Swiss power and automation technology ABB has won contracts from Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) for substations to supply electricity to King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC).

Under the contract, which is worth more than $60m, ABB will design, supply, install and commission an expansion of the 380kV Haramain high-speed railway (HHR3) substation featuring the compact gas-insulated switchgear (GIS) technology, which supplies electricity to KAEC at 110kV, ensuring reliability.

ABB claims the compact GIS technology offer several benefits including minimising the substation footprint and increasing transmission capacity.

The scope of the contract also includes the supply of control and protection equipment, auxiliary systems and substation automation equipment compliant with the international IEC61850 standard to allow monitoring and control of the substations from a remote control center.

"The compact GIS technology offer several benefits including minimising the substation footprint and increasing transmission capacity."

Substations are the key features for transmission and distribution of electrical energy that transform voltage levels, ensuring reliability and efficiency. They also include equipment that protects and controls the flow of electrical power, ABB claims.

KAEC covering a total development area of 173km2 along the coast of the Red Sea, around 100km north of Jeddah, is likely to create up to one million jobs in the country.

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KAEC is part of Saudi Arabia’s programme to make the kingdom one the world’s top ten investment hubs, attracting foreign investment to help diversify its oil-dominant economy.

ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer said the need to develop reliable and efficient power infrastructure in the Middle East is an important growth driver for the company.

"We have a proven track record in Saudi Arabia and are pleased to continue supporting the development of the country’s power network. These substations will strengthen the transmission grid and boost power supplies to support economic growth," said Spiesshofer.

Image: Similar GIS installation. Photo: courtesy of ABB.