Switching station for Shetland HVDC link taking final shape

Switching station for Shetland HVDC link taking final shape (Video)

The construction of the main building exterior of the new switching station for the Shetland HVDC Link has been completed. The next step includes Hitachi Energy installing its equipment.

SSEN Transmission
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The Noss Head Switching Station will house the electrical components used in the Shetland HVDC link, which will allow the flow of electricity to be managed between three underground HVDC circuits – one from a converter station at Spittal in Caithness, one from a converter station at Kergord in Shetland and one to a converter station at Blackhillock in Moray. A spare connection bay has also been installed for future circuit connections. 

The system will connect to the existing HVDC system between Caithness and Moray, making use of capacity available in the Caithness-Moray subsea cable to allow onward connection to the existing onshore transmission network in Moray and beyond with minimum new infrastructure.

With the main construction of the building complete, Hitachi Energy has started work to install its equipment within the switching hall.

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In addition, cable pulling is underway in the switching hall for the control and protection of the electrical equipment, with work expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Over 20,000 native species of trees and shrubs have been planted around, with a further 15,000 to be planted once the site is cleared and office areas removed.

The commissioning process where all subsystems will be integrated and tested is also underway and is expected to continue into early 2023 in preparation for the first outage in 2023, which will see the first cables of the Caithness-Moray link connected to the switching station.

“We’re really pleased that construction of the Noss Head Switching Station building is complete, marking another major milestone in the Shetland HVDC link project,” said Martin Baker, SSEN Transmission Project Manager.

“This means that teams from Hitachi Energy can now progress with work to develop the electrical infrastructure inside, which will ultimately control the flow of electricity from the different HVDC routes and play a vital role in the overall development.” 

The Shetland HVDC Link will connect Shetland to the Great Britain energy system for the first time via a 260-kilometer subsea cable. The project is expected to be completed in late 2023.

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