Decarbonizing electrical networks means more switching, how can we remain sustainable?

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As we transition to a decarbonized energy future, the demand for renewable energy sources is surging. The share of renewable energy in the European Union has risen dramatically over the years. In 2004, renewables accounted for only 9.6% of the EU’s energy mix, but this figure has more than doubled, reaching 22.1% by 2020. This substantial increase in the share of renewable sources highlights concerted efforts to transition towards a more sustainable energy landscape. 

However, the intermittent nature of these sources necessitates more frequent switching of energy, the process of transferring electrical power from one source to another through the use of switches. This can involve changing the direction of power flow, turning power on or off, or redirecting power to different circuits. This poses a challenge for industries like grid (utility), automotive & process plants, and data centers. As the demand for energy resulting from electrification increases, a shift in perspective will mainly be influenced by the growing frequency at which power is being switched. If End Users continue using outdated circuit breakers, it can lead to higher maintenance and replacement costs for crucial equipment like circuit breakers.  

Download the reference guide: How to transform electrical distribution with data

Understanding the operational constraints of circuit breakers 

Circuit breakers have a finite lifespan, measured in the number of operations they can perform before needing replacement. The average lifespan of a circuit breaker can vary depending on several factors. Circuit breakers are designed to last a long time, typically 30 to 40 years. The lifespan of a circuit breaker is closely tied to the health of your electrical system. 

High-quality circuit breakers tend to last longer. This can eliminate the need for frequent replacements, saving valuable time and reducing operational expenses. Therefore, end users are under pressure to maintain their equipment to the highest standards while prioritizing proper maintenance and investing in high-quality equipment to strive to reduce operational costs in the face of rising energy demands and electrification. 

Electricity 4.0, through digital innovation, connected equipment is the backbone of improvements. 

Decarbonizing our energy sources brings about a greater dependence on sustainable technologies. Unplanned downtime and the lifespan of a circuit breaker can have a significant impact on business operations and revenue.  

This is where the convergence of Electricity 4.0 with real-life applications becomes crucial. Electricity 4.0 through digital innovation is revolutionizing the energy sector by making it smarter, more efficient, and ultimately more sustainable. By embracing sustainable technologies, businesses can decarbonize their operations while maximizing uptime and longevity.  

To learn more about the transformative potential of Electricity 4.0, check out this article: Electricity 4.0: Revolution Is The Only Solution (  

EvoPacT HVX: The next-generation circuit breaker redefining resilience and longevity 

One of the main advantages of new-generation circuit breakers is to push the boundaries of specifications, especially resilience and longevity, with new equipment capable of performing over 30,000 operations. This can potentially last the entire lifespan of a switchboard which is a fundamental component of an electrical distribution system that acts as a centralized hub, enabling the safe and controlled distribution of power throughout the system.  This longevity of the switchboard means less demanding applications, saving time and reducing operational expenses for maintenance teams. By also integrating wireless sensors, digitally native breakers allow for real-time monitoring of equipment health status, reducing the need for manual checks and enabling more predictive and condition-based maintenance. This can help to avoid downtime and ensure optimal performance of switchboards. 

The good news is that these advancements are available today, with a new generation MV Circuit Breaker called EvoPacT™ HVX. Furthermore, by combining EvoPacT™ HVX with condition monitoring services, end users can experience up to a 40% reduction in downtime and maintenance costs. EcoCare is a comprehensive membership program provided by Schneider Electric, offering condition monitoring, predictive maintenance recommendations, 24/7 expert support, and access to innovative tools for managing and monitoring electrical assets. This not only enhances the reliability and performance of equipment but also helps to reduce the environmental impact of operations. 

Transforming ambition into action: The power of IMPACT Makers in the new energy landscape 

The EvoPacT™ HVX is designed with sustainability in mind which enables us to meet the demands of a decarbonized energy landscape while also navigating the challenges of frequent switching and remaining committed to a greener and more sustainable world. 

Together we can make a sustainable and long-lasting IMPACT with powerful EvoPacT™ HVX to build a future where decarbonization and sustainability go hand in hand, ensuring a resilient and environmentally conscious electrical infrastructure for generations to come. 

If you’d like to learn more, we encourage you to watch the video below:

Learn about EvoPacT™ HVX, our newest generation of Medium Voltage Circuit Breakers.

Discover how digital transformation of power systems can help you achieve digital transformation goals with active connectivity and IoT technology: How to Transform Electrical Distribution with Data (


About the author

Author Profile

Soham Ghosh, General Manager – Global Medium Voltage Component Product category Leader

Soham Ghosh has left an indelible mark in the field of Medium Voltage (MV) components. His journey began as a Tendering and Project Manager at Areva T&D in 2006, where he spearheaded critical projects related to MV equipment such as AIS, GIS, RMU, and PSS. 2020 to 2023 marked a pivotal phase in Soham’s career. As the Lead Channel Manager and Operational Marketing Head for the East and South regions, he oversaw a network of approximately 30 channels, comprising MV panel builders, MV Lic Partners, and Distributors. Under his leadership, a successful business model emerged, resulting in a remarkable 3x growth within just three years. Notably, his efforts played a crucial role in elevating RMU Lic business to record heights for Schneider. In July 2023, Soham embarked on a new global role as the Medium Voltage Component Category Manager and Launch Leader. His responsibilities now encompass managing the MV component portfolio, overseeing the P&L, devising strategic initiatives, and orchestrating new offer launches across countries worldwide. Soham Ghosh’s journey exemplifies resilience, innovation, and unwavering commitment to excellence. As he continues to shape the MV landscape globally, he remains at the forefront of understanding, defining, and delivering solutions that power the infrastructures of the future.

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