Mühlheim am Main




BCU-50, visIT


IEC 60870-5-104

Public utilities Mühlheim have undertaken a complex task in the past few years: the construction of a new substation. This has the task of transmitted the electricity from the local network operator (Energienetz Offenbach GmbH) via 16 outgoing circuits to the transformers and then the urban area. As public utilities Mühlheim has already benefitted from good experience with technology from SAE IT-systems at several locations, they have also decided in favour of a telecontrol system from Cologne in this project too.


A plot right next to the tracks of Deutsche Bahn was chosen as the location for the new substation: one more reason for public utilities Mühlheim to opt for the vibration-resistant net-line BCU-50 as master station. The master station is connected directly with the ProCoS control system in the Mühlheim control centre via the IEC 60870-5-104 protocol. An FO ring with 16 protection devices for the 16 outgoing circuits to the medium voltage network is connected to the BCU-50 master station via IEC 61850. Short circuit indicators made by Horstmann and the established network analysis devices PQI-DA from A. Eberle are also used at the outgoing circuits and are read out via the telecontrol units. A local operator station, realised with the visualisation software visIT, serves for system visualisation and as local control. At a glance, the large display shows the extensive measured values from the connected network analysis devices and the statuses of the outgoing circuits. Customised rapid access to information on the switching station and alarm systems could also be installed via the user-friendly software.

“To keep the system practical, I’ve incorporated the needs of our employees and the recommendations from SAE in the visualisation”, states Michael Kawecki from public utilities Mühlheim. The public utilities also regard the local operator station as a plus point for the security of its employees when they are working on site. Security always plays a crucial role for systems that are part of a critical infrastructure: Alarm system, access control systems and basic monitoring options from the control system now increase the safety level of the plant in Mühlheim. Overall, products from five manufacturers were connected to the SAE IT-systems telecontrol for the substation. And thanks to the flexible visualisation software visIT, the data from all devices can now also be displayed for a clear overview. “The greatest challenge often lies in the coordination process”, explains Michael Kawecki. “It’s good if you can rely on the service providers there – and if the various equipment manufacturers know one another and the relevant technology of the other companies.”

Because no more spare parts could be obtained for the old station from 1972, the project was launched in 2012. The old and new systems will now be operated in parallel for one or two years more until all cable work is completed.