9 May 2017 – Brisbane Australia. Protection and Control Engineers do an admirable job. It is one of the few professions where the advance of technology is making their life more complicated, rather than solving their day to day challenges. With this unrestrained evolution of distribution networks, integration technology and renewable energy advances, these P&C engineers are the ones who are left with the unenviable task of making distribution networks reliable. These same engineers are a resilient bunch, eager to evolve their capability and learn new skills to solve old problems, so why should they expect anything less from their tools in the field?
NOJA Power’s RC series Recloser Controllers have been in service around the world for decades. These devices are the bedrock of Protection Engineering problem solving for thousands of Electricity Distribution Utilities. NOJA Power's RC Controllers with OSM Reclosers are the primary protection devices out on distribution feeders in over 85 countries today. Whilst the “firmware release notification” alerts march out of NOJA Power’s Service Department on a quarterly basis, the list of features becomes more and more impressive. It can be imagined that the utility engineer rolls their eyes as this email graces their inbox, “not another day worth of upgrades”, but it is important to remember why this functionality is available.
Truthfully, NOJA Power understands that they are the tool used for solving so many protection and control challenges in the modern distribution network. Every single new feature that is ever released in a NOJA Power RC controller is designed to solve a specific network challenge. Oftentimes, there is a case study and investigation available for each new feature that is released. These RC capabilities are a dynamic response to what the field needs, as they tap into their international expertise in solving world energy challenges, before offering the firmware upgrade solution to their users for free.
For the very first time, NOJA Power has released a comparison chart which shows in clear terms what capabilities are available with each controller. To access all the listed functionality for a controller, all that is required is a simple firmware upgrade. Furthermore, NOJA Power has recently unveiled an upgrade path, where any RC01 controller can be replaced with an RC10 or RC15 controller. This simple swap allows utilities to keep using their legacy OSM Recloser, but access the extensive list of new functionality available in the RC10 and RC15 devices.
“Today’s modern switchgear is expected to last 30 years and it generally does,” says NOJA Power Group Managing Director Neil O’Sullivan. “Modern electronics however generally become obsolete in 10 years so in order to continue to modernise networks it is necessary to update electronic controls 1 or 2 times over the life of the primary switchgear. NOJA Power recognises this and has available today RC10 and RC15 products that can be connected to our legacy 200 Series tanks originally delivered with RC01 controls. Our customers globally have the option to upgrade their RC01 controls to either RC10 or RC15 controls in order to take advantage of the latest functionality available.”
If you need help with your upgrade path, help with a new NOJA Power Protection or Control function, or a solution to your Distribution Network challenge, please contact us. NOJA Power are making a habit of providing innovative solutions to the challenges faced by utility partners around the world, and we look forward to working with you.