Blog, SF6-free

Sustainability as a Driver for Innovation in the Wind Energy Sector

An article by Nestor Ajuria Isasi, Global Renewable Energy Manager & Key Account Manager at Ormazabal

A look at recent history, a brief analysis of the various aspects of today’s daily life, and a vision of the future regarding the possibilities offered by the planet make it clear that it is essential to develop an approach that incorporates different sensitivities and stakeholders to achieve acceptable human development without harming the environment in which we coexist with nature. The paramount value of pursuing sustainability in human activity will drive much of the technological innovation in the years to come – let’s hope that this is the case for our own good.

Sustainability is like a tree with three main branches: environmental, economic, and social. This requires long-term care, consistency, and the commitment of everyone. Measuring its progress is key to the success of this commitment, which is why numerous indicators have been fostered that focus on different aspects of a product or activity, such as carbon footprint analysis in relation to a product, the social impact of certain economic activities at an individual and/or community level, or transparency and management of human diversity at the governance level. Ormazabal, as a natural part of its DNA, has been contributing its bit in this area for over 30 years.

As the Madrid painter Antonio Lopez would say, “a copy is a reverence”

It was Ormazabal who, thanks to its design of the ORMALINK solid busbar – which allows switchgears to be assembled together forming different configurations – defined the concept of the medium-voltage modular switchgear. This innovation was crucial in rationalizing the needs of customers and defining designs tailored to their needs without additional functions that consumed unnecessary space, materials, and energy. To paraphrase that great executive from an American “fruit company”, everyone copied us, and that innovation is now a global standard in the sector. As the Madrid painter Antonio Lopez would say, “a copy is a reverence”.

The definition of the modular solution along with Ormazabal’s commitment to integrating its protection and control systems in the switchgear facilitated the deployment of wind energy in Europe, pioneering worldwide both onshore and offshore. Ormazabal, with more than 100 GW of wind energy connected and protected worldwide, is now one of the leaders in medium voltage in the wind sector, as evidenced by its presence in 1 out of every 4 offshore turbines in Europe and the accumulation of wind projects in more than 50 countries. Something that started with having a product more tailored to customer needs and minimizing waste. In short, having a more sustainable product.

On the occasion of this WindEurope 2024 fair, which we also celebrate at home, Ormazabal takes a step forward and presents its complete product range for the wind sector using SF6-free technology. This technology represents a key qualitative leap in which Ormazabal has been working for over 10 years. The ZERO range represents the virtues that the company has demonstrated over all these years: a passion for innovation, achieving a much more sustainable product with a significantly lower carbon footprint than the current standard; and humility, working hand in hand with its most loyal customers whom we take this opportunity to thank for their collaboration and commitment.