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ElectricityandControl December 2018In the final issue of Electricity + Control for the year, we discuss i-Automation and the smart factory and explore mass flow measurement and the relevance of Coriolis technology. We also investigate the methods in which new technologies are making single-phase solar inverters smaller, cheaper and safer.

Further to this, we examine the importance of transformers in regulating electricity for industry and discover the significant progress made by the researchers who are developing more efficient transformers for the future.

In addition, we showcase the Sidwadwa 66/11kV Substation, developed by Aurecon with the aim of bolstering the capacity of the substation that generates power to the municipality of Mthatha, and enhancing sustainable electricity to the region. 

As always, we also keep readers up to date on the latest product news and pertinent industry happenings.

As we bid farewell to 2018, we will no doubt all reflect on a year that was fraught with numerous challenges and uncertainties. However, let’s remain optimistic and return reinvigorated for a prosperous 2019, encouraged by the opportunities that lie ahead for our industry.

The Electricity + Control team would like to wish all our readers a joyful festive season and all the best for the New Year.


Control systems, automation + systems engineering

i-Automation and the smart factory

Peter Middleton, MechChem Africa

Talking at Omron’s Innovation Conference held at the CSIR, Driaan Coetzer, field application engineer and product manager for control and visualisation, opened proceedings with a presentation about i-Automation, overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) and Omron’s vision for the smart factory.


Flow measurement + instrumentation

Mass flow measurement and the relevance of Coriolis technology

Ashley Buck, Siemens

Mass flow measurement can be linked to asset management, keeping the fluid in motion or even simple tank balancing. Some applications, however, require accurate flow measurements to the extent that they influence product quality, health and safety, and ultimately can be the difference between making a profit or running at a loss. 


Hazardous areas + safety

Making single-phase solar inverters smaller, cheaper and safer

Freya Ward, Napier Partnership

New technologies allow photovoltaic (PV) inverters to switch at ever higher frequencies, and consequently they are becoming smaller and lighter. International competition and the move away from subsidies for new installations mean that there is strong pressure on their cost.


Transformers + substations

En-route to better transformers

Jan Berndorff, Paul Scherrer Institute

Transformers are indispensable in regulating electricity in industry and domestic households. The ground-breaking investigatory method of neutron grating interferometry developed at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) has opened up the possibility of observing magnetic domains at work as they establish magnetic fields inside the iron core.

Advancing substation infrastructure

Barry Grib, DHG Engineers

The growing need for reliable power supply has increased the demand for aging substation infrastructure redevelopment and driven new substation implementation into crowded cities and other demanding locations.