Enhanced for extreme applications


The new Rittal VX25 large enclosure system delivers significantly enhanced value to electrical engineering companies thanks to its technical features, ease of assembly and high levels of safety.  Now, new versions of the VX25 are available in stainless steel and NEMA 4X to enhance corrosion protection and to ensure the equipment within it is shielded from dust, as well as from splashes and jets of water.

fri170433195 VX 25 stainless steel and NEMA 4X

The new Rittal VX25 large enclosure system is now available in stainless steel to deliver the highest level of corrosion resistance. The frame structure, doors, panels and the gland plate, as well as all the external parts such as 180° hinges and comfort handle variants, are all made of stainless steel.

While the sheet steel and stainless-steel enclosure types have IP 55 and NEMA 12 protection categories as default, the optional NEMA 4X version with its corresponding IP 66 category protection offers greater protection. This means that the electrical and electronic equipment in the VX25 is protected from dust, water splashes and jets, even in the most demanding of environments.

In order to achieve the high NEMA 4X protection category, the enclosure underwent, among other things, a water jet test. This procedure (“hose-down” test) involved examining any gaps with seals for leaks using a jet of water with a flow rate of over 240 litres per minute for a test period of 40 min/30 s (6 mm/s per seal length).  The tests confirmed that no water would penetrate the enclosure, under comparable conditions.

In addition, the tests included a check of the dust protection, corrosion resistance, and protection against damage caused by external ice formation.

The two VX25 enclosure variants have an almost identical design, which means that the interior engineering of the stainless-steel enclosures can also be applied, unchanged, to the NEMA 4X enclosures, saving electrical engineering companies both time and money.

Any requirement for energy-efficient cooling of VX25 stainless steel enclosures can be provided through the new Blue e+ cooling units, which are also available in stainless steel.

Further information at www.rittal.co.uk and www.friedhelm-loh-group.com or on twitter @rittal_ltd.     


Rittal’s Edge Solutions at DCW 2019

The revolution that is ‘edge’ will be front and centre on Rittal’s Stand #D610 at Data Centre World, London, from 12-13 March 2019.

The products on display will include the company’s Edge Data Centre which offers offer an end-to-end product with standardised, preconfigured IT infrastructure. 

Also at the show will be LCP DX cooling solutions and the company’s innovative RiMatrix Containerised Data Centre.

The advance of edge computing, which essentially provides computing resources at the perimeter of a given network, has been rapid as a consequence of growing technological demands for low latency, local data processing and high autonomy of infrastructure, system-wide security and high bandwidth.   The focus is typically on the immediate processing capacity required at the source of data making it as fast and secure as possible.

The need for edge computing can easily be seen in “smart” production systems, where sensors and actuators continually relay information on the status of processes and infrastructure. This forms the basis for innovative services such as alerts, predictive maintenance, and machine self-optimisation, delivered by the company’s IT department in real time. For this to happen, and for quick responses to events and anomalies, it’s critical to have low latency between production and the IT infrastructure.

fri130404700 Rittal Edge Data centres-2.jpg

Clive Partridge, Rittal’s Technical Manager for IT Infrastructure advises: “DCW is always a very busy show for us and we’re delighted to be able to showcase such an exciting portfolio of products, all designed to help customers take advantage of innovations such as edge computing.

“Our solutions are designed to be implemented rapidly and cost-effectively, thereby paving the way for Industry 4.0 applications.  Their modular construction creates huge flexibility for customers.  They can be installed in an IT security room, or be containerised like our RiMatrix Containerised Data Centre, allowing it to be located wherever it is required.

RiMatrix Balanced Cloud Centre

“When combined with the as-a-service offering that Rittal jointly provides with iNNOVO Cloud, the Rittal Edge Data Centre provides a complete, one-stop solution for enterprises of all sizes.”

Further information on all Rittal’s edge products can be found at www.rittal.co.uk and www.friedhelm-loh-group.com or on twitter @rittal_ltd.

Visit Rittal at DCW (Excel, London, 12-13 March 2019) on Stand D610 to find out how the industry leading experts can help you delivery your IT requirements.

Greater Security in Manufacturing IT


By Paresh Kansara, Rittal’s Product Manager for Industrial & Outdoor Enclosures

Rittal’s teams work closely with leading industrial companies to create IT infrastructures for use with Industry 4.0 technology, including edge computing platforms.  We’ve put together the following tips to help companies implement fast-deploying and secure IT for production environments.

The first step when starting any Industry 4.0 initiative or digital transformation within a manufacturing environment, is to define the common goals and consistent use of terms.

One goal should be to achieve real-time processing of measured values through the use of more IT and additional sensors.  This will enable innovative applications, such as machine learning, process optimisation and predictive maintenance, which can only be done via big data analysis. Deviations can be recognised very quickly, increasing the reliability of these environments.

Find a secure location for the IT systems

Another consideration where to put any IT systems (such as an edge computing system) within a production environment.  This requires input from a range of different departments: facility management, fire prevention and safety managers, production managers, IT managers and other specialists in network technology and production planning.


Project managers should therefore start planning with the relevant departmental managers at an early stage to identify any issues.  It may mean finding an alternative space or even building a whole new facility to house the additional IT systems, but it’s just as likely that a business will be able to retrofit IT systems in the manufacturing hall.

In one recent project, Rittal’s team installed the necessary IT for automated production on the second floor of the production hall.  As part of the project, special security rooms were used for the IT racks.  It works extremely well, however, because this arrangement used a water-based IT cooling system, it carried the risk of a leak onto the manufacturing facilities located below.  To prevent this happening, leak detectors were installed in the IT racks and throughout the building to alert the facility management team of any problems at an early stage, increasing operational reliability.

In general, companies should select the best possible locations for IT systems from a technical security perspective as well as to support well thought-out network cabling. Ensuring there is sufficient distance to the manufacturing devices will protect IT systems from heat, dirt and vibrations.

Increase safety with monitoring

Small and medium-sized companies often find that the IT systems can send detailed alarm messages to control centres within the company, but not outside of it, as these alerts are blocked by the firewall.

The process of monitoring IT systems and sending an alert to relevant technicians also needs to be addressed collectively by all of the project participants, starting with a review of the existing organisation-wide IT security strategy.

For example, we worked with a manufacturing company to upgrade the IT cooling systems in its production hall to lower energy costs and increase the reliability of the IT system. Modern cooling systems are now able to send status messages directly to the manufacturer. In this instance, the firewalls had to be configured according to the data protocols used, otherwise the message would not have got through and the cooling systems would not be able to function in accordance with the designated levels of safety and efficiency.

Secure monitoring software

Monitoring software (DCIM) used to oversee production-related IT systems should be subject to special protection. Such a solution has a large number of interfaces and supports a variety of protocols, so it can be vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

To make the whole installation more robust, including the server platform, we recommend using software to conduct a security analysis.  So-called network vulnerability tests check the systems for known but still open security weaknesses.

Without this protection, in extreme cases, attackers could shut down the fans in intelligent cooling systems or turn off switchable power distribution units (PDUs).


Set up edge computing quickly and securely

If areas of a production plant cannot be shut down while work is in progress, then it may be advisable to install pre-configured IT containers which are equipped with the required active IT components.  Companies can therefore expand their IT capacities to decentralised production sites quickly and safely using what are termed “edge” data centres.

To set up an edge computing infrastructure for Industry 4.0 initiatives, partners Rittal and iNNOVO Cloud offer turnkey IT module and container solutions.

These contain IT environments in sturdy steel containers that house power distribution units, UPS, IT cooling systems, racks and, optionally, active components. This provides a quick and secure start to production, in locations across the world.

For more information visit www.rittal.co.uk, www.friedhelm-loh-group.com, or on twitter @rittal_ltd.  

Rapid assembly for secure distribution

Rittal has developed four compact PDU (Power Distribution Units) systems for professional power distribution in IT racks which will halve the time a system takes to assemble, compared to screw-in PDUs.

The systems employ snap-in technology so not only is it very quick and easy to assemble, there is also no need for tools.  

To find out more, visit Rittal’s stand D610 at DCW (Excel, London, 12-13 March 2019).

Up to four PDUs can be mounted in the zero-U-space, (the space between the side of the 19-inch level and the side panel of an 800-mm wide IT rack) so no height units for servers are wasted.  Options include:

The “PDU basic” which provides a robust and compact basis power distribution for the IT environment. The insert strip is easily connected and is immediately functional.

The “PDU metered” variant has an internal web interface and an ethernet port so performance data on an entire IT rack can be cost-effectively monitored.

The “PDU switched” model builds on this functionality, allowing the user to turn individual output slots on and off via the web interface.

Finally, the “PDU managed” version takes this one step further.  It has been developed specifically for use in high-end IT racks and offers power distribution with power measuring and monitoring functions for each individual output slot.

fri151314800 Rittal PDU Rapid assembly for secure distribution

Low internal power consumption

All the PDUs feature the standard international data centre CEE connectors with a three-metre long connection cable and C13 and C19 slots.

A country-specific variant is also available for the UK market.

They are available in single-phase or three-phase versions; phase currents of 16 A and 32 A can be supported, depending on the type of PDU, which means electrical outputs of over 22 kW can be distributed by one rack PDU.

Again, depending on the model involved, they also enable energy management by phase (feed) or even down to server-level (single energy measurement per output slot). All have a low internal energy consumption due to integrated bi-stable relays (in the switchable versions), as well as an energy-efficient OLED display with a power-save feature.

Automatic integration in DCIM software

The complete PDU range can be easily integrated in a Data Centre Infrastructure Management (DCIM)-Software application such as Rittal RiZone. This is achieved automatically by the Autoscan function with Rittal’s RiZone software. As a result, energy consumption is monitored efficiently and safely, and then logged. The intelligent power distribution bars can be easily configured and managed via a web interface. All measurements such as voltage, phase and neutral currents, as well as active and apparent power, active energy and power factor are displayed on a web page. Suitable alarm limits can be clearly defined so that the administrator can react quickly in an emergency.

The Computer Multi Control (CMC) III monitoring platform, with its own CAN-bus function and (optionally) up to four sensors, can also be connected up to monitor temperature, humidity, and access. The sophisticated user administration system protects the power distribution from unauthorized access.

The four systems together extend Rittal’s current product range of modular PSMs (power system modules) to include non-modular PDU types.

Further information on all Rittal’s edge products can be found at www.rittal.co.uk and www.friedhelm-loh-group.com or on twitter @rittal_ltd.

Visit Rittal at DCW (Excel, London, 12-13 March 2019) on Stand D610 to find out how our industry-leading experts can help you deliver your IT Power Distribution requirements.

Outstanding Cooling From Above

Rittal has developed a roof-mounted version of its award-winning and highly energy efficient Blue e+ cooling units; these are designed for enclosures of 800 x 600mm (W x D) upwards and deliver a cooling output of 1.3 kW.

The new roof-mounted units also feature within the new VX25 large enclosure system as an integrated solution.

blue e+ roof mounted fri180425915

Roof-mounted climate control units are the top choice in control and switchgear applications where there is a lack of space on the front and side panels. This could be due to physical location of the enclosures and minimal gangway clearance, but could also be due to an abudance of interlocks, switches or other controls preventing adequate space for a wall mounted cooling unit.

Air routing within the enclosure is also optimised; the cold air is blown down the front of the enclosure and drawn back up the mounting plate, thereby effectively dissipating the heat from top-mounted components such as frequency inverters.

The new roof-mounted cooling units of the Blue e+ series, like the existing wall-mounted units, work with a combination of heat pipe and conventional compressor technology.

Energy consumption is very low because neither a compressor nor a pump is required when  the cooling units are operating on the heat pipe; only the fans that circulate the air by the heat exchangers need an electricity supply. This cooling method works particularly well if there is a large temperature difference between the inside of the enclosure and the surroundings.

Average Energy Savings of 75 per cent

The additional compressor within the cooling units only kicks in when a larger cooling output is required.  All the active components operate with speed-controlled drives so the cooling output always matches what is required, ensuring less energy is consumed.

Overall, depending on the ambient conditions and the application, the cooling units of the Blue e+ series use on average 75 percent less energy than conventional compressor cooling units do. Lower temperature deviations within the enclosure means that the service life of the components installed is extended.

In addition, the new units have a multi-voltage supply making them easy to operate at all common mains voltages and frequencies. This is a huge benefit, especially for engineers who sell their machines worldwide.

Intuitive and Comfortable Operation

Blue e+ roof-mounted systems are easy and intuitive to operate, using a touch display for basic settings and to read status messages. The touch display can also be integrated into the door of the enclosure if required. 

Another option is the IoT interface, which makes it simple to integrate the cooling unit in an Industry 4.0 (IoT) environment.

Completely Ready-Assembled

The Blue e+ cooling unit is a feature in the new Rittal integrated solution which consists of an enclosure with built-in climate control. 

The cooling unit is installed in the upper section of the VX25 enclosure as a plug & play.  The touch display is built into the enclosure door and the unit can be easily removed for maintenance.

For more information visit www.rittal.co.uk or on twitter @rittal_ltd.  To arrange a FREE cooling review, go online, call our customer service team on 01709 704000, or email cooling@rittal.co.uk.

The Impact of IT Downtime: Lessons From the Banking Sector


By Karl Lycett – Rittal UK’s Product Manager for IT Climate Control


2018 brought us a cavalcade of sensationalist headlines from numerous media outlets, describing the ‘Meltdowns’ and ‘Litany of Failures’ of IT systems in the banking sector.

The periods of downtime that followed caused thousands of customers to be locked out of their online banking and account details, derailing something which has become a necessity of everyday life…the instant access of data.

You may think that the loss of a couple of hours here and there in the grand scheme of things might be minimal, but this is a chink in the armour which users of the service notice and it can significantly knock their trust in the business.

Nicky Morgan MP, the head of the treasury committee wrote an open letter to banks after a recent service interruption in which she stated:

“It simply isn’t good enough to expose customers to IT failures, including delays in paying bills and an inability to access their own money. High street banks justify the closure of their branch networks on the basis that they are providing a seamless online and mobile phone banking service. These justifications carry little weight if their banking apps and websites cannot be relied upon.”

fri180426610 rittal it cooling solution

For businesses and stakeholders in any industry, the currency of ‘being reliable’ and the concept of ‘availability’ is firmly in the zeitgeist. As we become an increasingly 24/7 economy its value will only increase.

Turn the spotlight onto your company and think of your customers’ reaction if your IT network goes down for even a day. What sort of impact would that have for your workplace? No emails, production lines stopping, an increase in workloads, plus associated logistical issues as warehouses are increasingly reliant on software and digital resources.

It’s not just a case of everything correcting itself and going back to normal the following day; major blackouts can have ramifications that cause workload backlogs for many weeks.

In more and more situations today, employees are working remotely, doing non-traditional hours and streaming meetings with teams based around the world. The constant striving for more output per employee and better service for customers via electronic means ensures that the weight of responsibility is squarely on the shoulders of your IT infrastructure.

To ensure your IT network can withstand the increasing demand it’s wise to undertake both a regular appraisal of your equipment to make sure it is up to the task and also very importantly a review of the environment in which it operates.

Maintaining a protective environment for your IT equipment is crucial as it can reduce the probability of unexpected downtime. What’s more, if the right systems are in place, it can detect potential issues before they arise, so corrective action can be undertaken and failures such as I’ve described can be avoided.

There are many important factors that contribute to a protective environment, such as appropriate redundancy, the correct housing of equipment, a stable power supply and adequate and effective climate control. These can all play a factor in delivering the best environment and delivering the longest life span for your IT equipment, plus, more importantly, keeping your infrastructure online so your customer can receive your goods and services.

Rittal’s engineers are here to offer support.  They have vast experience managing high-profile projects in numerous industry sectors, around the world.  Their expertise will ensure that mean time between failure increases, keeping your business online for longer and running smoothly.

After all, the impact that neglecting your IT infrastructure can have on your customers can be boiled down into one famous quote from Warren Buffett: “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently”.

For more information, go to www.rittal.co.uk, on twitter @rittal_ltd, or email klycett@rittal.co.uk.  

Rittal’s full portfolio of IT product and service solutions will be on show at Data Centre World (Excel, London, 12-13 March 2019) on Stand D610.

Five Trends for Cloud Computing and Data Centres

Rittal has issued predictions for the data centre sector as the industry moves towards greater AI-based monitoring capabilities and the processing of data in real time with edge computing. 

Hyperscale data centres will drive the cloud market and streamlined cooling technologies will boost energy efficiency in data centres. 

Meanwhile Nordic countries are continuing to offer attractive locations for cloud-based data centre facilities for those looking to cut costs.

Rittal will be showcasing its expertise in edge computing products and services at Data Centre World (Excel, London, 12-13 March 2019) on Stand D610.

IT Container WBW1 - Einbauten

Rittal has outlined five trends for cloud computing and data centres that IT managers should have on their agenda.

Trend 1: Data Centres will Acquire Greater AI-based Monitoring Capabilities

IT data centre specialists will require assistance systems featuring artificial intelligence (AI), or they will soon find it impossible to operate large and complex IT systems in a fail-safe way.

According to the IDC, by 2022, half the components within large data centres will include integrated AI functions and therefore be operating autonomously.  Essentially this means that administrators will be reliant on predictive analytics and machine learning – designed to provide predictive fault forecasts and support optimised load balancing – to ensure maximum reliability of their data centres.

Trend 2: Processing the Flood of Data in Real Time with Edge Computing 

We’re on the cusp of the roll-out of the 5G mobile communications network.  The many transmission masts this requires means that the mobile communications infrastructure will have to be expanded through edge data centres.

It will also increase the amount of data that network operators and other companies have to process. CB Insights forecasts that every user will generate an average of 1.5 GB of data per day with an internet-enabled device by 2020.

Decentralising IT infrastructure through edge data centres means data can be processed at source, leading to low latency and enabling real-time applications for the control of industrial robots or autonomous vehicle systems.  Edge data centres are connected to the cloud to deliver additional data analysis. 

Essentially, businesses now need to examine how to expand their IT capacities flexibly over the next couple of years and how to evaluate edge concepts with this in mind. 

The general trend towards standardisation is another key factor in achieving the fast deployment time and scalability that the market is demanding from data centres.

Trend 3: The cloud market will benefit from hyperscale data centres

Acceptance of the cloud continues to grow, and is particularly prevalent across mechanical and plant engineering.  

At the same time, investments in hyperscale data centres are increasing globally, an indication of the further spread of the cloud as an operating model.

Researchers at Synergy Reach expect that there will be more than 600 hyperscale data centres worldwide by 2020 – currently, the number stands at around 450.

It’s why Rittal recommends that IT managers now consider how to balance their on-site edge (or core) data centre and cloud resources, to optimally support application hosting and high availability in line with their corporate strategy.

Trend 4: Optimised technologies will increase energy efficiency

Alongside high availability, energy efficiency is seen as the second most important management issue when it comes to operating a data centre.

The energy efficiency of new data centres has improved by roughly 60 percent over the last decade according to the Borderstep Institute.  At the same time, however, energy requirements have continued to rise as IT capacities have grown.

For data centre managers, optimising the energy usage of their entire data centre should be the number one priority in the coming year.  Hybrid cooling units that integrate free cooling with refrigerant-based cooling are one example of new approaches to cost optimisation.

Trend 5: The Nordic countries’ locations will help to cut costs 

The Nordic region has become an attractive location for cloud and co-location providers.

Countries such as Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden offer renewable energy sources, a climate favourable to data centres, very good internet connections and a high level of political and economic stability. Analysts expect the turnover of data centres in the region to grow by eight percent per year until 2023.   One famous example is Norway’s Lefdal Mine Datacenter (LMD) with whom Rittal is a strategic and technological partner. 

LMD sources its electrical power entirely from renewables while the cooling system uses local sea water. As a result, the facility achieves a power usage effectiveness (PUE) of 1.15 and operating costs for customers are low.

“Alongside the trend toward greater standardisation, we will see companies expanding their IT infrastructure in a more decentralised way in 2019. This will support the digital initiatives that now form an integral part of a successful corporate strategy.

“One way of doing this is through edge data centres, which can be put into operation very quickly and on the company’s premises as IT containers for instance, and which thus support the digital transformation in all branches of industry.

“Rittal is offering an array of solutions for edge infrastructures, ranging from rack solutions to turnkey IT containers with cloud connections,” says Andreas Keiger, Executive Vice President of the Rittal Global Business Unit IT.

Further information at www.rittal.co.uk and www.friedhelm-loh-group.com or on twitter @rittal_ltd.     


System Perfection – VX25.

The VX25 is the first large enclosure system capable of meeting the technical requirements of Industry 4.0 to perfection, while at the same time ensuring faster, more productive assembly. This Rittal innovation is the result of our tireless striving for MORE: more simplicity, more speed, more benefits. More than 25 registered property rights confirm the reputation Rittal has earned as the leading innovator in enclosure technology.


1. Efficient processes

End-to-end, accurate, validated 3D data ensure a high level of planning confidence from the outset. A plausibility check in the Rittal Configuration System facilitates fast, error-free configuration of products and accessories.

2. Reduced complexity

In the VX25, we have managed to successfully replicate all the functions of the predecessor model TS 8 with far fewer accessory parts, while creating new functions and adding value. A consistent 25 mm pitch pattern across all levels and between enclosures has helped to significantly reduce the number of individual parts – for example, 40 per cent fewer punched sections/rails.

3. Improved access

The VX25 is accessible from all four sides, because components can now also be fitted to the outer mounting level from the outside. This saves 30 minutes compared with conventional assembly.  The same applies to the new option of installing mounting plates from the rear.

4. Simple interior installation

Fast assembly is facilitated by complete symmetry on all vertical and horizontal enclosure sides. The installation depth can also be increased by 20 mm with optional accessories. Multiple mounting plates can also be installed in one enclosure.

5. Tool-free installation

The simple, tool-free assembly of the handle system reduces assembly time by 50 percent. Similarly, doors can also be fitted and removed without the need for tools.

6. More functions

Even enclosure accessories can now be built into the base. For example, baying brackets and cable clamp rails can be installed there, and cables can be simply and efficiently retained and secured via the punched sections. Not only does that save time and money, it also boosts safety.

For more information please do not hesitate to contact Rittal via:

E: information@rittal.co.uk

T: 01709 704105

W: https://www.rittal.com/uk-en/content/en/start/


BE-TOP from Friedhelm Loh Group


Digitalization means networks, not islands. This broader perspective is essential to seizing the best opportunities for continuing competitiveness,” says Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler, CEO of Rittal International. Nature shows how it’s done – organised systems are more successful. The algorithm of the forest shows how important the networking of actors, processes and information is. The new edition of “be top” looks in depth at this kind of relationship. It is now also available as an online magazine for mobile reading and with exclusive additional content.


System and innovation research has confirmed that digitalization acts as a catalyst for collaborative industrial economic systems. The companies of the Friedhelm Loh Group practice the principle of “Stronger Together” in their daily interactions, too: moving away from bilateral relations towards a high-performance ecosystem. The new “be top” shows how Rittal, Cideon, Eplan, LKH and Stahlo, together with customers and partner companies, are tackling the challenges posed by digital transformation. These are the topics covered in Edition 02/2018:

Connected manufacturing: one step ahead of the future

Rittal is transforming its Rittershausen plant into a highly networked factory of the future for the production of the new VX25 large enclosure system. For the visionaries from Dietzhölztal, Industry 4.0 is not a distant scenario but already part of everyday life. The team performance at the factory is due to the metamorphosis of the production facility during ongoing operation, to make a perfected product and a fully networked production facility that sets new standards.

How will you continue to work together in the future

The urban planners of the South Korean city of Songdo are also pioneers. Along with a team of researchers, they have created a Smart City that can think for itself and which makes the lives of its inhabitants more comfortable and safer. It is based on a stable IT infrastructure from Rittal with high-performance servers, networks and computers.

Networked design processes: well advised

Smooth processes form the basis for successful cooperation in a network. With its Engineering Quick-Check, Cideon takes a close look at all the processes and interfaces in mechanical and plant engineering and thus ensures that information flows fast throughout the entire network.

betop mag

New Be-Top web magazine

The new web magazine scores straightaway with even more topics and suggestions from the world of the Friedhelm Loh Group

READ IT HERE —>  https://betop.friedhelm-loh-group.com/

If you would like any other information then please do not hesitate to contact Rittal on

T: 01709 704105

W: https://www.rittal.com/uk-en/content/en/start/

E: information@rittal.co.uk 

Rittal’s Ri4Power Modular Busbar System Ideally Suited to Industrial Switchgear Application

Rittal was approached to provide power distribution and motor control centre system for a replacement drives panel at a steel mill based in the North of England.

The heavy-duty industrial switchgear system that drove the mill was no longer operationally effective.  Its drives and controls were out of date, some of the drives were no longer working, and there had been a series of equipment failures over the years.  The panel itself was located in a cellar below the rolling mills, which created a dusty, difficult and therefore challenging environment for highly sensitive electronic equipment.  There were also size restrictions on the new panel imposed by the limited available space.

Rittal liaised with the system’s principle designer and nominated Integrator, MAP Automation, and specified ABB’s drive systems and power components.  The motor control centre system was based on Rittal’s Ri4Power electrical power distribution system and designed via Rittal’s Power Engineering planning software. 

mapscunrearbusbar_0989 v2-steel mill

Ri4Power is ideally suited for this type of application.  It supports reliable, low-voltage, switchgear systems for machines, plant, and buildings and has been subject to stringent testing under the most demanding conditions which has demonstrated its suitability to support the needs of industrial switchgear.  Its welded modular design means power can be split at specified points, for ease of installation.  Meanwhile, the Power Engineering software provides teams with comprehensive support in planning and verifying standardised Ri4Power switchgear, as required by IEC 61439-1/-2 standard.

Unusually, the steel mill’s new panel required a double busbar systems, for built-in redundancy.  The main horizontal busbar system fed via an air circuit breaker (ACB) while a standby busbar system fed critical loads.

The standby Busbar system (RiLine60) was fitted on a double mounting plate system located behind the variable speed drive sections. Shrouding was provided to prevent indirect contact if the rear steel covers were removed.

The ACB was fitted using a new busbar supporting kit to deliver a quick solution which complies with switchgear standards.

It was also clear that the new motor control centre had to accept the existing field cabling; an issue quickly resolved using Rittal’s maxi PLS which provided an easy connection to these large, incoming cables.

In addition, Rittal’s energy-saving LED panel lights were specified to make future installation projects and on-going maintenance easy for users and operators.  These fast-fit lights include plug-in power leads as standard and are easily controlled through a door switch.   

The installation had to be carried out within a limited timescale and during the mill’s shutdown period, but was built and delivered on time.

Further information at www.rittal.co.uk and www.friedhelm-loh-group.com or on twitter @rittal_ltd.