Dry-type Transformers Ensure Safety at LNG Camp

Dry-type transformers supplied by specialist company Trafo Power Solutions are ensuring the safe and reliable operation of substations in a construction camp at a large liquified natural gas (LNG) project in northern Mozambique.

According to David Claassen, managing director of Trafo Power Solutions, 18 dry-type transformers were included in modular substations built in South Africa and shipped to site recently. The company is in a strategic partnership with leading Italian transformer manufacturer TMC Transformers, and is competing at the highest level with other global OEMs.

“These substations are for the project’s first construction camp of about 9,500 contractors,”  Claassen says. “Our transformers have been specially designed for the high ambient temperatures in northern Mozambique.”

1250kVA cast resin transformer installed inside modular substation.
1250kVA cast resin transformer installed inside modular substation.

Ranging from 500 kVA to 1250 kVA, the temperature of these units will rise to a maximum of only 80⁰C when under full load. With Class-H insulation on both the medium voltage (MV) and low voltage (LV) windings, they will withstand a temperature of 180⁰C. This is considerably more than the potential 40⁰C ambient temperature in the tropics plus the 80⁰C temperature rise. The transformers are also designed for levels of humidity up to 95%.

He highlights that the safety advantages of dry-type transformers allow them to be used in this application. As they do not contain oil – which is the usual coolant in conventional transformers – they pose no fire, explosion or environmental hazard.

“A transformer containing oil would present a significant risk in a construction camp accommodating thousands of people in close proximity,” he says. “The safety level of dry-type transformers also means that they can be used in enclosed spaces like modular substations. The minimal maintenance required is an added advantage, being located on such a remote site.”

Claassen notes that the global competition to supply this mammoth project has been intense, and points to the vital partnership between the local knowledge and experience of Trafo Power Solutions, and the technology and expertise of TMC Transformers.

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