Contact Us Back to Top

Utilities have used oil-insulated switchgear for decades. However, this type of switchgear poses operational, safety, and maintenance challenges.

Operating oil-insulated switchgear requires multiple steps, and its small viewing windows make it difficult for operators to clearly confirm switch status. Moreover, the gear usually lacks integrated grounding provisions, thus requiring parking cables and grounding elbows to isolate switchgear and ground cables. Arc-resistant oil-insulated switchgear is also not a standard offering.

Because oil must be routinely changed to ensure no moisture or other contamination impacts reliability, utilities waste valuable time and increase O&M costs that could be better spent on other, higher priority activities. Each time oil is refilled, there is a potential for leaks and environmental remediation.

Besides oil-insulated switchgear challenges, utilities are facing greater pressure to transition to insulation technologies that do not use sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) gas to meet forthcoming federal regulations. Meeting these regulations is further complicated by switchgear that must be regularly refilled with gas rather than being hermetically sealed for life.

Finding an alternative with enhanced operational, safety, and design advantages, lower maintenance, and sustainable gas-insulation alternatives can be challenging. But other switchgear options exist that meet these requirements.

The Solution: Vista and Vista SD Switchgear

Vista and Vista SD switchgear are designed to simplify utility operating tasks and enhance safety, and they have a smaller footprint compared to oil-insulated switchgear. Vista and Vista SD switchgear’s simple, single-handle operation and visible gaps allow for routine operations to be performed without confusion. The switchgear is also low-maintenance, reducing O&M costs. New, environmentally friendly design options are available.

Product Overview

green pad-mounted underground distribution switchgear

Vista Underground Distribution Switchgear

Vista switchgear solves difficult switching and protection problems and improves reliability. Built with the user in mind, it only takes one person to operate, and features a sequence of operations designed for safety. Vista switchgear is also available in new green designs using an SF6-free insulating gas.

Vista SD Underground Distribution Switchgear

Vista SD Underground Distribution Switchgear

Vista SD switchgear offers another environmentally-friendly option to solve switching, protection, and reliability challenges using solid-dielectric material instead of an insulating gas. With its highly visible breaks, flexible design, and front-facing terminations, Vista SD switchgear is particularly advantageous in vault applications.

SF6-Free Alternatives

Vista and Vista SD switchgear help utilities reduce SF6 gas use to decrease their total carbon footprint and reach sustainability goals. Vista SD switchgear uses solid-dielectric material, Vista switchgear is now available in green designs that do not use SF6 gas. Vista green designs use vacuum interrupters and 3M Novec 4710 Insulating Gas*. These design options have a 97% lower CO2e than the SF6 gas Vista switchgear. When factoring in the CO2 produced in manufacturing and the total lifecycle of the product, the Vista green designs have a lower total carbon footprint than other submersible switchgear alternatives while having all the same operational and design benefits as SF6 gas Vista switchgear.

*3M and Novec are trademarks of 3M Company.

A Green Alternative - The Advantages of Alternate Gas-Insulation Technology


Vista and Vista SD switchgear are built to minimize reliability risks and deliver significant cost savings.

Withstands harsh environments

Withstands harsh environments

Fully submersible, sealed, and protected

Fully submersible, sealed, and protected

Reduces maintenance costs

Reduces maintenance costs

Improves reliability over live-front switchgear

Improves reliability over oil-insulated switchgear

Arc Resistant

Certified arc-resistant*

One-hand operation

Simple operation

No fuse handling

No fuse handling

Leaf Icon

Green insulation technology**

*Applies to the gas insulated Vista switchgear design options only.
**Applies to the Vista switchgear green design options and Vista SD switchgear only.


Are you considering alternatives to oil-insulated switchgear? The guidebook summarizes how making the switch from oil-insulated switchgear to Vista and Vista SD switchgear can be advantageous from an operational and maintenance standpoint.


Zero Emissions

Green Insulation Technology

Insulation has drastically reduced or zero global-warming potential.*

Manual or Automatic

Manual or Automatic

Choose automatic, manual, or remote operational capabilities with a motor operator.

Dust, Corrosion and Leak-Proof

Dust, Corrosion & Leak-Proof

Prevent leaking, rusting, or contamination to switchgear with a sealed design.

Foot print icon

Smaller Footprint

The switchgear's compact, low-profile design minimizes footprint.

Visible Open Gap

Visible Open Gap

Easily confirm closed, open, and grounded** positions through large viewing windows.

Multiple Installation Styles

Multiple Installation Styles

Choose from pad-mounted, vault-mounted, single-way wind-turbine**, or UnderCoverTM style** units.

Cable-Free Grounding

No External Grounds

Ground medium-voltage cables using a standard internal ground switch. External grounds are not required.**

Low Maintenance

Low Maintenance

Minimal mechanical maintenance is required once a unit is installed; only an annual visual inspection is recommended.

Overcurrent Control

Overcurrent Control

Superior coordination, flexibility, and reliability are made possible with a self-powered and user-friendly control.

*Applies to the Vista switchgear green design options and Vista SD switchgear only.
**Applies to the gas insulated Vista switchgear design options only.

Case Studies

Customer successes achieved using Vista and Vista SD switchgear.

West Coast Utility

Improved reliability and perfect coordination, while use of UnderCover Style units makes switchgear virtually invisible in the community.

Read More

Midwest Utility

Improved reliability, while sectionalizing and coordination are provided with the existing scheme.

Read More

Arizona Utility

Utility standardizes Vista switchgear on its system after this project’s success.

Read More

Product Details

Contact us today to learn more.

Contact Us