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POWER SUPPLY: Freedom To Run 'Without' Electricity


Recent Western Cape Business News

WHETHER your business is in the private or the public sector, the growing need for ‘power security’ is placing an increasing emphasis on standby solutions. In the past, this was seen as a short-term emergency back-up until the lights came on again, but the global trend is now redefining this view and today standalone power means energy for at least 24 hours.

As Rod Warnes, senior manager for Barloworld Power’s Turnkey Power division explains, it’s a different take on standby and a factor that has rippled across all industries that need to perform, come rain or shine. Barloworld Power is the exclusive southern African distributor of Cat diesel and gas engines and generators in southern Africa and is currently working on electrification projects across the board for public and private enterprises that need standby, prime and continuous power.

Take the 2010 Soccer World Cup as case in point,” says Warnes. “The regulating authority, FIFA, has laid down strict compliance standards that are non-negotiable and these aren’t restricted purely to the stadiums, but apply to the overall backup infrastructure which will support this amazing game.”

More specifically this applies to installations such as medical care facilities, police stations and public transport networks that need to operate 24/7, keeping people safe and getting them home,” Warnes continues.

In Cape Town, for example, the new Green Point Stadium constructed for 2010 will draw its standby electricity from one of two Cat 3516 generator sets (one always waiting in reserve), installed by Barloworld Power.

This is a soft start and stop solution, providing a seamless transfer of power to and from the national grid, in accordance with FIFA stipulations. FIFA’s requirement is that all games will run on generator power – guaranteeing no interruptions for live coverage,” explains Warnes. The turnkey solution provided by Barloworld Power includes a 20 000 litre underground diesel tank.

Meanwhile, as the fans await 2010 medical care ahead of this event is receiving the best treatment as the Department of Health progressively upgrades government hospitals across the country. Within Gauteng, Barloworld Power has been responsible for revamping emergency standby power systems at various facilities.

To safeguard against outages hospitals are being equipped with self-contained standalone power generation systems enabling them to run independently as a ‘city within a city’,” says Warnes.

Projects ongoing or recently completed include Johannesburg General, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital (the world’s largest hospital, with over 3 200 beds), Leratong Hospital, and George Makhuri Hospital working as a sub-contractor to BEE consulting engineers, New Heights. Typical installations comprise Cat gensets in the 800 to 1 000 kVA band, with the exception of Johannesburg General, which will be in the 1 600 kVA range.

Barloworld Power will also be providing a full turnkey solution for Jabulani Hospital in Soweto, which will include an EIA, and the installation of a bulk fuel tank.

Meanwhile as South Africa’s medial sector gears up to ensure continuity of supply, transportation parastatal, Transnet, has installed a comprehensive harbour control package at the Port of Ngqura north of Port Elizabeth.

Barloworld Power’s scope of works entailed the supply of four Cat 3516 generator sets, each with a capacity of 2 500 kVA, for the running of the harbour’s four crane gantries; plus two smaller Cat 500 engines to supply power to the harbour’s control buildings.

Comments Turnkey Power sales engineer, Bruce de Ridder: “During a blackout, the Cat engines fire up instantly and the gantries continue working without any discernible loss of power. For ports worldwide, this is an essential requirement to ensure that ships loading or offloading cargo don’t experience delays during scheduled docking timeframes.”

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