Kinetic mtu PowerPacks for Middle East supercomputer facility

By Mike Brezonick03 November 2022

Rolls-Royce announced it has successfully commissioned the first six mtu Kinetic PowerPacks to secure one of the world’s largest supercomputers located at King Abdullah University for Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia.

mtu Kinetic PowerPack Six mtu Kinetic PowerPacks for uninterrupted power supply have been installed at the supercomputer facility of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. (Photo: Rolls-Royce Power Systems)

The fully customized, turnkey secure power system is equipped with dynamically rotating kinetic energy accumulators, providing the university’s Scientific Computing Data Center, which hosts the supercomputer with uninterruptible power. The successful commissioning of the first six units marks a significant project milestone towards the eventual commissioning of 12 total mtu Kinetic PowerPacks that have been delivered for KAUST’s Scientific Computing Data Center upgrade.

“The mtu Kinetic PowerPacks are state-of-the-art, uninterruptible electrical power systems that are designed for operating in extreme environments and provide the highest reliability of back-up power for the most critical and essential systems, such as healthcare facilities, airports, data centers and in our case, our future supercomputer Shaheen III, which will be the most powerful supercomputer in the Middle East and allow KAUST to greatly enhance its ability for scientific discovery and AI Innovation,” said Matthew Early, vice president, Facilities for KAUST.

“The work completed on this complex design-and-build order for KAUST has been extremely rewarding,” said Karim Hamzaoui, Operations Manager at Rolls-Royce Power Systems. “This was an opportunity for us to not only provide our world-class power generation products but also to showcase our ability to be a complete solution provider, taking on the full scope of all aspects of the project, from manufacturing and testing to delivery and installation, creating a customized solution from top to bottom.”

The mtu Kinetic PowerPacks were manufactured and underwent successful factory acceptance testing at the Rolls-Royce facility in Liege, Belgium. The 12 units, along with medium-voltage switchgears, were then shipped for installation at the site. The team from Rolls-Royce managed the complete local scope including construction and electrical infrastructure to ensure the site would be ready on time.

Each mtu Kinetic PowerPack has a power output of 1.6 MW, operates in medium voltage at 13.8kV, 60 Hz and is powered by an mtu 16V 4000 G74S diesel engine. With 12 total units delivered to KAUST, the PowerPacks are being installed in two groups of six systems each, with one available as a backup in each group. In the event of a power outage, the constantly rotating kinetic energy accumulator will both guarantee the starting of the diesel engine and instantaneously secure the critical load.

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