UK distribution network operator (DNO) Northern Powergrid has started the trial of super low loss ground-mounted amorphous transformers (AMTs).

Designed to replace the old ground-mounted transformers, the AMT is capable of lowering core losses by up to 90%. This replacement would result in Northern Powergrid experiencing annual savings of up to 2GWh, the equivalent to saving 568t of carbon dioxide every year.

Northern Powergrid Smart Grid Development Engineer Aisha Ahmad said: “For too long, losses have been seen as an unavoidable reality of network operation, but new technology means we can now tackle the problem head-on.

“Trials like this will help build our understanding of losses, support decarbonisation and make Northern Powergrid’s network as efficient and reliable as possible.”

Northern Powergrid will carry out trials throughout 2020, which will involve sound testing, thermal imaging and power quality testing.

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By GlobalData

During the trial, five AMTs will be deployed at selected sites and monitored for their performance. The locations include Jarrow, Consett and Bishop Auckland, with an additional two sites in Hull.

Freedom Group has been contracted to install the five AMTs. The trial outcomes will help the DNO to decide on the technology inclusion, gain an understanding of AMTs’ noise impact and power quality.

The results will be shared with other DNOs and commercial and industrial users. Wilson Power Solutions has developed the e2 Super Low Loss AMTs.

Wilson Power Solutions marketing manager Ayah Alfawaris said: “We have over 1,000 installations of the Super Low Loss transformers across the UK. They save customers significant amounts of energy and tons of carbon dioxide. Northern Powergrid is the first DNO to install Super Low Loss ground-mounted AMTs.

“This project acts as a steppingstone to showcase how forward-thinking and investing in the right technology could reduce costs for the customer and ultimately help the UK reach its Net Zero target.”