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Powering to the top of the Premiership

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Manchester United Football Club has teamed with AVK to provide power for the floodlights within its stadium.

Old Trafford is often the host of major European football matches, and it is simply not feasible to be without floodlights and have to abandon a match because of a utility failure.

TV companies and governing football bodies take a dim view of abandoned matches and can impose massive financial penalties on the host side.

Ian Collins is the main facilities Manager at Manchester United and, together with Carl Niland of Hannan Associates, came up with a list of demanding constraints on any potential power system. A delivery of two weeks was required for 2 Qty 400 kVA Generators. AVK then needed to take a close look at the kind of load the two new generators would supply in the event of a power outage.

The new floodlights being installed at the same time all came with electronic control equipment. AVK had to ensure the generators could cope with the required step loads and the electronic governors fitted onto the generators were of a high enough specification to inhibit any voltage droop or frequency intolerance as the floodlights would not be able to re-strike quickly and enable play to resume.

AVK also had to provide 16 changeover switches located throughout Old Trafford which would be timed to bring on various sections of the floodlights. Everything needed to happen swiftly and the provision of layout drawings, schematics, and detailed information all required instant responses.

AVK keep a stock of standby generators so delivery was not a problem. The standby generators at Manchester United Football Club have Scania engines and Newage alternators. They were supplied with a 75 dBA close-fit canopy arrangement.

AVK then had to prove the system through functional testing, carried out with other parties involved in the project.

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