ABB’s new DC switches bring photovoltaic installations to the next level

Breakthrough dual magnetic breaking technology delivers optimal performance in an efficient, compact design

Vaasa, Finland, November 5, 2014. ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, extends its range of OTDC switch disconnectors for DC applications up to 1,500 amperes (A). In addition to the unique two pole configuration for 1,000 voltage (V) DC, the OTDC portfolio includes now solutions for installations with the most special requirements such as 1,500 V DC voltages, multi-circuit switching and combined load outputs above 800 A.

Since 2011, when ABB launched the first switch-disconnector designed specifically for DC applications, the OTDC range has expanded significantly and become more versatile. With the newest additions, the OTDC DC switch range adapts to the all-time evolving requirements of photovoltaic industry. All of this while maintaining OTDC’s core features such as compactness, high efficiency and simplicity.

“With the OTDC switches, we can give added value to our customers in terms of flexibility, reliability and high quality”, says Niko Railo, head of product group Switches. “For example, in DC applications, it is challenging to provide reliable breaker power for all current levels without increasing product size or the complexity of the installation. OTDC overcomes this challenge thanks to our new dual magnetic breaking technology.”

For current levels over 100 A, ABB’s breakthrough dual magnetic breaking arc suppression technology delivers optimal performance with a new measure of simplicity and safety, occupying up to 50% less space while providing substantial energy savings and reduced wiring costs compared to other switches currently available in the market. These benefits are also present in the new OTDC switches.

One switch, multiple benefits
For installations with more than one circuit, OTDC allows control of two or three circuits simultaneously, with only one switch instead of two or three separate ones. 

High performance, compact solution
In some cases, the current levels in some of the largest main inverters may be higher than what OTDC range nominally covers. However, with the existing OTDC switches and ABB connection kits, it is possible to use a tested solution to create outputs of up to 1500 A (IEC) and 800 A (UL). These higher currents achieve up to 37% more compact space than corresponding products in the market. 

Ready for the future
Nowadays, many systems reach up to 1000 V DC, but one of the trends in photovoltaic industry is the evolution towards higher voltages. ABB is ready to respond to the demands of the global market: OTDC is now available for 1500 V DC from 315 to 500 A (IEC) and from 250 to 400 A (UL). 

OTDC from 16 to 32 A, which is now available also for UL508I, has an outstanding thermal performance. The rated currents do not need derating even beyond 60°C (140°F). This makes them ideally suited for hot climates, where OTDC offers reliable performance and energy efficiency.

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.


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