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ABB to strengthen Qatari power network

ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, has won an order worth around US$30mn from the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa), the electricity and water operator in Qatar, to build two underground substations to help meet increasing residential and commercial demand for power in the capital city of Doha.

The substations will be practically invisible to the public and form part of the first phase of Musheireb, the key project of Dohaland, which is a subsidiary of the Qatar Foundation for education, science and community development.

The Musheireb project will be executed in five stages and aims to reconstruct and restore a 35 hectare area in Doha's old city center. It will include an underground pedestrian area, car parks as well as historic and new buildings.

ABB will design, supply, install and commission two 66 kV (kilovolt) gas insulated switchgear (GIS) substations as well as transformers, 11 kV metal-clad air insulated switchgear (AIS enclosed in a metal housing) and cables.

The substations will be equipped with ABB automation systems and the latest generation of protection and control products, compliant with the IEC 61850 global substation communications standard. The project is scheduled for completion by the end of 2012.

"These underground substations are designed to blend into the surrounding landscape and will be based on our latest GIS technology, which provides an extremely compact footprint while ensuring high efficiency and safety," said Peter Leupp, head of ABB's Power Systems division.

"You may not see them, but they will strengthen the transmission network and help provide a reliable power supply to this fast-developing region."

Kahramaa is rapidly expanding and enhancing its power grid to meet growing demand for power in the region. Its transmission grid comprises about 200 primary high-voltage and extra-high voltage substations as well as hundreds of kilometers of overhead lines and underground cables.

The distribution network includes about 6,500 low- and medium-voltage substations, supported by more than 4,500 kilometers of cables.