The UK’s largest electricity distributor, UK Power Networks (UKPN) has joined forces with Siemens Energy to introduce an environmentally-friendly switchgear technology.
The new solution aims to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by eliminating the use of sulphur hexafluoride (SF6), a potent greenhouse gas widely employed in the electrical industry.
The new “clean air” Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) operates at a voltage of 132,000 volts and is completely SF6-free.
Instead, it utilises a combination of dehumidified oxygen and nitrogen, resulting in zero global warming potential, UKPN has said.
Barry Hatton, Director of Asset Management at UKPN, said: “Switchgear plays a vital role in the safe and secure distribution of electricity to homes and businesses.
“Over time, we want to make more use of environmentally-friendly technology to support a net zero carbon future.
“This investment will pave the way for minimising the volume of SF6 on our network and using alternatives which maintain reliability and performance. We want to continue embracing innovative, sustainable and smart approaches to help enable the low carbon transition and minimise our own carbon footprint.”