ABB to control gas storage facility in UK

May 18, 2011 - ABB won a Main Automation and Instrumentation contract for a new natural gas storage facility in Cheshire, United Kingdom. The facility is designed to hold over 400 million cubic meters of gas, and will be controlled by ABB System 800xA along with ABB Instrumentation. The Stublach facility is being built for Storengy (a GDF Suez company) in Cheshire and will store gas in salt caverns deep underground.  

The processing plant consists of gas compressors which move the gas between the caverns and the United Kingdom’s National Grid Transmission System (NTS). Additionally, an on-site drying plant removes water from the gas before it is returned to the NTS. The site is expected to be in operation in excess of 25 years.

Acting as the Main Instrumentation and Automation Contractor (MIAC), ABB will provide engineering design services for the Automation, Safety Instrumented System (SIS) along with the supply of an 800xA Integrated Process Control system and 800xA based SIS, ABB and third party instrumentation to Jacobs Engineering who are responsible for Engineering, Procurement and Construction of the plant.  

The ABB system will control the import of gas into the caverns for storage and export of Gas into the National grid; this includes the complex control required to handle these transfers in both free flow and compression modes.

Plant safety is critical and the TUV certified AC 800M HI controllers along with the field devices are used as the Safety Instrumented System to control the processing plant, associated pipelines and the well heads, which are situated up to 2 km from the processing plant.  This will be engineered by the ABB TUV certified engineers based in the UK.

Availability and efficiency of the plant are crucial; the System 800xA controllers will be in a redundant configuration to ensure these key factors. The 800xA system also interfaces to fire and gas monitors around the plant, third party packages such as the compressor unit controls to monitor and control the plant. This provides integrated visibility for the operators of the process, plant assets along with the safety aspects for both the plant and personnel.

A significant factor in the selection of ABB for this project was ABB’s portfolio of automation, safety and instrumentation products along with the global success of the System 800xA, its Main Automation Contractor capabilities in the UK and the fact that ABB are just completing a similar installation for gas storage in Cheshire, UK.

The ABB System 800xA control system along with ABB Instrumentation provides inherent asset monitoring facilities to assist operators manage and maintain the plant to increase productivity and reduce energy usage.

ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 124,000 people.

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