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Article Date: 8th March 2013

Eaton - Merseytravel Chooses Eaton’s Memshield 3 Boards for Historic Building

Electrical Systems - Power Distribution - Power Quality - Power Control

Eaton Building

When it became necessary to replace electrical distribution equipment in the Grade II listed George’s Dock Ventilation and Central Station of the Mersey Road Tunnel building, Merseytravel chose Memshield 3 smart boards and MCCB panelboards from Eaton as the key elements of the new installation.

The decision to use Eaton products was based on their versatility, performance and value for money, on the support provided by Eaton engineers who carried out a detailed site survey before the order was placed, and on Merseytravel’s positive experience of working with Eaton on previous projects.

Opened in 1934 and a widely admired art deco structure, George’s Dock Ventilation and Central Station building houses not only one of the ventilation shafts for the Mersey Road Tunnel but also offices that were, in former times, home to the tunnel operator’s administrative team. The building is still in full use but a recent review identified that the electrical installations did not have sufficient capacity to meet current and planned future demands, and that the equipment was reaching the end of its useful life.

It was therefore decided that the building’s electrical systems should be replaced in their entirety, but this project was not without its challenges. The space available to accommodate the riser cables was very limited and, as is typical of a building of this age, the risers were not aligned vertically. However, significant modifications to the structure of the building were out of the question because of the building’s listed status and architectural value.

For this reason, the decision was taken to use Eaton’s MCCB panelboards as their removable cross rails meant it was possible to lay cables into the board instead of feeding them through a gland plate aperture offering significant time savings and making the installation much easier.

Other key requirements of the new distribution system were that it should provide flexibility to cope with future needs, and comprehensive metering in line with Part L2 of the Building Regulations.

To meet these requirements cost-effectively, Merseytravel selected Memshield 3 distribution boards. These space-saving compact boards are available with MCCB incomers rated up to 250A and can support sub-loads up to 125A, which means that they can often be used in place of larger and more costly panel boards.

For this project, Memshield 3 smart boards, which split the power and lighting loads for easier metering, were used in conjunction with Memshield 3 meter packs. The meter packs accurately measure the energy usage of groups of loads and, as well as displaying this information in real time, they also make it available to the site’s building management system via a Modbus RS485 interface.

“The electrical equipment from Eaton has proved to be an excellent match for our needs,” said Councillor Liam Robinson, Chair of Merseytravel “In particular its compact construction has made it possible for us to equip the building with a reliable, future-proof electrical installation without requiring us to make structural changes for which it would have been difficult to get permission.”

“We’ve also enjoyed excellent support from the Eaton engineers, who have worked with us at every stage of the project to help us choose the right equipment and to make sure we could squeeze it into the very limited space available. We’re very happy not only with the end result of the project, but also with the value for money.”

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