Innovative busbars for Trafford Centre


The Trafford Centre, Manchester’s £1.4 billion shopping and leisure destination, has specified the innovative Upower busbar during an upgrade of its electrical switchgear.

With six department stores, 280 stores and 47 restaurant, cafés and bars, the smooth delivery of power is crucial at the mall.

The Centre wanted to add extra circuits to cope with growing demand for power and to provide capacity for the future. Additionally, space in the Centre’s switch rooms is at a premium. Therefore it was crucial that the right equipment was selected.

The Upower busbar unit uses a unique and patented design to deliver new levels of safety and reliability in an extremely compact size. Its clever method of conductor fabrication produces a busbar system that’s fully encapsulated and insulated, dramatically saving space and improving electrical integrity.

The system was installed at The Trafford Centre when it was built in 1998. “We’ve been very happy with the Upower system,” says The Trafford Centre’s Project Manager Chris Cowap. “So when it came to extending our capacity that is what we went for.”

To redo the circuits, Cowap had to power down the control room and management suite at the Centre in a busy mall that is open seven days a week. During power down, Cowap took the opportunity to install extra switching capacity so that in the event of there being a requirement for extra circuits in the future, these could be added without disconnecting the system.

The Upower busbar’s design means it operates with all incoming devices and ensures compatibility with the widest possible range of manufacturers’ switchgear without the need for adapters.

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