This project involved the construction of Europe's largest in-town retail development on a 40 acre site grouping 150,000m2 of shops and leisure complex. Located adjacent to the A40 main western access route to the capital, the contract was awarded to the Australian developer Westfield in 2005 with the work being completed in 2008 at a cost of £1.6 bn
T. Clarke, the London based building services group, was the main contractor selected by Westfield for the electrical installation, which was executed according to the initial design put forward by Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE). This strategy enabled Westfield to retain ownership of the installation and therefore derive a source of revenue from the electricity distribution.
Electrical distribution solution
It was Lucy Switchgear's products that were selected because they represented the best balance of long term reliability, flexibility and overall performance when compared to the capital outlay. Fuse technology was specified as it provided the necessary discrimination and fault limiting characteristics, whilst offering a saving over more complex technological solutions such as MCB/ MCCB. The issue of nuisance tripping was also eliminated through the use of fuses. Furthermore, Lucy Sabre and Trident Ring Main Units (RMU) were specified for the 11kV distribution together with the Lucy Indoor Wallboards, Multi Service Distribution Boards and Heavy Duty Cut Outs installed on the Low Voltage (LV) system.
The main rationale behind Westfield's choice centred upon SSE's confidence with the Lucy Switchgear MV and LV distribution switchgear range following their long term experience with the product portfolio. Crucially, this would also facilitate any future sell-off of the equipment, as the DNO already had substantial amounts of identical products on its asset register.
Unquestionably, this prestigious project on completion was of great success and commercial importance for all concerned, including Lucy Switchgear.
Large scale electrical distribution achieved by using low voltage fuse technology
In more recent times, the use of fuse technology for overload and short-circuit protection has largely been overlooked by consultants and specifiers in the building services sector in favour of the MCB (miniature circuit breaker) or MCCB (moulded case circuit breaker). However, the benefits derived from the utilisation of fuse technology can be neatly summarised, as follows:
• Total security with guaranteed operation to isolate short-circuits and overloads
• Simple fuse discrimination rules for ease of implementation
• Reduced I²t "let through" energy to limit damage to electrical equipment
• Long term reliability through no moving parts or maintenance requirements
• Well-proven technology for your power distribution needs
• Lower overall cost than other technologies
New fused protection products
Since the completion of the Westfield retail development, Lucy Switchgear has developed an innovative range of indoor/ outdoor, LV, fused cabinets and pillars (known as AcuLok) to complement the existing range of fused protection devices. AcuLok offers enhanced safety with its unique fuse carrier design and more functionality to cater for the requirements of the Smart Grid era going forward.
So, the next time you are faced with the conundrum - Fuse versus MCB or MCCB, why not discuss your project requirements with Lucy Switchgear and benefit from our proven technology and cost-effective solutions.