ABB celebrates delivering its 500,000th Relion® 615 series relay to Formosa Plastics Group

ABB celebrates delivering its 500,000th Relion® 615 series relay to Formosa Plastics Group

In 2008 ABB launched the world’s first IEC 61850-based relay: Feeder protection and control REF615. Today 615 is ABB's bestselling series with an extensive range of innovative protection and control functionality, representing a wide application coverage.

In the beginning of the 21st century, ABB started to develop a brand new and innovative product range in line with emerging market requirements, resulting in the Relion® 615 protection and control series of relays. Key factors driving the development were fast Ethernet technology to enable a web-based user interface and communication-based protection and control solutions, together with introducing the world’s first, truly IEC 61850-based protection relay.  

One of many reasons for the widespread popularity of the 615 series, which has reached its 500,000 milestone, is its wide application coverage, ranging from feeder and line differential protection, through transformer, motor, generator, capacitor bank, interconnection and voltage protection, to automatic voltage regulation.

Another reason is the extensive range of innovative, state-of-the-art protection and control functionality, either with sensors or conventional instrument transformers. With integration of protection, control, monitoring and supervision in one relay, the 615 series represents a compact and versatile solution that is ideal for a variety of utility, industrial, and transport and infrastructure applications.

“The Relion 615 series is an excellent example of combining ABB’s in-depth technology expertise and long-standing experience with a sensitive and responsive approach to what the market is looking for,” said Matteo Caiti, global product group manager of ABB’s Control and Protection Products business. “We are proud to acknowledge that 615 has grown to become our bestselling series of protection and control relays with more than 500,000 units sold worldwide.”

Formosa Plastics Group (FPG) – one of the largest private corporate groups in Taiwan – has been relying on ABB for safe, smart and sustainable electrification for decades. Committed to sustainable business development, together with social health and prosperity towards a better tomorrow for all, FPG actively develops green energy technology, circular economy, health care, and education in Taiwan, adhering to the concept of equal emphasis on economic development and environmental protection. FPG is involved in industries ranging from oil refining, petrochemicals, plastics, fibers and textiles, to electronics, energy, steel-making, transportation, machinery, health care and biotechnology; its contribution to Taiwan’s economy is vital.

FPG is currently particularly interested in replacing its SPACOM relays, installed in industrial parks around the world, with new developments and already has roughly 25,000 Relion relays in use, with a predilection for the 615 series. This is also the reason why FPG chose to equip its new technical training center in Mailiao Industrial Park in Taiwan with 615 series relays – one of which is the 500,000th relay.

“We would like to congratulate ABB on its innovative product and reaching this significant milestone. We are delighted to be part of this celebration and deeply honored to install the 500,000th 615 series relay in our facilities,” said a spokesperson for FPG.

Within the near future, another 400 Relion 615 series relays – feeder (REF615), motor (REM615), capacitor bank (REV615), and voltage (REU615) protection and control – will be installed in medium and low-voltage panels in the petrochemical plant in Mailiao Industrial Park. FPG chose ABB for its ability to offer a complete solution and ensure a smooth transition during the upgrade of the substations and migration to the new, IEC 61850-based system. The comprehensive introduction to the new device and system, together with continuous availability of support throughout the life cycle also played an important part in the decision.

“In ABB we have found a reliable partner with great expertise and high-quality products delivered on time. We appreciate ABB’s immediate, invaluable technical support to solve in an instant any problem that we may encounter. ABB’s ability and willingness to truly listen to what the customer needs and to take that into account when designing future products is collaboration at its best,” continued the FPG spokesperson.

With full support for the IEC 61850 standard, communication is supervised – which makes it both fast and secure – and time and space-consuming wiring minimized – which saves money. In fact, 615 was the first relay in the world to introduce both fast GOOSE (Generic Object Oriented Substation Events) messaging and process bus with sampled values in the medium-voltage substation.

Since 2015, the 615 series offers ABB’s unique and ingenious solution for reliable and sensitive all-in-one earth-fault protection – the multifrequency admittance protection (MFA). Created in response to the requirements of today’s growing cable networks, this method ensures reliable protection also in compensated networks, irrespective of the type of earth fault.

“The ability to meet the rapidly changing market requirements with agility and flexibility is key at times when power distribution systems are undergoing a major evolution. We are convinced that our passion for driving innovative, technological advancements will ensure that the 615 series continues to support the increasing digitalization of the grid, by evolving alongside the power system,” said Matteo Caiti.


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