ABB's intelligent power supply helps major sporting events go smoothly

Custom made Kabeldon distribution cabinets handle large amounts of power safely in the most demanding environments.


Staging a big sporting event can put a town or city on the map for decades. A big part of making sure things go smoothly is getting the basics right. Scaling up the power supply intelligently and safely is one of the most fundamental requirements.

In 2015 Sweden hosted the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships at Lugnet in Falun, the country’s national ski stadium. As sporting complexes go, Lugnet is unique. Of the 75 skiing disciplines recognized by the Swedish Sports Federation, 65 can be held at Lugnet. And all in close proximity to each other. Spectators can follow cross-country skiers along their trail and then turn to see ski jumping.

With more than two events per weekend on average held all year round, Lugnet was already a popular destination with Swedes. On a normal Saturday or Sunday, the arena consumes around 1.9 MWh of energy.

During the Championships, with 700 athletes from 58 nations competing for 21 world championship titles, energy consumption increased to 10 MWh.

The challenge

In terms of infrastructure, catering for the hundreds of thousands of spectators isn’t the biggest challenge: it’s the requirements of the competitors and their support teams that presents the real test.

At the Championships, each nation competing had its own special preparation area, effectively a small heated factory where skis are honed, waxed and polished using custom machinery to give competitors the smoothest possible run. Some also brought trailers to provide their people with extra space and equipment. The Norwegian team set-up is the largest, requiring 63A (Amps), but most teams need 32A, while a few of the smaller teams only require 16A.

It all adds up to a lot of extra power demand. To meet the demands of this temporary factory, the World Ski Championship organizers worked with ABB’s local partner Elfördel of Alingsås.

ABB solution

ABB Alingsås, in collaboration with Elfördel, delivered custom made Kabeldon distribution boards for the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Falun, Sweden. The cabinets powered the 58 national teams’ individual ski preparation workshops. During the event, the energy consumption increased fivefold to 10 MWh.

Robust power outlets on the outside made it possible for teams to connect to power safely without opening the cabinets.

“Space is always at a premium at events like this,” said Johansson. “ABB’s Kabeldon cabinets are real space-savers and they present the right image. You want people to have confidence in the safety of their surroundings, which is important when hosting an event like this.”

The 2015 Nordic World Ski Championships concluded on 1st March 2015 after 12 successful days of competition. Its organizers say the event exceeded expectations in every aspect. People saw that Falun is a town that dares to invest and develop and in the process has established itself as an international destination.

ABB is proud to have played a role in ensuring things went smoothly.

Stefan Johansson from Elfördel said: ”We immediately understood the need for safety and simplicity in the face of some pretty tough weather conditions. We recommended custom made versions of ABB’s Kabeldon distribution cabinets - they handle large amounts of power safely as well as Sweden’s -30°C winter temperatures.”

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