Pedro Berriel
Director General
Power Electronics
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View from the Top

Troubleshooting the Industry 24/7

Wed, 02/22/2017 - 15:46

Q: What added value sets Power Electronics apart from other suppliers?

A: Worldwide, Power Electronics is used to competing with large-scale companies such as General Electric, Siemens or ABB, which have long been present in the market. Our company was founded 28 years ago as a family business, establishing excellent customer service as Power Electronics’ differentiating factor. Providing excellent aftersales service remains the core added value of our business and all our employees are trained under this philosophy. Power Electronics offers uninterrupted customer service, available 24 hours every day of the year. From the Director General to the field technicians we are always ready to attend our customers’ inquiries, no matter the time, which is something that no other company can offer. We are not the cheapest option in the market but we offer the best service. That is why companies like CEMEX, Baker Hughes, PEMEX and AHMSA have selected Power Electronics as their preferred supplier.

Q: Power Electronics is a leading supplier of frequency drives. What are their most popular applications?

A: Low and medium-voltage drives, also known as variable frequency drives, are used to regulate a motor’s speed to optimize its energy consumption. In Mexico we have used this product in different industries, including the mining and oil and gas sectors. For instance, we have installed a number of variable frequency drives in PEMEX’s facilities where electrical centrifugal pumping is used to extract oil from wells, an increasingly important application as the artificial- lift technique is now used in most Mexican oil fields.

Our solution controls the pump’s speed according to the underground conditions, using only the amount of power required at a particular point. In the renewable energy industry our drives are used in thermal solar power plants where a fluid is pumped through a pipeline network to absorb the sun’s heat, which is concentrated by a structure of mirrors. In this application, our solutions control the pumping of the fluid according to the plant’s requirements. However, we have not yet introduced this application in Mexico.

Q: What innovative projects has Power Electronics developed for the Mexican energy sector?

A: We are analyzing the possibility of developing a seawater desalination plant powered by solar energy, making saline water drinkable through a reverse osmosis process. The project is being planned for Baja California because this region has particular challenges regarding water and electricity resources. In terms of connectivity, the Baja California peninsula is considered an island since it is not connected to the National Electric System, but at the same time it has one of the largest solar parks in Mexico, located near to where the desalination facility would be. In the same region, we are developing a solar PV project in collaboration with GRUPOTEC, which is in the final stage. So far, the desalination project remains on hold because we still need to figure out certain bankability aspects. We are certain this project will be executed because the distribution of drinking water across the peninsula is extremely complicated and water demand is projected to increase.

Q: What position does Power Electronics want to hold in the future Mexican energy sector?

A: In Mexico’s energy industry, our focus has historically been on the oil and gas sector but we expect energy generation, with particular focus on photovoltaics, to become increasingly important for us. Our goal is to provide 25 percent of the inverters that will be installed in solar projects in Mexico and we are now working to adapt all our equipment to suit CRE’s interconnection requirements. After the results of the first long-term power auction we expect the photovoltaic market to grow strongly in Mexico, surpassing other renewable energy sources, which will be beneficial for the country’s energy system and the companies that are working in this sector. On the industrial side, we expect to continue working with current and potential clients, providing the best solutions in the market.