ABB provides Qinghai Plateau environmental protection project with digital upgrade solution

ABB Ability™ Ekip UP rapidly retrofits existing power distribution system, reducing debugging time by more than 70%, investment costs by up to 30% and operation & maintenance costs by up to 20%.


ABB digital technology is enabling Qinghai Plateau Difeng Fertilizer Co., Ltd. (QPDF), an environmentally friendly manufacturer of organic fertilizer, to modernize its highly dispersed power distribution substations.

Using biochemical sludge from sewage treatment works as the raw material. meant production sites and power distribution substations are highly scattered, located next to different sewage treatment works

Measurement and monitoring functions were not considered during design of the project, so collection and basic communication & transmission devices were not in place. If the conventional local monitoring scheme is used, costly investment needs to be made in the software and hardware of the master station and many substations, while the long distances between devices can make monitoring and debugging a very time intensive exercise. Existing manual electrical equipment inspection is costly and inefficient, no longer suitable for modern production management.

ABB is therefore providing QPDF with its Ekip UP digital unit, part of ABB Ability™ smart power portfolio, to upgrade and renovate its existing system including the addition of advanced measurement, protection and control functions. In addition, Ekip UP enables the customer to manage (in a sophisticated manner) and conduct predictive maintenance on the switchgear assets and compact substations anytime, anywhere via remote connection. Calculations show that compared to conventional monitoring solutions, ABB Ability™ Ekip UP could shorten debugging time by more than 70 percent, reduce investment costs by up to 30 percent and operation & maintenance cost by up to 20 percent.

James Zhao, Local Business Manager of ABB Electrification, said: “By leveraging our digital expertise and innovation strength, ABB makes it possible to retrofit existing products with digital transformation technology. We are committed to making electrical devices easier to use, more reliable and connected, analyzing monitoring data in depth and helping our users improve power distribution stability, optimize processes and lower cost with digital technologies.” 

Over 50 million air circuit breakers and more than 300 million molded case circuit breakers of different brands were installed across the globe in the last decade. Most do not feature advanced monitoring or optimization functions. Common upgrade solutions available now require the customers to replace the whole circuit breaker, which is not only costly but also necessitates a change in the connection and the design of the switchgears. In addition, power outage caused by renovation is also a problem.

ABB Ability™ Ekip UP digital unit is compatible with switchgears of different brands. It’s not necessary to change the design of the switchgears. Old disconnectors or breakers could be easily upgraded and renovated by Ekip UP mounted on the door or DIN-rail depending on the site-switchgear needs. Downtime due to commissioning is minimized almost to zero.

ABB Ability™ Ekip UP digital unit supports direct connection with ABB Ability™ Electrical Distribution Control System (EDCS), enabling customers to monitor the power distribution system with intelligent terminals and to keep track of real time data, view historical data and receive alarm messages any time, anywhere without any external gateway. ABB Ability™ Ekip UP will usher in a new era of intelligent power distribution that is safer and more reliable and efficient.


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