BAE Systems wished for maintenance free switchgear and GenieEvo delivered

Schneider Electric has been awarded a £180,000 contract to supply BAE Systems with new GenieEvo, maintenance free switchgear panels together with commissioning services for the Company’s manufacturing facilities at Samlesbury in Lancashire.

BAE Systems purchased a total of seven GenieEvo switchgear panels rated at 11kV and is considering further product sourcing from Schneider Electric for other site developments. As well as the advanced features of the hardware, it was both the emphasis on teamwork and embedded expertise within Schneider Electric that secured the contract. The order includes Schneider Electric services such as shipment to site, product installation and commissioning.

BAE Systems as a global company engaged in the development, delivery and support of advanced defence and aerospace systems, operates in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Both its products and infrastructure must take account of capital and life cycle costs; delivering value for money at the same time as developing products with world beating performance.

One example is the Eurofighter Typhoon, the world’s most advanced swing-role combat aircraft. With a production contract for 707 aircraft, Eurofighter Typhoon is already in operational service with the Air Forces of Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, and has been ordered by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

BAE Systems recognises that its ability to meet customer’s needs and to be the premier global defence company is dependent on an extended enterprise of the supply chain; working in partnership with suppliers who offer agile, reliable and innovative products and services.

As a typical example, the BAE Systems plant at Samlesbury near Blackburn, Lancashire, required a number of Medium Voltage switchgear panels for new facilities for the site. Comprehensive selection procedures considered suppliers’ local production, established organisation and technical competence as well as commercial viability. As a result Schneider Electric’s GenieEvo product was selected. An audit visit to Schneider Electric’s production facility in Leeds confirmed to BAE Systems that the GenieEvo product ticked all the requirement boxes.

GenieEvo is the first medium voltage (MV) switchgear to offer virtually maintenance-free operation. Unlike conventional vacuum switchgear, the isolators are sealed in an earth screened cast resin enclosure containing only controlled air, which eliminates the need for regular cleaning of the copper contacts throughout the product’s entire life. The sturdy, metal cased design is an evolution of the original Genie gas insulated modular switchgear concept, which has found wide acceptance globally.

The modular nature of GenieEvo gives considerable flexibility; a list of six switchgear options and 18 protection and control modules allows a total of 67 panel combinations to be achieved, covering virtually any application. This means that panels can be fully engineered to exactly match the customer’s requirements, all built to Schneider Electric’s exacting quality standards and factory tested before delivery

The vacuum circuit breaker technology of GenieEvo further extends the applications of the Genie range. With the circuit breakers certified for 20,000 operations, GenieEvo is particularly suitable for applications that involve frequent switching, such as demanding utility, manufacturing process and site plant application.

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