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24 September 2014

In a recent report published by the Clean Energy Council of Australia, the Mount Mercer Wind Farm, undertaken by Meridian Energy Australia, was listed as one of the largest renewable energy projects currently under construction. This should come as no surprise to those aware of the project, as upon completion it is expected to generate enough renewable electricity to power close to 100,000 homes – or the equivalent of the nearby regional city of Ballarat in Victoria, Australia! Located in the Golden Plains Shire approximately 30 kilometres south of Ballarat in Western Victoria, the Mount Mercer Wind Farm will also result in a reduction of more than 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per annum.

Working alongside ETEL Distribution Transformers (based in Auckland, New Zealand), NHP are proud to have been involved in the delivery of a transformer for each of the 66 wind turbine generators, which will convert the voltage from 690 volts all the way up to 33,000 volts, allowing the electricity to be distributed across the national grid.

A specialised transformer manufacturer that services the Pacific region, ETEL manufacture transformers out of Auckland and also have an office in Tullarmarine, Melbourne. ETEL is fully committed to ensuring the highest quality and performance of its range of distribution transformers and associated switchgear and employs a Quality Assurance system to ensure continued compliance and increased peace of mind for the customer.

“Our philosophy has always been to design and build transformers to suit a customer’s needs. We build good quality transformers that are manufactured to the high standards required by the customer and we do it in a timely manner”, said Geoff Knight, Group Sales and Marketing Manager at ETEL.

“We do all our fabrication and engineering in the Auckland facility which offers approximately 18,000 square metres of factory space and partnering with reliable suppliers is critical to our offering”.

Throughout the manufacture process of the 66 transformers (one for each wind turbine at the site) NHP provided a range of components that enabled ETEL to maintain their customer promise of quality, customised transformers.

As well as the MODpower circuit breakers, ETEL also used Cirprotec surge diveters, Wohner fuses, Allen-Bradley® Prosafe trapped key interlocks and Socomec load-break switches which formed the large majority of the low voltage panel that was fitted within the transformers.

“NHP have a very reliable, fully tested product and have a number of offices in Australia which enabled them to back-up that product on-site with relative ease”, continued Knight.

“We wouldn’t have chosen to use the NHP product if we had any concerns about their reliability and we wouldn’t hesitate to partner with them in future projects”.

With completion of the project set in the coming months, the wind farm is connected to the existing National Electricity Grid at the Elaine Terminal Station where it is converted prior to distribution.  As well as the environmental benefits, the Mt Mercer Wind Farm will provide substantial benefits to the communities involved by creating jobs, investment and flow-on effects and enhancing community wellbeing.

See below for a full video case study on the Mount Mercer Wind Farm project!

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