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    A 5 million euro contract for Rectiphase!

    A subsidiary of Schneider Electric in France, Rectiphase has just signed a superb contract for 5.1 million euros with the Energy Transmission Department in Sonelgaz, the Algerian Electricity and Gas Company. The materials supplied will be used for reactive energy generation and power factor correction for the Algerian company's Medium Voltage power grid.

    > An international call for tenders
    Sonelgaz' mission is to generate, transmit and distribute electrical power as well as transport and distribute natural gas in its territory. Sonelgaz launched its "International call for tenders" to meet all of its reactive energy requirements and to operate its electricity grid under optimal economic and technical conditions.
    This call for tenders consisted of a single project package to supply "capacitor banks". These capacitor banks (CP 254 cubicles) are used for automatic correction of reactive power, and are intended for power distribution companies, including Sonelgaz. The core products marketed by Rectiphase, capacitor banks play a vital role in all electrical installations because they generate the reactive power required to correctly operate any electrical system.

    > A dynamic and multicultural team deliver a winning result
    The contract was signed February 18, 2003 and all the cubicles will be delivered by September 2003. The role of Schneider Electric's subsidiary in Algeria was capital. Its representative's perseverance and excellent knowledge of the power industry were decisive. And Rectiphase's export sales team didn't economize its energy or the miles covered.

    > The keys to the Success
    Schneider Electric proved its ability to respond to very specific requests thanks in particular to Rectiphase's special expertise in reactive energy. Schneider Electric's offer, a comprehensive solution covering all of Sonelgaz' requirements (a package including power factor correction, protection and control and monitoring) was a real advantage vis-à-vis very active competitors. Indeed, they all proposed to subcontract the entire "power factor correction" part of the project.
    The added value of the solution proposed by Schneider Electric enables Sonelgaz to optimize the electrical energy supplied to its customers at all times. Since the grid's reactive power requirements can fluctuate depending on weather conditions, Rectiphase proposed mobile capacitor banks mounted on metal "skids" to facilitate movements. This allows the power factor correction module to be moved where it is needed at any given time.
    In this specific case, customer benefit is not a vain phrase since, according to recent research, these investments will enable Sonelgaz to significantly improve operating costs (PHI costs) for the entire power grid. The return on investment achieved should result in savings equivalent to one full year of reactive power generation in a conventional electrical power station.

    Sonelgaz has been using this type of material for more than 20 years to optimize the efficiency of its power grid, but this contract is the largest the Schneider Electric subsidiary, Rectiphase, has obtained to date.

    > Zoom in on Rectiphase
    Rectiphase is a Schneider Electric subsidiary based in France. It specializes in reactive energy* and harmonic filtering. It employs 200 people and more than 70% of its sales are made in exports.

    *A few precisions about reactive energy:
    An alternating current electrical system supplies two forms of energy: active energy and reactive energy. In manufacturing processes that use electrical energy, the manufacturing plant only transforms active energy into mechanical, thermal, light, etc. energy. Reactive energy is used to power magnetic circuits in electrical machines (motors, autotransformers, etc.).

    Reactive energy is expressed in kilovar per hour (kvarh). It is used in particular to create the magnetic field in motor coils and transformers without which operation would be impossible. Contrary to active energy, reactive energy is said to be "unproductive" for the user.

    Active energy is expressed in kilowatt per hour (kWh). It is useable, after transformation by the receiver, in the form of work or heat.