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Contracts signed for Eastern Green Link 2 cable and converter stations

  • Eastern Green Link 2 (EGL2) is a 525kV, 2GW high voltage direct current (HVDC) subsea transmission cable from Peterhead in Scotland to Drax in England delivered as a joint venture by National Grid and SSEN Transmission
  • The joint venture has signed a contract with the Prysmian Group to supply around 1,000km of cable for the project and a contract with Hitachi Energy and BAM for the supply of converter stations at either end of the subsea cable
  • Contract signing is a significant milestone for the project as it progresses towards the delivery phase
  • EGL2 will be the longest HVDC cable in the UK and the UK’s single largest electricity transmission project ever, providing enough electricity to power two million UK homes.

EGL2, a joint venture between SSEN Transmission and National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET), has reached another milestone in the development of a new subsea electricity superhighway after sealing contracts this week with specialist HVDC cable supplier, Prysmian, and with Hitachi Energy and BAM for the supply of converter stations at either end of the project.

EGL2 will see the creation of a 525kV, 2GW HVDC subsea transmission cable from Peterhead in Scotland to Drax in England. The longest HVDC cable in the UK and the UK’s single largest electricity transmission project ever, it will provide enough electricity to power two million UK homes.

Prysmian has confirmed it has the capability to deliver the project with its manufacturing facilities for the production of the HVDC cable and its cable laying vessels for the installation in the timescale required for EGL2 to meet its targeted energisation date in 2029, supporting the timely delivery of this project and mitigating risks associated with global constraints in the HVDC supply chain.

Hitachi Energy is partnering with BAM to provide the engineering works and technology for the HVDC converter stations which form the terminals for the HVDC cable and convert direct current to the alternating current used in the onshore transmission network. This latest milestone is another significant step as the project moves towards delivery and, following final approval from Ofgem, work is expected to commence later this year, with a targeted operational date of 2029.

The subsea HVDC cable system is approximately 436km in length with new converter stations at either end to connect it into the existing transmission network infrastructure. HVDC technology provides the most efficient and reliable means of transmitting large amounts of power over long distances subsea. 

Part of a significant amount of new network infrastructure required for the transition to net zero, ELG2 will play a critical role in supporting the UK’s future security of supply, reducing dependence and price exposure to volatile global wholesale gas markets. Find out more about this ground-breaking project by visiting the newly launched dedicated EGL2 website, www.easterngreenlink2.co.uk

Speaking as the contracts were signed, SSEN Transmission’s Ricky Saez, the EGL2 Project Director, said: “Getting the contract signed with Hitachi Energy and BAM for delivery of the convertor stations is another big step in delivering EGL2. The convertor stations at either end of the cable will play a crucial role in making the power transported by this HVDC link onto the onshore transmission network quicker. 

"By signing up today Hitachi Energy and BAM – who have a great track record in delivering infrastructure like this – will allow that technology to improve the network and flow of greener energy. Likewise signing the cable contract with Prysmian is a hugely important step too, particularly given global supply chain constraints in HVDC cabling – the cable being the crucial link between both converter. This is a fantastic moment for the EGL2 project.”

Neil Lyons, Project Director for National Grid said: “Signing contracts with Hitachi Energy, BAM and Prysmian marks another important milestone for the EGL2 project and our supply chain as we begin to deliver the largest electricity transmission project in the UK. We look forward to working with them closely as this vital new network infrastructure progresses.”

Hakan Ozmen, EVP Transmission BU, Prysmian, said: “We are very proud to have the opportunity to play our role in the development of such a strategic infrastructure for UK, by making available our state-of-the-art cable technology. Once completed, the electrical ‘superhighway’ cable link will unlock the rich renewable energy capacity of Scotland and significantly increase the UK’s capacity to deliver clean energy for around two million homes in the UK.”

Niklas Persson, Managing Director at Hitachi Energy’s Grid Integration business, said: “The UK’s Net Zero Strategy has ambitious targets which will require vast amounts of new renewable generation. Electricity will be the backbone of the entire energy system. Our pioneering HVDC technology will ensure that this electricity will reliably and efficiently get where it’s needed most.”

BAM Nuttall Executive Director, Huw Jones, said: “We are pleased that BAM has been chosen by SSEN Transmission and National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET), to deliver another important milestone of this nationally significant infrastructure project. The work we are undertaking is perfectly aligned with BAM’s own commitment to deliver a sustainable tomorrow and we are delighted to play a key role in supporting UK’s transition to a low carbon economy that will safeguard our energy supply for the future.”