Advanced Contact Technology For Switchgears

Louise Smyth

In the northwest of China, the city of Xi’an was the capital of the Qin Dynasty, the first Chinese unified empire. From here you can discover traditional Chinese landmarks such as the terracotta army or the starting point of the Silk Road. Today, with over seven million inhabitants, the city is also the research, development, production and sales location for one of China’s largest switchgear manufacturers. Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus Co. Ltd. has more than 50 years of experience in designing high-voltage equipment. Based on advanced technologies, its products are known for their reliability and used worldwide.

Gas Insulated Switchgears (GIS)

Gas insulated switchgears (GIS) are more reliable in harsh environment, clearly require less space with a footprint as much as 70% smaller and are cost effective in operation due to less maintenance. Pluggable connections allow for thermal expansion in response to temperature fluctuation and facilitate the design of smooth and rounded shapes to minimise the electrical field strength. This results in higher withstand voltage and also makes for shorter insulation distances or smaller switchgear sizes. Above all, pluggable connection solutions reduce assembly and maintenance costs.

The increasing demand for energy and the associated expansion of existing power grids call for powerful and highly dependable equipment. The miniaturisation of installations and systems requires a reduction in size of all machinery and components without compromise in performance. At the same time, energy suppliers and power stations pay very close attention to their operating and maintenance costs.

The challenge for Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus is to provide very reliable, high-power but still economical equipment. Always in search of ways to improve its design concepts, the firm was looking for a space-saving, extremely solid contact element with high performance characteristics.

Higher Performance and Low-Loss Energy Transfer

The latest Stäubli innovation in its electrical connectors’ portfolio piqued the engineers’ interest at Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus. The Multilam ML-CUX is a two-component contact element with “stretchable” design, and is compact and flexible.

This new contact element provides high performance and low-loss energy transfer. The Stäubli contact technology scores with excellent and constant current-carrying capacity as well as minimal transition resistance due to its sophisticated construction technique.

The design of the ML-CUX contact element allows for installations with very little space. Based on its features and functionality, fewer contact elements are required for the same or higher power, enabling a more compact system design with less heating. For its latest series of innovative high voltage GIS products, Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus has successfully implemented the new Multilam flexo ML-CUX contact elements in various highly demanding busbars.

By using the latest contact technology, Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus increases the innovation level of its GIS portfolio.

The functionality, the excellent, constant and long-life performance as well as the product dimension fully convinced the experts at Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus. Thus, the company’s customers benefit from compact, reliable and powerful GIS switchgear equipment, on top of a positive impact on their total cost of ownership.

“We are very happy with the new contact element from Stäubli. With excellent current carrying capacity and a compact design, ML-CUX carries higher currents in little space. Compared with traditional contact elements, it allows a higher compensation of large tolerance, which is another innovative feature,” confirms Weiwei Yang, the product director at Xi’an XD High Voltage Apparatus.

Oliver Semling is with Stäubli.