In April of 2010, UEA was engaged by Fujitsu to undertake preliminary investigative work into the feasibility of establishing a data centre at Greystanes from the perspective of providing power to the site. In undertaking these works UEA explored a number of options to provide power supply to the site. The scope of the works was to develop a concept plan that was a sustainable design that allowed the initial stage of the data centre to be established in a small amount of time, whilst being scalable to allow for the ensuing stages to be constructed without impacting on the operation.
When all the stages are completed the project will deliver the largest data centre in Australia. The proposed maximum demand for the project is such that the first stage of works requires a 7MVA supply with n+1 redundancy with a total load of 60MVA expected once the project is completed. To put this into perspective, a zone substation for power distribution to 6 – 10 suburbs has a total capacity of 90MVA.
The findings of the investigation determined that the optimal solution was to propose that the site be supplied by two new 11kV underground feeders from the Endeavour Energy zone substation to terminate into a High Voltage Customer (HVC) Substation using 33kV switchgear (energised at 11kV) to supply the first stage of the project which would establish supply to the site in a relatively short timeframe. The subsequent stages would be supplied via two 33kV feeders which have the capacity to service the 60MVA load with n+1 redundancy. Due to longer lead time in establishing such an asset this was deemed to be suitable for the later stages of development. A preliminary first stage plan and a final master plan were developed as part of the feasibility study.
Having completed the feasibility study, the project moved into the design phase. UEA developed the design and construction scope in the investigation and planning phase and were successfully awarded the design andconstruction contract for the first stage of development. The design commenced with an exploration into various options for the supply of 33kV switchgear and transformers. In doing so, UEA reviewed the lead-time and specification of the various suppliers to ensure that the technical and commercial requirements for the project were met. Having settled on a preferred supplier the design focused on the technical elements of the project which included:
- earthing design,
- protection systems design and grading,
- cable rating requirements and specifications,
- civil requirements to service all future stages,
- building and internal layout,
- standards compliance,
- integration with Endeavour Energy network, and the
- underground 11kV feeder design from Endeavour Energy zone substation.
These design aspects were conducted with two primary objectives in mind:
- the design had to be scalable and sustainable for all future stages of the project and
- the design needed to integrate with the other internal power systems for the project.
This was achieved through extensive consultation and coordination.
The first stage substation design consisted of ten 33kV modular switchgear cubicles and four 11kV 2.5MVA transformers supplied by two 11kV 2.5km feeders. The internal interconnecting cables were selected using 33kV cables to allow for future stages of development while having the current carrying capacity to supply the transformers at 11kV. This meant that cable rating calculations had to be undertaken to ensure the stage one and future stage service requirements were adhered to. The final master plan for the project was developed using forty-five 33kV switchgear cubicles and thirty-three 33kV 2.5MVA transformers.
With the tight time constraints of the project the design phase was compressed and also coincided with the construction phase of the project. The management of the project was achieved with a comprehensive project plan which allowed the critical path for both design and construction tasks to be monitored to ensure that the project was completed on time and as per budget.
During the construction of the project, the client requested that UEA investigate methods that could be adopted to reduce the timeframe for the site to be energized. Additional resources were assigned to the project and UEA worked with their supply network to reduce the lead-time of the various critical components required for the project. In undertaking the works it was found that there were some latent obstacles which posed risks to the project and needed to be overcome to allow the project to be completed. The main problems arose from the existing infrastructure installed by others, prior to the project commencing, had not been constructed to a satisfactory standard to allow the incoming 11kV feeders to be installed. Another issue arose from protection coordination between the DRUP’s contractor and the Endeavour Energy network. UEA addressed the issues in a timely manner to manage and minimise the risk to the project.
UEA constructed the 33kV switchboard and undertook all the transformer and cable installation for the substation. Other aspects of the project that UEA were responsible for included:
- development of a high voltage operating protocol,
- drafting of an installation safety management plan,
- high voltage testing of the installation to achieve compliance,
- installation of high voltage tariff metering,
- installation of high voltage earthing grid.
UEA met the challenge of this project and delivered a one-stop solution for the data centres power requirements. The HVC substation was energised four days ahead of schedule and the project was a resounding success. This project has now set UEA apart in the market as an innovative and progressive company that can engineer solutions to meet any power requirement.
For more information about this project or UEA Electrical, please send enquiries to Mark Bampton.