New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the state will provide significant design and engineering expertise to build a power system in Puerto Rico, in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria

The New York State will assist in modernising the electric grid of the island, which faced catastrophic damage following the hurricane, and making it more resilient against future storms.

As part of the electric grid modernising effort on the island, New York State will assist Puerto Rico in the construction of an automated digital substation, with the capacity to process up to 40MW.

Planned to be built at the Monacillo Control Center in the San Juan-metro area, the automated digital substation will serve as a model for rebuilding the 17 substations that were flooded during the hurricane.

Additionally, New York Power Authority engineers will help in designing a substation automation lab at Monacillo. The lab will be used to train engineers and technicians on the latest substation automation technology.

Cuomo said: “New York will not leave our fellow Americans behind and will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with Puerto Rico on the path to recovery until the job is done.

“The state-of-the-art technology and training expertise we are providing today will help the island rebuild stronger and make it more resilient in the face of future storms so that our brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico don’t have to relive the nightmare of Hurricane Maria going forward.”

NYPA and PREPA team up to reconfigure Culebra power plant

NYPA will also collaborate with Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) to reconfigure the Culebra power plant to ensure it supplies power to Culebra and Vieques despite power disruption from the mainland.

Additionally, the partners will design two planned hybrid-microgrid projects on Culebra and Vieques. The projects will be equipped with solar panels, battery storage, and emergency generators, to make them storm resiliency and back-up power options.

NYPA will also work with PREPA to build new substations and underground power lines in the storm-hit Humacao Industrial District.

NYPA president and CEO Gil Quiniones said: “Since day one after Hurricane Maria, under Governor Cuomo’s direction, NYPA has been on the ground assisting Puerto Rico with restoring its electric system and hardening it for future potential storms.

“Puerto Rico is particularly vulnerable to devastating tropical storms and we at NYPA are honored to bring New York State’s utility expertise to the islands to help them harden their systems and provide affordable and renewable energy to residents and visitors on these beautiful islands.”

Last year, Cobra Acquisitions secured a $900m contract from PREPA to complete the restoration of the critical electrical transmission and distribution system components in Puerto Rico.