Saudi utility partners with GE to modernise grid network


Under the deal with the Saudi Arabian utility firm, GE will provide and install four new 132KV substations in the utility’s service area in Asir and Jazan regions.

In addition to installing four new substations, GE will upgrade the company’s existing 132KV substations with a total of 1,933MVA.

The project was designed by Saudi Arabia Electricity Company to improve management of its grid load to meet growing energy demands in the southern region.

According to a press statement, the energy provider anticipates its consumer energy demand to grow by 50% by 2020.

Upgrades to the utility’s existing substations and the installation of new substations will enable the company to secure and improve its energy distribution to some 25,000 consumers in the southern region.

[quote] GE will also provide the utility with gas insulated switch gears, power transformers and integrate the substations with the company’s automation technology.

GE’s grid automation solution will enable Saudi Arabia Electricity Company to remotely monitor and operate its switch gear from various regional control centres.

The project is expected to positively impact on the economic development of the Saudi Arabia’s southern region and help the country meet its goals set under the National Transformation Program (NTP) and the broader Saudi Vision 2030. [Vietnamese utility upgrades management of substations].

Automation of substations

The news follows a report issued by Frost and Sullivan stating that demand for distributed energy resources is driving growth in the market for substation automation.

According to Frost and Sullivan’s Energy and Environment team, distributed energy resource management and software vendors will disrupt the market with best-in-class solutions.

The firm adds that DERs have had a significant impact on the utility industry and grid network, disrupting the conventional business models and grid stability. In response, over the next 10 years, utilities like investor-owned, municipal, vertically-integrated and distribution system operators (DSOs) across the globe are expected to invest in substation and feeder automation technologies.

These investments are driven by the need to improve reliability as well as integrate new distributed generation (DG) resources into the transmission and distribution (T&D) grid network. Read more…


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