Transgrid achieves concrete milestone for interstate transmission project


Transgrid, one of two transmission network operators delivering the 900-kilometre EnergyConnect project that will link the power grids of New South Wales (NSW), South Australia (SA) and Victoria, has completed the first big concrete pour for the foundations of a major new substation at Buronga.

Transgrid and its construction partner SecureEnergy, which are building the 700km NSW section of the EnergyConnect project from Wagga Wagga to the SA border, with a connection to Red Cliffs in Victoria, said 850 cubic metres of concrete had been poured during an 11-hour operation earlier this week to form the foundations for two 120 MVA synchronous condensers which will sit at the heart of the new Buronga substation.

Transgrid said an additional 850 cubic metres of concrete is scheduled to be poured later this month to complete the foundations for the synchronous condensers which will provide system stability and circuit strength to the grid, playing a key role in moving Australia to cleaner renewable energy.

The substation, spread over a 16-hectare site at Buronga near Mildura in NSW’s southwest, will also house five phase-shifting transformers, three power transformers and four shunt reactors.

“The Buronga substation will be one of the largest and most sophisticated in the Southern Hemisphere and act as the main hub for the connection between the three states, Transgrid Project Director Stephen Troughton said.

The EnergyConnect project, a joint venture between Transgrid and South Australian network operator ElectraNet, will link Wagga Wagga to Robertstown in SA via Buronga, with an additional ‘spur’ link between Buronga and Red Cliffs in northwest Victoria.

Troughton said the high-voltage interconnector, which will provide 800 MW of nominal transfer capacity in both directions, will integrate renewables into the grid and “allow energy sharing between NSW, Victoria and South Australia for the first time.”

One of the transformers that is being installed at the new Bundey substation.

Image: ElectraNet

While Transgrid is powering ahead with the construction of the NSW section of the interconnector, ElectraNet said the largest transformers in SA’s high-voltage network are now being installed at the new Bundey substation, about 160km north of Adelaide.

ElectraNet said the 275 kV/330 kV transformers, supplied by South Korean manufacturer Hyosung Corportation, will play a critical role in stepping up the voltage to flow across this new energy highway within the National Energy Market.

The SA component of the EnergyConnect project will also include upgrades to existing substations at Robertstown and Tungkillo.

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