At 3 pm on November 23, the Pearl Hall on the third floor of the new Shangri-La Hotel, Beijing.

A lecture entitled "ABB China Services - Transformer Asset Management Technology" attracted many people in the industry.

The reporter noted that this is a microcosm of the importance placed on the transformer service market by ABB, the global electrical leader.

"As far as the entire open transformer service market is concerned, we estimate that the annual market demand so far is about 400 million U.S. dollars."

Aberdeen Zheng, general manager of ABB Transformer Business Unit Services, recently described the situation to reporters in a meeting room of ABB China Co., Ltd. in Jiuxianqiao, Beijing.

In September of this year, ABB formally announced that it has established a new transformer service plant in Hefei, joining ABB’s 18-year-old Zheng Yuping as the head of the new plant.

A one step ahead market layout Since 1996, China's power installed capacity is second only to the United States. It has been the world’s second largest power installation country for 15 consecutive years. The current installed capacity of more than one billion kilowatts is a foregone conclusion. In less than a year, China’s power installation will exceed 1.1 billion kilowatts, which will surpass the United States and become the world’s largest country.

Behind such a rapid increase in the total amount of power generation equipment can not be separated from the prosperity of the power transformer equipment market, including power transformers, distribution transformers and other equipment.

"As of the end of 2011, about 55,000 power transformers are in operation in the Chinese market. About one-quarter of 5,000 of them are ABB products," Zheng Xiaoping predicted.

He further explained that "five or six years ago, China had basically no need for transformers. If there is a problem with the transformer, it may be replaced with a transformer."

He analyzed that there was not much demand for services during the large-scale construction. In recent years, with the development of the situation, the country has put forward more requirements for investment and environment, and it has brought development opportunities to the service. “From the current point of view, the proportion of services in the entire business is relatively low, less than 5%, but we think the service industry should be a sunrise industry.”

Transformer life cycle management When it comes to transformer services, the concept of life cycle management proposed by ABB is a topic that cannot be bypassed.

“When we ourselves have been more or less uncomfortable, we all know what the doctor will do for us.” Zheng Yuping said: “We are the doctors of transformers.”

In the power industry, the life of a transformer is approximately 15 to 20 years. The early period usually refers to the 7th and 8th years after being put into operation. From the 8th year to the 15th year, it is called the mid-life period, and after the 15th year, it is called the end of life period.

Zheng Yuping said that in the early stage of transformer operation, the risk of its operation status and operating environment is not high. We may only perform data analysis and diagnosis on the equipment and maintain some key components such as switches.

In the middle of the transformer's life cycle, the transformer oil will age, we will carry out "oil regeneration", and also help customers calculate the transformer insulation strength. ABB's transformer oil is a vegetable oil that is famous in the world.

After the end of the transformer's life, the risk of equipment operation is very high. ABB advises customers to either replace, upgrade or replace heavily worn switches.

When talking about the main faults of power transformers, Zheng Yuping thinks that oil leaks from components and some work instructions are abnormal. Large faults can cause unplanned power outages, such as coil deformation after the impact, and the switch does not operate. In some cases, transformer short-circuiting momentarily generates huge electromagnetic impact force and high heat energy, and it may burn.

Revelation from troubleshooting of power plants in the United States From the beginning of 1996 to the present, about 70 transformer accidents have occurred in US power plants, which has brought great impact on the operation of local power plants and power grid operation companies.

Although the replacement cost of a step-up transformer used in a typical power plant is only around US$15 million, the cost is far more than that. It usually takes several months from ordering and installation. This kind of loss is huge.

ABB's transformer service places a strong emphasis on asset management, usually not only for individual transformers, but for managing a group of transformers in the network.

Also taking the United States as an example: ABB gave them a state-based risk assessment for the customers of the American Grid Corporation. They felt very helpful. For example, their original maintenance was based on time. Like in the country, some preventive experiments are done every year. Each one has to do, and the budget is charged on a per-unit basis. After ABB evaluated the risk status of 54 substations and 120 transformers, the new maintenance mode is now based on state maintenance, which can increase capital efficiency.

“I think this is a real place for customers to create value. ABB combines its own experience in R&D and manufacturing transformers, providing what it calls a 360-degree evaluation service, evaluating transformers, covering transformer design parameters, installation characteristics, System characteristics, past status assessments, maintenance history, etc. Our professional evaluation allows customers to obtain health consultations through our comprehensive assessments when they are uncertain about certain issues or when discussing repair plans. "Zheng Yuping said.

Service is particularly important for industrial users. ABB believes that industrial users need services more than power users.

Zheng Xiaoping said that users of the Ministry of Industry generally have such characteristics. First, the loss of unplanned power outage users is very large. The second is that its own expertise and maintenance capabilities for power transformers are relatively limited.

For example, he said that one of the famous steel companies in East China had a broken transformer and the company was in a hurry because it had a huge impact on single-day steel production. The company hopes to repair this transformer in the shortest possible time. Hope is a month. ABB hurried to pull the equipment to Zhongshan, Guangdong, and returned to the factory three days in advance. The customer was very happy. Because each day can bring users more than 10 million yuan in revenue.

"If this customer uses a state risk assessment, it can avoid unplanned blackouts."

Zheng Yuping also introduced ABB's development of another forward-looking service, which is real-time monitoring of transformer services. This is related to the concept of smart grid proposed by the National Grid.

ABB calls it TEC electronic monitoring system. In short, ABB will hand over the device and transformer to customers. Through the transformer factory's probes, it will monitor many operating parameters of the transformer. After monitoring, it will integrate with TEC and online system, and then help the customer. diagnosis.

"ABB has been working as a transformer service for two to three years. Compared with competitors, is it because they are late?" a reporter asked.

Zheng Yuping believes that ABB is definitely ahead of the market in terms of services. Its main competitor is only now beginning to focus on transformer services. However, at least ABB is at the forefront of the Chinese market in terms of product technology, development, and resource allocation.

“In terms of business volume over the past few years, some of our major competitors are significantly different from ours! ABB is the world's largest transformer manufacturer, so it is also the world’s best in terms of service.” Zheng Xiping said with great pride.

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