World’s First 400kV Green Gas for Grid (G3) Substation

In Scotland, Omexom has been awarded the contract by SSEN Transmission to build the world’s first 400kV green gas substation (G3) at Kintore. The project is part of the client’s plans to upgrade its network in the east of Scotland from 275kV to 400kV and to facilitate increased renewable energy generation in the region.

“We are delighted to have Omexom on board to support us in delivering the world’s first 400kV Green Gas for Grid (G3) substation. We look forward to building on our already successful working relationship to deliver this industry leading and innovative substation, that will play a key role in supporting the transition to net zero emissions,” Alison Hall, SSEN Lead Project Manager, said.

The project consists of building a new 400kV GIS substation including design, civil works, installation of the GIS switchgear and all associated primary equipment and the diversion of overhead and underground cable circuits.

The design phase of the contract started in March 2021 and construction is scheduled from June 2021 to 2026.

“This project will not only bring more renewables into the UK grid’s energy mix, but its innovative substation will also significantly reduce emissions and could pave the way for new SF6-free 400kV substations across the country. We are delighted to be involved in this project and would like to thank SSE for trusting us once again with one of their major infrastructure projects,” Innis Simon, Director Omexom in UK and ROI, stated.


GE Supports Scotland’s Decarbonization

On December 03, 2020, SSEN Transmission announced it has awarded a contract to GE Renewable Energy’s Grid Solutions business to manufacture, deliver and commission a 420 kilovolt (kV) Green Gas for Grid (g³) gas-insulated substation (GIS) at its new Kintore 400 kV substation in Aberdeenshire, on the north-east coast of Scotland. This will support SSEN Transmission in moving a step closer to reaching its carbon reduction targets by building the transmission infrastructure necessary to connect and transport renewable energy, while avoiding the addition of about 350,000 tons of CO₂ equivalent to the grid.

The 420 kV g³ circuit breaker at the core of the substation is being co-funded over a two-year period by the EU’s LIFE Programme dedicated to climate change. SSEN Transmission joined GE’s LifeGRID project to contribute to the specification of the circuit breaker’s main performance requirements.

GE’s g³ technology is a game-changing alternative to sulphur hexafluoride (SF₆), an insulating and switching gas that has been used for decades in high-voltage substation equipment. Identified as the world’s most potent greenhouse gas by the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, SF₆ is estimated to contribute 23,500 times more emissions than CO₂, if leaked, and can remain in the atmosphere for up to 3,200 years.

While SSEN Transmission’s most material contribution to action against climate change is enabling the transition to a low carbon economy, the Scottish utility is also determined to tackle its own emissions. SSEN Transmission has set an ambitious goal to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by one third by 2026, making SSEN Transmission the world’s first electricity networks company to receive external accreditation for a Science Based Target in line with a 1.5°C global warming pathway.

g³ products feature the same high performance and reliability as SF₆ equipment but with a greatly reduced impact on the environment over their lifetime. According to life-cycle assessments (LCAs), based on international ISO 14040/14044 standards, their CO2 equivalent impact is reduced by 99%, compared to SF₆. At the same time, because g³ products have the same compact dimensions as SF₆ products, there is no increase in emissions during the manufacturing process due to additional material.

SSEN Transmission is one of 21 leading utilities in Europe – along with UK’s National Grid, France’s RTE and Germany’s TenneT – that have chosen GE’s g³ equipment to help reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Together, these utilities are avoiding the addition of more than 900,000 tons of CO₂ equivalent to the grid.

The 420 kV g³ substation is SSEN Transmission’s fourth g³ order. SSEN Transmission ordered the construction of a 1-km long g³-gas insulated line at its New Deer substation, as well as a 145 kV g³-gas insulated substation and a 420 kV g³ gas-insulated busbar for its Fort Augustus site.

GE’s ground-breaking g³ technology is a culmination of dedicated research and development efforts from teams in France, Germany, and Switzerland, in collaboration with the 3M Company.

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