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Cooper Power Systems has debuted its new Smart VFI underground distribution switchgear, which is designed to provide a robust integrated solution for critical power requirements in smart grid environments.

Smart VFI switchgear combines advanced tap-and-loop protection with metering, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) functionality, and flexible automation capabilities in a single integrated package, the company says. The switchgear helps users reduce downtime and boost overall reliability when integrated into existing distribution automation systems or customized to fit feeder reconfigurations or distributed-generation grid-ties.

"All Smart VFI switchgear products have been designed with electric utilities and large power users in mind as a way for them to meet the challenges of an ever-increasing need for reliable power and greater operating efficiencies," says Rob Hardin, global product manager, underground distribution switchgear, Cooper Power Systems.

The products use resettable vacuum interrupters for immediate service restoration, eliminating the added expense and downtime associated with stocking and replacing fuses. In addition, the switchgear is filled with biodegradable E200 dielectric fluid that eliminates the need for sulfur hexafluoride gas.

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