PB Design’s Black Start Controllers Deliver Significant Carbon Reduction Benefits

Black Start Controller

As a company dedicated to environmental sustainability, we have collaborated with Tunley Environmental, a leading sustainability consultancy, to assess and improve the environmental impact of our products. Our recent project focused on reviewing the Embodied Carbon of our innovative Black Start Controllers and we’re pleased to share the results from the assessment.
Our Black Start Controllers are critical components in electrical substations. They are designed to manage DC power supplies and ensure the reliable operation of the substation’s equipment. During power outages, the Black Start Controllers enable substations to restart autonomously after a shutdown – critical for grid resilience and recovery from blackouts. Our Black Start controllers:

  • safeguard essential DC supplies
  • prevent battery over-discharging
  • enable remote switchgear operation
  • automate the reconnection of batteries when power is restored.

An Embodied Carbon Assessment is a method used to measure and quantify the total greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production of a product, taking into account the extraction and processing of raw materials, transportation and manufacturing. By working with Tunley Environmental’s team of sustainability scientists, we were able to determine the carbon footprint of our Black Start Controller accurately.

The Embodied Carbon Assessment demonstrated that, per unit, our Black Start Controllers reduce embodied carbon by 909 kg CO2E, a 50% reduction compared to conventional solutions. This substantial reduction of almost a whole tonne of CO2 equivalents per unit is a direct result of our controller’s considered design and production process. Our approach incorporates sustainable materials and manufacturing practices that deliver long-term carbon benefits.

The assessment also highlighted our Black Start Controller’s ability to extend battery life, reducing the need for frequent replacements. Over the lifetime of a Black Start Controller, a single unit saves approximately 2.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents. This is particularly important for core substation control and safety functions that rely on uninterrupted DC power supplies, where traditional solutions often fall short in terms of carbon efficiency.

At PB Design, we believe that every product has a role to play in creating a more sustainable future. The Black Start Controller is just one example of how we are turning that belief into action on our journey to achieving carbon neutrality and net zero.

We are incredibly proud of these results and look forward to working closely with Tunley Environmental to further improve the sustainability of our existing products and develop new, environmentally friendly solutions.