CGM meets sky-high standards at Ethiopian airport

A generator set solution, provided by Italian manufacturer CGM and powered by Perkins, is helping the Addis Ababa airport keep its cargo operation running even when there’s turbulence in the local main electrical supply.

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport in Ethiopia is the principal hub for national airline Ethiopian Airlines, which serves destinations across the country, the African continent and worldwide. As one of the world’s capital cities at high elevations, Addis Ababa’s airport sits some 2,300 metres above sea level.

Located in the Bole area, 6 kilometres southeast of the city centre, the airport has been the country’s main international gateway for nearly half a century. More than 1.6 million passengers use it each year.

The airport recently opened a new cargo terminal to increase its total capacity to around one million tonnes per year. As such, it is now the largest cargo terminal on the African continent.

For both the airport and those who use its cargo facilities, a continuous source of power is crucial to its ongoing success. Any power failure would bring its advanced machinery, technology and cargo-processing equipment to a halt, resulting in stalled operations and dissatisfied customers.

The airport approached Italian generator set supplier CGM for support in finding a standby solution; one that would ensure its cargo terminal continued to operate without disruption during any failure in the main electric supply.

CGM meets sky-high standards at Ethiopian airport

Underpinned by innovation

CGM, established in Vicenza, Italy in 1980, is a proven leader in manufacturing high quality, reliable generator sets. All the work it does is backed by by cutting-edge research and development.

The company provides a broad range of power options from 1 to 2000 kVA, driven by petrol, diesel or natural gas/LPG, to meet the wide-scale needs of its customers.

Key product lines include lighting towers, engine-driven welders, tractor-mountable and other transportable generators as well as other products designed to unique customer specifications. All of CGM’s equipment is carefully tested within the business and fully complies with industry regulations.

For this installation, CGM selected three generator sets driven by Perkins® 4008-30TAG3 engines. Delivering up to 1250 kVA of standby power, the engines have proven reliability in challenging environmental conditions. With excellent power-to-weight ratio, outstanding load acceptance and impressive derate values, they were the right choice to meet the airport’s soaring standards.


Optimum output at high altitude

Derate values were particularly important to the customer because of the high altitude at which the generator sets would operate. The 4008-30TAG3 really delivers in this area with the capability of achieving optimum power output, without derate, at up to 3,000 metres.

The generator sets installed at Addis Ababa Bole airport have been operating since 2016. They run for 1,500 hours per year, providing reliable back-up power any time it’s required.

“We selected these Perkins engines because of their fantastic derate value at altitude. Our technical team was really satisfied with the fast synchronisation between the units and the great step load at the airport’s 2,300 metre altitude” ”
Stefano Chilese, Managing Director, CGM