Envirotemp™ FR3™ fluid delivers significant cost and performance efficiencies compared to mineral oil
Envirotemp FR3 fluid is a natural ester derived from renewable vegetable oils – providing improved fire safety, transformer life/loadability, and environmental benefits that are superior to mineral oil and unsurpassed by any other dielectric coolant. Because it is derived from renewable raw materials, it has a very low carbon footprint – unequalled by any other dielectric fluid option. Envirotemp FR3 fluid has been used in more than 1 million distribution and power transformers worldwide and is proven in transformers through 420kV. Some of the largest utilities and transformer manufacturers around the world trust their power and distribution transformers to Envirotemp FR3 fluid.
Envirotemp FR3 fluid has some unique features that can provide utilities and their OEM partners the ability to achieve greater cost savings and efficiencies.
Design smaller transformers to gain increased capacity
The common failure mode of an electrical transformer is caused by the degradation of the solid insulating system (cellulose paper). Subsequently, the (temperature) operating limits of a transformer are constrained by the thermal capabilities of the insulating system within each design.
For transformers filled with mineral oil, the typical average winding rise of the transformer is limited to 55°C (standard paper) and 65°C (thermally ungraded Kraft paper), yielding a hot spot temperature up to 110°C. However, a transformer filled with Envirotemp FR3 fluid can operate 20°C warmer than the mineral oil equivalent while maintaining the same life expectancy. Compared to mineral oil at the same operating temperature, Envirotemp FR3 fluid actually protects the insulating paper up to 8 times longer than mineral oil.
This high temperature capability enables:
- Increased loadability up to 20% with current transformers
- For space constrained locations, utilities can increase capacity without having to change their transformers
- For growing population areas, utilities can increase loadability and maintain performance reliability
- Design smaller, more efficient transformers that could use up to 15% less fluid and up to 3% less construction materials
High fire point provides safer, more reliable grid performance
Envirotemp FR3 fluid has a fire point of 360°C, more than twice the fire point of mineral oil. This greatly improves the fire safety for any transformer, particularly in heavily populated areas such as restaurants, malls, and urban communities. Since its introduction, there has been no reported fire-related failure with transformers filled with Envirotemp FR3 fluid.
Envirotemp FR3 fluid is classified by Underwriters Laboratories and FM Global as a less flammable fluid, and is also classified as a K Class liquid. With this improved fire safety, utilities can:
- Reduce clearances to buildings and equipment
- Eliminate the need for more costly fire mitigation systems
- Potentially reduce insurance premiums and liability reserves
Impact on asset life extension
Envirotemp™ FR3™ fluid extends insulation life by a factor of as much as 5-8 times because it has the unique ability to draw out retained moisture and absorb water driven off by aging paper. It also helps prevent paper molecules from severing when exposed to heat. These properties can result in an increase of overloadability and/or longer transformer insulation life, resulting in both lower life cycle cost and delayed asset replacement.
Ultimately biodegradable, non-toxic helps protect the environment
Envirotemp FR3 fluid not only provides reliable performance and increased fire safety, but it is also an excellent option to help utilities protect the environment in their communities.
- Made from 100% renewable vegetable oil
- Ultimately biodegradable as designated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- Non-toxic in both oral toxicity tests and aquatic toxicity tests
- Contains no petroleum, halogens, silicones or sulfurs
- Has a reduced carbon footprint – 56x less carbon emissions than mineral oil
- Carbon neutral according to Building Environmental Economic Sustainability (BEES) lifecycle analysis
Given the inherent environmental benefits of Envirotemp FR3 fluid, it is an ideal option for sustainable performance at low cost and suitable for areas such near waterways, highly populated areas, and near parks or other outdoor community areas.
Furthermore, there are many remediation techniques used in cleaning up spilled chemicals. Some, like bioremediation, can be quicker and cheaper than more common mineral oil remediation techniques prevalent in the utility industry today. The use of bioremediation is a superior technique for cleaning up spills of Envirotemp FR3 fluid because it is a biodegradable vegetable oil.
- Transmission & Distribution World November 2014 (PDF)
- Envirotemp™ Dielectric Overview (PDF)
- Envirotemp™ FR3™ Sell Sheet (PDF)
- R2000 Product Guide (PDF)
- R2010 Retrofill Guide Distribution (PDF)
- R2040 Retrofill Guide Power (PDF)
- R2110 Loading guide And B Factors (PDF)
- R2120 Cold Start Recommendations (PDF)
- R2020 FR3 Fluid Behavior in Cold Temp Environments (PDF)
- R2100 Transformer Power Factor (PDF)
- S10 Storage and Handling (PDF)