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Post at 26 Jul 2017

Background
Frequented by royalty, celebrities and business leaders since its opening in 1929, the historic Grosvenor House offers the style, service and facilities expected from five-star hotels in London. With its stately forecourt graced by its original Lutyens wrought-iron gates, striking hotel reception and intimate library, its guests are introduced to the approachable elegance that extends throughout richly appointed guest rooms, palatial suites and executive-level rooms to lavish public spaces.

To maintain its operations to the highest possible standard – even in the event of power failure – the hotel relies upon a system of power distribution hubs and backup generators that are hidden behind the scenes. Should an interruption occur, these are designed to kick in quickly and provide uninterrupted electrical power to essential elements and services within the hotel.

As part of a regular maintenance cycle, engineers at the hotel recognised a potentially weak link in the power system; the proprietary control systems used to control and sequence the backup generators. Installed over ten years ago, the hotel recognised that obsolescence of components could become a major issue and its owners tasked Kent, UK based Entech Ltd. to provide an alternative, contemporary solution.

Entech was aware of the installation, having undertaken the original install. However this time, instead of creating a bespoke PCB-based solution, it turned to Rockwell Automation and its Allen-Bradley CompactLogix programmable automation controllers (PACs) from its Midrange solutions offering.

Challenge

There were two major challenges faced by Entech. The first was the actual operation of the hotel. As a 24/7 business there is no real downtime where this type of work can take place… especially over a long period of time. The second issue it faced was the restricted space in which to install the new hardware. The solution comprising the equipment from Rockwell Automation had to fit on top of the junction boxes already in place.

Results
  • Installation in restricted footprint
  • Use of exiting field wiring removed risk and shortened install time
  • Clear data feed to SCADA
  • Contemporary solution that will be much easier to expand/update in the future
  • Open platform that will communicate with third-party devices/protocols
Category: Infrastructure