Providing a cost-effective hybrid compensation solution to improve power quality in a cable factory

Challenges in the customer’s cable factory

Aberdare Cables factory in Johannesburg was experiencing power quality problems such as high voltage and harmonic distortions, voltage variations, and poor power factor. The main sources of power quality problems were Variable Frequency Drives (VFD), both AC and DC drives, as well as other dynamic loads in the plant. Harmonic distortions were clearly exceeding power quality limits defined in global power quality standards such as IEEE 519 1992. Whereas the power factor of the plant was as low as 0.75.

Low power factor and high harmonic distortions were impacting the cable factory in several ways. Production downtimes were frequent, resulting in production losses and high maintenance costs. High harmonic distortions were causing additional heating and stress in the electrical system. IEEE scientific studies prove up to 40% reduction of a factory’s lifetime if it is suffering from high voltage harmonic distortion.

Our Merus® Solution

Frequent breakdown of electrical components and high operational costs were the main concerns of the Aberdare engineering team. Our South African partner, RWW Engineering, performed a power quality audit and proposed a suitable solution to improve power quality. Detailed analysis of the power quality audit was mutually carried out by the technical teams of Merus Power and RWW Engineering.

The analysis highlighted the limitations of the existing compensation system. These included very slow response time and the incapability of canceling harmonic distortions. Merus Power designed a cost-effective hybrid solution by combining the benefits of both conventional and modern technologies. The proposed solution consisted of proven Merus® A-series Active Harmonic Filters and detuned capacitor banks.

Results after installation

The hybrid compensation solution was installed parallel to the loads to be compensated. When commissioned, the hybrid solution exhibited a real-time response to the reactive power needs of the dynamic loads thus constantly stabilizing the system voltage. The power factor has also gone significantly up and is currently close to unity. Merus® A-series Active Harmonic Filter as part of the hybrid solution provided harmonic cancellation capability and brought voltage distortions well below 5%.

Segment / Application

Cable manufacturing



Power quality issue

  • High voltage harmonic distortion
  • High current harmonic distortion
  • Voltage variations
  • Poor power factor

Merus® Solution

Customer Benefits

  • Optimized solution saves money without compromising performance
  • Extended plant lifetime
  • Power factor close to unity
  • Seamless plant operation
  • Harmonic distortion below limits at all times

Do you have any questions?

Please contact one of our salespeople with questions and inquiries.

Markus Ovaskainen


+358 40 539 2145

Riku Kalliomaa

Head of Sales,
Regions & Channels

+358 50 3323 020

Jaakko Poutamo

Sales Manager,
Energy Storage, Europe

+358 50 918 0012

Mikko Zavertkin

Sales Manager,
Key Accounts & OEMs

+358 40 5908 858

Viktoria Mansikkala

Sales Manager,
Baltics & Eastern and Southern Europe

+358 44 9 735 737

Juhani Jaatinen

Senior Sales Manager,
DACH, Benelux, France,

+49 160 762 4909 (DE)

Venkatesh Ramachandra

Regional Sales Manager,
Middle East

+971 50 55 38 465
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