Atlantis announced that its flagship MeyGen project in northern Scotland is now connected to the 33kV Ness of Quoys distribution network following the successful installation of one of the longest underground 33kV power export cables in the UK by the network operator, Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc (“SHEPD”).
The connection complies with the National Grid Code and has required over 25km of distribution network upgrades along with infrastructure upgrades at two substations.
When fully built out, the 400MW project is expected to generate enough predictable and emissions free electricity to power 175,000 Scottish homes.
The first tidal turbines will be installed over the coming months and the project remains on track to deliver first power in the second half of 2016.
Some of the facts and figures behind this milestone:
The original grid agreements for this connection were signed by MeyGen in 2010 to secure the capacity
This connection required over £1m investment to be made pre financial close of Phase 1A in order for it to be ready on time for the project
Required over 25km of distribution network upgrade and upgrades at two substations
Includes one of the longest underground 33kV underground cable runs in the country required to avoid the visual impact of overhead lines
Required MeyGen and SHEPD to negotiate wayleaves with 23 local landowners
At 14.9MW capacity this is classed as a Large Power Station connection in this part of the country
Requires full National Grid Code compliance- this is the first tidal generation project to go through this rigorous diligence process
Atlantis CEO Tim Cornelius said: "The connection of our flagship MeyGen project to the SHEPD distribution network marks a huge technical major milestone for Atlantis and the tidal stream industry more broadly.
"It has involved years of hard work, persistence, perseverance and determination by our team and all of the contractors and consultants involved in the onshore work scope. We believe this is now the world’s largest energised grid connection of any commercial tidal stream array.
"We have made great progress over recent months at MeyGen on turbine and foundation preparation and we very much look forward to delivering first power to the grid later this year, which will be a huge event for our company and the global marine power industry."