Safety for solar electricity
Electricity from the sun: For Ullrich Goray, Friedhelm Lammers and Frank Blichmann, this is far more than just a simple hobby for environmentally-minded home owners. After all, emission-free electricity generation is one of the products offered by their firm: Teams from ABA Elektrotechnik install electrical systems throughout Germany. The best sales arguments of the three directors are, however, their own investments. For as well as a solar tower at the company’s parking lot and – naturally – solar cells on the roof of their building, Messrs. Goray, Lammers and Blichmann have now also created the biggest photovoltaic system that so far exists in the whole of the District of Unna – some 200 metres away from their own firm, on the roof of a factory building, with 1200 solar modules covering an area of 4400 square metres. This investment is protected by 90 SIBA photovoltaic fuses – five in each of the 18 current inverters.

Biggest photovoltaic system in the District of Unna
Wechselrichter Photovoltaik mit SIBA-Sicherungen
  One of 18 current inverters being installed with the photovoltaic plant of ABA Elektrotechnik in Kamen (see above). SIBA-PV-fuses provide optimal safety.
  PV-Sicherungen von SIBA in einem Solarstrom-Wechselrichter
The installation, for which Goray has specifically rented use of the roof, has an output of 210 kWpeak. “This is a win-win situation all round – the owner of the factory is letting what would otherwise be useless roof space, while we are investing in clean energy and our own future, are able to collect the payment due for the electricity fed into the grid, and can show our customers a soundly planned and constructed full-size system,” says Goray. The installation will, however, take 15 years to pay for itself, for this demonstration project was naturally not built for free. It took two months to install, and involved some complex cabling, with no fewer than seven 40mm-diameter aluminium cables (“Copper would have been too expensive”) leading from the roof into the ground, and from there the approx. 200 metres to the purpose-built transformer station located on ABA’s premises, which also houses the meters.

ABA: Electricity with broad portfolio
It is a good thing, therefore, that ABA was able to do all the work itself. After all, the range of activities offered by the Kamen-based firm covers the entire field of energy engineering, with customers including municipal utilities as well as major industrial companies. “We do everything except domestic installations,” Goray explains. And not only in the whole of Germany. “We have also been involved in projects in Korea, for example, or in the construction of a steel works in Bulgaria,” Goray continues about his firm, which employs 13 people. Its activities range from low-voltage switchgear to medium high voltage systems and go right up to the high-voltage sphere – like the transformer station. But in all these applications, the ABA experts rely on fuses made in Lünen. Goray opens the door to the transformer station at a laundry business in the adjacent industrial estate: Beside the switchgear can be seen spare high-voltage fuses bearing the yellow and red SIBA label. “Virtually all the fuses we use are from SIBA. My aim is to install the systems and then leave them to work – preferably trouble-free and maintenance-free. And to achieve that, every component counts. With SIBA, I can be sure that everything will be OK.”
While the three from ABA produced their first solar energy installation as long ago as the mid-1990s – and even at that time there were already special PV fuses available from SIBA – this area of activity still accounts for only around five percent of ABA’s business. The vast bulk of its activities consists of classical electrical engineering at industrial companies. “We have very close ties with General Electric, for instance,” says Goray. With transformer stations for wind energy, ABA has developed a further field of business for itself in the regenerative energy sector. “Also in this case, we naturally use SIBA products,” Ullrich Goray continues, referring to the fact that the Lünen-based fuse manufacturer also has products in its portfolio that are specifically designed for this application.

Advantage SIBA: Advise from experts quickly available
Among the reasons why SIBA is always first choice for Goray and ABA is that expert assistance is always quickly available. There was a case, for instance, where a fuse in a wind energy project triggered unexpectedly. “So I sent it off to Lünen and asked them to cut it open and find out what had happened,” Goray says. “As a result, we found out that it had become too warm for the fuse in the place where it was installed because the space was insufficient. So we were able to remedy the problem – also for the future.”
Thanks to this expertise, SIBA fuses will presumably again be used in the next photovoltaic system that is now scheduled for construction. The demonstration project in Kamen has already convinced one of ABA’s customers in Greven, who has also ordered his factory roof to be fitted with solar cells. Which seems highly appropriate, since the factory produces boilers for biogas plants.
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Joachim Skock

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