Latest phase of upgrade to power lines complete
A major section of the overhead lines that have connected Beauly to Dounreay for more than 50 years have been replaced with newer, more efficient conductors.
The 91 steel towers that have been in place between Beauly and Loch Buidhe since the 1960s have been given a new lease of life following the installation of new higher-capacity conductors and fittings which have increased the capacity of the local network by around 30% and enabled renew- able generation to be transported from the north of Scotland.
Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) lead project manager Daryn Lucas said: “The replacement of these lines has enabled us to increase the amount of renewable energy that can connect to our network without the need to build more towers.
“The rural location of our assets means that we have to consider the surrounding environment and wildlife when doing any works.
“As a responsible developer, we engaged with ornithologists at an early stage to monitor nearby nesting ospreys to ensure that our work did not cause any disturbance.”
Work has been under way since April 2016 to replace three phases of the upgraded 275kV circuit that each span a distance of 62km by SSEN’s principal contractor Amec Foster Wheeler and at its peak saw a workforce of more than 60 employed on the project.
The conclusion of this phase of the works means two-thirds of the Beauly to Dounreay transmission link is now upgraded with the final section of works planned for completion in 2020.
“Increased the capacity of the local network by 30%”
POWER UP: The overhead lines have connected Beauly to Dounreay for 50 years