ABB’s Flood Barrier Solution for Venice

Wednesday, April 6, 2016 @ 03:04 PM gHale


ABB will supply an integrated electrical and automation system for Mo.S.E. (electro mechanic module), a flood barrier system designed to block the high tides and storm surges that enter the Venetian Lagoon year after year through three inlets and regularly flood the historic center of Venice.

ABB received the automation order in 2015 and the electrical order in early 2016. Together the orders are just over $38 million.

The solution will utilize ABB’s Internet of Things, Services and People concept to manage data signals from more than 50,000 devices and coordinate operation of the entire flood protection system, consisting of flood barriers, navigation locks, and breakwaters to shield the lagoon from rising sea levels, winter storms and spring tides.

Mo.S.E. entails 78 flood barriers embedded in the sea floor at the three inlets to Venice’s lagoon. These water-filled steel boxes ranging in size from 18.5 x 20 x 3.6 meters to 29.5 x 20 x 4.5 meters can end up raised with compressed air in just 30 minutes, creating on short notice a barrier able to withstand incoming high water levels up to three meters above normal.

ABB’s Symphony Plus automation software platform will control the raising and lowering of the barriers according to pre-set parameters whenever high water approaches or leaves the lagoon.

ABB will also provide an integrated electrical automation solution enabling remote operators to control the power network thus ensuring a stable and reliable supply for the entire project. Under the terms of the newly won order ABB will supply the medium- and low-voltage switchgear, distribution transformers managed by the platform management system.

“The seamless integration of power and automation is a key element of ABB’s Next Level strategy to ensure safe, reliable and efficient operations for our customers,” said Peter Terwiesch, president of ABB’s Process Automation division. “These latest orders are another case where the connection of things, services, and people not only creates customer value but can also contribute to a better world.”