The Royal Mint project from HiT Power

When HiT Power had the opportunity to work on an important battery storage project for the UK’s Royal Mint, they embraced the challenge. The Royal Mint required reliable clean power to its Welsh site; which is based on battery energy storage system (BESS), two wind turbines, a 2 MW solar farm and a combined heat and power (CHP) unit. HiT Power supplied four 100 kW (PS100) parallel bi-directional power inverters. HiT Power designed the power inverters using Rittal VX 25 enclosures.

Mohammad Abusara, Director at HiT Power, has been part of the team for 10 years. Mohammad obtained his PhD from the University of Southampton in 2004. He then worked for Bowman Power Group, where he led the development of a number of commercial products, including grid-connected inverters, line-interactive uninterruptible power supplies, AC microgrids, converters for hybrid vehicles, and sensorless drives for high-speed machines. Mohammad joined the University of Exeter in 2010, where he is currently an Associate Professor of Control and Power Electronics. He carried out internationally recognised research work in microgrid and published over 100 research papers. He founded HiT Power Ltd with Professor Suleiman Sharkh at the University of Southampton in 2014 to commercialise their cutting-edge research in grid-connected inverters.

Mohammad chatted with us about why they chose to work with Rittal to complete this exciting project.

“We started on our journey with HiT Power by initially repurposing off-the-shelf power inverters. However, an unforeseen opportunity arose, requiring the development of a specialised bidirectional inverter for battery storage.

Prior to even building the design, we made a bold commitment to sell one of our conceptualised designs. This posed a significant challenge as it placed us under pressure to deliver, without the luxury of rigorous testing. Nevertheless, we maintained confidence in our capabilities to meet the specifications. Despite the stressful period, we successfully delivered our inaugural project, earning the trust of our customers and paving the way for additional orders and applications such as the Royal Mint project. While undeniably challenging, this endeavor proved to be immensely rewarding for our team.”

Q: What challenges did you face during this project?

A: Oh lots, lots of challenges. Technical challenges. Limited resources were a big challenge, and the pressure of time to deliver was another challenge that we faced.

The biggest challenge lay in crafting the perfect solution for our customer. They needed specific performance criteria and capabilities that demanded rigorous testing to ensure compliance.

However, despite the difficulties encountered, our team remained committed to delivering a solution that not only met, but exceeded, the expectations of our customer.

One of the primary challenges we encountered revolved around cooling. Testing at full power necessitated further modifications to the cabinet, particularly to improve cooling efficiency. Fortunately, we found that the flexible design of Rittal enclosures allowed us to improve airflow effectively, ultimately enabling us to meet the specific cooling requirements we aimed for. This flexibility proved invaluable in addressing the challenge and ensuring optimal performance of the system in real-world conditions.

HiT Power Battery Storage

Q: What solutions were you looking for?

A: We required an enclosure solution that offered both flexibility and off-the-shelf convenience, allowing us to reconfigure components until we achieved our desired setup. Achieving optimal electrical and thermal performance demanded meticulous packaging design, along with the ability to make necessary modifications during testing. In this regard, Rittal emerged as the ideal partner to help us realise our objectives.

Lead times often pose significant challenges, particularly during times of disruption like the pandemic. Rittal distinguished itself as one of the few suppliers that consistently delivered without delays.

Q: How did you find your experience of working with Rittal?

A: My experience collaborating with Rittal has been consistently exceptional. Working with Rittal has always been effortless, thanks to outstanding customer service and dedicated sales representatives. Their response time is very quick, and whenever we've had specific applications, I've been promptly directed to the right individuals who can help.

When it comes to enclosure modifications, I simply provide the drawings, and Rittal executes them spot on, leaving no room for complaints. The process of requesting a quotation or placing an order has also always been seamless. I would confidently rate my experience with Rittal as a solid 10 out of 10!

Q: Are there any challenges you’re seeing in the energy sector in general?

A: The energy sector is undergoing rapid and transformative changes across all fronts, which creates challenges for key industry players. One significant shift is around the power network and its capacity to accommodate the growing influx of renewable energy sources. Targets for emissions reduction are in place, but the path to achieving these goals isn’t clear-cut, and people have differing perspectives about the solutions.

A major hurdle lies in the electrification of the transport sector, which needs substantial modifications and enhancements to existing infrastructure. We need clean energy to power vehicles, which means we need accessible rapid chargers. However, the lack of infrastructure capable of supporting these chargers poses a significant barrier.

Battery storage provides a great solution to address this challenge effectively. Integrating rapid chargers with renewable energy sources and battery storage can mitigate the strain on the electricity network and facilitate the widespread deployment of rapid charging stations. This relationship between rapid chargers, renewable energy, and battery storage is vital to ensure a seamless transition to clean transportation, while minimising adverse impacts on the grid.

Q: What are you excited for in the energy sector?

A: Well, with every challenge comes an opportunity. And we are in a place where we have lots and lots of opportunities to offer the market especially - in the battery storage market which is going to play a great role in the years to come. So it’s an exciting time!

Why is Rittal a good choice for projects in the energy industry?

Quality, flexibility, excellent customer support, it’s worth the money you invest in it. When you look at what you get out of the products, it outweighs other options.

I love Rittal’s enclosures because they make me feel free, I can use them however I want to. It makes things really easy for us to develop and build. I get what I need from them.

It’s been a pleasure working with Rittal.


Kenneth Bell, IE Area Sales Manager at Rittal Ltd UK, comments on the project.

“In my role as a salesman at Rittal, working closely with HiT Power has been an invaluable experience. Collaborating with HiT Power on battery storage solutions for the Royal Mint has not only showcased their innovative approach, but also demonstrated a shared commitment to excellence.

Their expertise in power solutions and our collaborative efforts have allowed us to tailor efficient, reliable, and cutting-edge solutions that align seamlessly with the Royal Mint's unique requirements. I am proud to have been part of a partnership that not only meets but exceeds the expectations of our esteemed client.”