In the early 1990's, Paul Marot, Founder and President of Virelec, identified a growing demand in Canada's power industry for vendor-independent, fully-engineered protection and control systems.
This demand, fueled by the release of digital IEDs, changed the landscape of power system secondary processes. The powerful new digital devices broke the rules; a single IED provided a number of applications and could be configured for different power system parameters.
The selection process became simple, but the engineering process became far more complex in order for the IED's features to be fully utilized. The traditional barriers between the protection, control and communication systems had to be overcome, because IEDs now provided all of these functions within a single box.
Additionally, utility engineers still wanted to use different IEDs for redundancy and security reasons, effectively limiting the IED vendors' ability to provide complete systems.
Virelec was created in 1995 to provide complete power system protection and control systems based on the users' choice of IED, by executing the demanding engineering process and ensuring that all the benefits of the new technology were exploited in the systems.
The company established its engineering and manufacturing facilities on Glen Erin Drive in Mississauga, and has moved several times since then to accommodate the growing number of staff and the increasing demand for panel assembly and wiring.
Virelec also identified the need to provide SCADA systems as users saw the benefit of communicating with the IEDs installed in their substations. A VAR (value-added reseller) status was secured with the powerful GE Energy Systems platform in 2000. Virelec was also awarded VAR status by GE Multilin, primarily for the SR and UR ranges of protection relays.