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Load & Fault Level upgrades

With our ever expanding usage of electricity, originally designed networks may no longer be capable of meeting today's requirements. Potential concerns being:

  • Individual circuits may now be underrated - increased transformer or motor ratings for instance
  • The original switchgear busbar current rating may be insufficient
  • The fault level at individual switchboard connection points may be exceeded due to increased capacity transformers, generators or motors

Circuit Upgrades

Increasing the current rating of individual circuits (i.e. 400A to 630A or 400A to 1250A) is the most cost effective solution for upgrading individual panel ratings when comparing to the purchase of new equipment where major capital spend can be involved.

Switchgear Support Ltd can upgrade any circuit of a given frame size for most Brush Switchgear, South Wales Switchgear or Hawker Siddeley Switchgear legacy products – whether single or double busbar switchgear.

By using original design component parts, the certified rating of the equipment is maintained.

Case study example – Guernsey Elec (400-1250A double busbar)

Fault Level Upgrades

Electricity networks designed in the second half of the 20th Century may have had very different fault level requirements than those being encountered today.

Many end users may believe that their only options are to either install new switchgear or install some means of fault limiting device (i.e. reactors).  However, in many instances, it is possible to re-rate the switchgear perfectly safely and in accordance with the original certified designs.

The extent of the modifications depends on the original product and required new fault rating.  This may mean a simple “replating” exercise or could involve any combination of the following :

One thing is absolutely certain, the end user must NEVER rely on original manufacturers sales literature that was very generic in its nature and stated “potential” fault ratings.  These brochures were not detailed enough to show the many variants within switchgear product ranges – especially the oil based switchgear ranges where many variants were commonplace (e.g. there were 17 variants of South Wales Switchgear D4 oil circuit breakers, with varying fault ratings). Switchgear Support Ltd can provide detailed fault level reports for a variety of Brush Switchgear, South Wales Switchgear or Hawker Siddeley Switchgear legacy products, that will outline:

  • Maximum fault rating of existing switchgear
  • Modifications required to existing switchgear to enhance fault rating to customers new fault levels

Switchgear Support Ltd Experience

For in excess of 20 years we have been providing solutions for legacy products, where our clients have believed their original HV switchgear ratings to be inadequate. In addition to having detailed product knowledge, we have comprehensive experience with switchgear design and type testing to latest International Standards.  

This provides Switchgear Support Ltd with a full understanding and appreciation of the requirements for fault level upgrades and circuit upgrades.

Case studies:

UK Power Networks (Brush VBAD Switchgear, South Wales C/D Switchgear)