Eaton to support electrical system construction for Panama Canal expansion

Power management company Eaton won an additional $5.2 million contract to provide critical electrical installation services for the Panama Canal Expansion Program.

Eaton’s contract won by Grupo Unidos por el Canal, SA (GUPC), the contractor responsible for the design and construction of the third set of locks of the expansion program under contract to the Panama Canal Authority. The expansion project is expected to be completed by the end of 2015 and operational in early 2016.

Eaton has a decades-long history as a provider of power distribution products and solutions to the Panama Canal, including support for electrical system design and construction in 2011. The latest contract, aimed at developing a robust, reliable and efficient electrical system, is the culmination of several years of planning, technical reviews and collaboration.

Under the additional contract, Eaton’s Electrical Engineering Services and Systems Division will serve as the prime contractor for the electrical installation across the east side of the Pacific lock of the expanded Panama Canal. Eaton will lead project management, quality assurance, safety and technical supervision and provide installation services for all of the electrical equipment it provided in previous contracts.

The range of power management solutions and products includes Arc Resistant Medium Voltage Switchgear, Pad Mounted Transformers, FlashGard Motor Control Centers, Clean Power Variable Frequency Drives and on-site equipment start-up supervision, commissioning, testing and training services.

The Panama Canal Expansion was more than 80 percent complete as of the end of December 2014. The resulting third lane of traffic will allow the passage of bigger vessels, which will double the canal's capacity and have an important impact on world maritime trade. The project will also help to protect and conserve the water resources of the Panama Canal watershed.

A new water-saving basin system will improve water efficiency, using seven percent less water than the existing locks. In addition, 60 percent of the water will be recycled in each transit. GUPC is a consortium led by Spain's Sacyr Vallehermoso, Italy's Impregilo, the Belgian Jan de Nul Group, and Panama's Constructora Urbana SA.

Eaton’s electrical business is a global leader with expertise in power distribution and circuit protection; backup power protection; control and automation; lighting and security; structural solutions and wiring devices; solutions for harsh and hazardous environments; and engineering services. Eaton is positioned through its global solutions to answer today’s most critical electrical power management challenges.

Eaton is a power management company with 2014 sales of $22.6 billion. Eaton has about 102,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 175 countries.

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