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Hitachi Energy helps modernize Chile’s electricity grid with the country’s first digital substations
Transelec, the leading power transmission company in Chile, has selected Hitachi Energy to upgrade and modernize its substations in Alto Jahuel and Diego de Almagro. These first-of-their-kind projects will ensure safer, more reliable electricity transmission in the central and northern parts of the country aligning with Transelec’s strategy of enhancing its customer service through transformational digital projects .
As cornerstones of Chile’s power grid, the upgraded digital substations will help Transelec reduce interruption times and maintennance work, simplify documentation and safeguard the substation environment. The upgrade will also allow for remote monitoring of operations a capability highlighted as a goal and even more critical following the pandemic.
“The substations at Alto Jahuel and Diego de Almagro play a very important role in the national electricity transmission grid,” said Julián Pérez, control and telecommunications technical engineer of Transelec's Asset Management Department. “The upgrade projects were evaluated in the context of Transelec’s strategic focus on innovation and digital transformation, in addition to meeting certain key technical critieria including the space available for expansion as well as the need to replace copper wiring and legacy protection equipment,” he added.
“Digital substations provide operators with the benefits of a smaller footprint, reduced cost of installation and shorter commissioning time, in addition to enabling greater safety measures by keeping the control room separated from the high voltages in the field,” said Marcio Ferraz, Latin America hub manager for the Grid Automation business unit at Hitachi Energy. “Digital substations are core enablers to increase safety, productivity and reliability, providing grid operators with more information and a greater ability to monitor and optimize their power networks” he added.
With extensive experience in developing and implementing digital substation technologies, Hitachi Energy has delivered landmark projects worldwide, including the first 500 kV digital substation in South America and one of the largest in the world. Developed for Enel, that project supports the São Gonçalo solar photovoltaic plant, the largest in South America, located in Piauí in the northeast of Brazil.