fires. It is crucial that cell fires be limited to individual cells or affected modules only. Then to prevent further spread, the propagation of thermal runaways beyond the affected module and secondary fires must also be prevented.

To achieve the goal above, a developing thermal runaway must be recognized as early as possible by the detection of electrolyte release and an adequate concentration of the extinguishing agent must be generated before the separator of the first battery cell breaks down to enable effective mitigation against cell-to-cell propagation.

With the FDA241 detector, Siemens can provide up to 28 minutes of advanced warning versus the specialty off-gas detection technology. The dual-wavelength detection technology used in the FDA241 unit provides early and reliable warning detection of the battery overheat conditions, well before actual thermal runaway condition begins.

The advance warning allows adequate time for mitigation steps to be taken, so the emergency can be contained. These steps include the battery charger shutdown and electrical isolation of batteries through the Battery Management System (BMS) and a release of the gaseous extinguishing systems to stop electrical fires, contain initial thermal runaway, prevent cell-to-cell propagation and the spread of secondary fires throughout the facility. Each of these steps is essential to prevent a potential catastrophic event.

In all, an effective fire protection concept should include the earliest possible detection, emergency shutdown, and an effective fire suppression system. Siemens’ solution checks each of these boxes.

That said, Siemens is the only company currently with an approved solution on the market. Their solution holds a VdS approval for effective protection of Lithium-ion batteries.

The world is changing and with that how we produce, store, distribute and use energy. For those pushing forward with innovative energy production and storage, Siemens offers a solution that protect your assets and ensure secure and safe operations.

To learn more, visit Siemens Fire protection for lithium-ion battery energy storage systems homepage or contact your local Siemens sales representative for more information.

ASK RITTAL SERIES
Episode 1 - A-Z of Busbar

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What are the advantages to using busbars in your panels?

The busbar is a very efficient part in the electrical panel that collects and transmits electrical energy as a conductor.  This conductor can pass very large currents.

Busbar allows for: 

  •    -   Reductions in the use of space relative to the panel and enclosure           (reduction in the amount of wiring). So, more equipment and parts             can be used in a panel.
  •    -   Easy troubleshooting in the event of switchgear interruption or                   failure.
  •    -   Time savings during both installation, maintenance, or upgrades               (ex.busbars are mostly used for branching inside panels, and,                   branching will be done by holes and bolts without using terminals).
  •    -   Integration of supplemental panel or enclosure elements to enhance or augment performance
  •    -   High electrical and mechanical strength. They last longer and don’t require regular replacement. They distribute power             more efficiently. Thus, reducing energy consumption.
  •    -   They’re also easily adaptable for renewable energy integration while offering extreme versatility for easy consumption                for many purposes.

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Sonepar Acquires Aztec Electrical Supply Inc.

Sonepar Acquires Aztec

Sonepar has announced that its wholly-owned Canadian subsidiary, Sonepar Canada, Inc. has acquired Aztec Electrical Supply Inc. With a strong presence in the province of Ontario, the acquisition of Aztec will strengthen Sonepar’s ability to grow their industrial business model across the Greater Toronto Area.

Founded in 2002, Aztec expanded its market presence across Ontario opening four branches located within Vaughan, Cambridge, Mississauga, and Burlington. Aztec will add over 100 associates to the Sonepar network in Canada and is expected to record sales revenues of over $70 million in 2022.

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Omron Announces REVTECH as Certified Systems Integrator Partner

 

Omron Partners with REVTECH

Omron Automation Americas recently announced REVTECH as a new partner in its Certified Systems Integrator program. Based near Quebec City, REVTECH has been providing robotic and automation solutions for companies of various sizes across industries.

REVTECH’s determination is unmatched when it comes to providing their customers with the industry’s most high-performing yet easy-to-use systems. The company focuses on production improvement, ROI, and easy technological transfer to users. They recently designed, built, and implemented a complex, multi-robot production cell using Omron robots, Sysmac control, and high-resolution FH vision, all in a safe package for the user.

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For a Multiplied Value Unified

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During the last few years, the Excelpro Group has welcomed AIA Automation, Envitech Automation and Conrad Lavoie Electrical, all of which have become ‘Member of the Excelpro Group’.

It is with great excitement that Excelpro announced that these three companies officially became Excelpro.

This decision is part of a strategy to enhance the Excelpro Group’s brand in its market.

These companies already collaborate on various client projects. This merger brings together the complementary strengths of the employees and ensures a global synergy of the activities throughout the Group.

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Q&A With HELU: Robotic Dress Packs

HELU Robotic Systems

Robots are an integral part of the manufacturing industry worldwide to the extent that they are indispensable. In production, robots and cobots frequently encounter each other, working and interacting side by side with humans, but also performing tasks independently.

The latest industrial robots move in a three-dimensional space and can therefore perform a wide variety of tasks. In order to ensure optimum system performance, the use of a dress pack is required to keep a robot running as frequently as possible. Regional Sales Manager Gordon Post discusses some of the questions he hears in the field about robotic cable protection systems.

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Can A Cobot Help Your End-of-Line Operations?

Cobot

 

If you’re challenged with labor issues in your packaging and palletizing area, you’re not alone.  These applications are often tedious and can lead to repetitive motion injuries. In a tight job market it’s especially difficult to fill jobs that people consider dull and strenuous. Now more than ever, companies are looking for automation solutions that will allow them to resolve labor issues and increase their flexibility to quickly adapt to market demands.

Can a cobot help your end-of-line operations?   Here are a few areas to consider:

Case Erecting - Some companies have very limited space or they have "odd ball" box sizes that can’t be erected with a traditional case erector.

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