Power Grid

27 May 2024

Construction Begins on Neuconnect's German Connection

27 May 2024  by powerengineeringint   

Image courtesy NeuConnect

NeuConnect, the first direct power link between Germany and Great Britain, has marked the start of major construction work in Germany.

For the connector, new converter stations will be built in Wilhelmshaven in northern Germany and on the Isle of Grain in England, connected by 725km of land and subsea cables to form an ‘invisible energy highway’.

The announcement sees NeuConnect’s contractors Siemens Energy and Prysmian starting construction of the converter station and cabling works in Wilhelmshaven.

Dr Robert Habeck, German vice-chancellor and federal minister for economic affairs and climate protection, said in a release: “The energy transition will succeed if we work together in Europe. The first German-British interconnector will help to balance out fluctuations in the output of renewable energies, increase flexibility on the electricity markets and thus maintain system stability in both countries at the highest level.”

Led by global investors Meridiam, Allianz Capital Partners (on behalf of the Allianz companies), Kansai Electric Power and TEPCO, NeuConnect is a privately financed €2.8 billion ($3 billion) project that will connect two of Europe’s largest energy markets for the first time.

The new link will allow up to 1.4GW of electricity to flow in either direction, enough to power up to 1.5 million homes over the life of the project, helping to boost energy security and resilience in the UK and Germany.

Image courtesy NeuConnect

Added UK minister of state for trade policy Greg Hands: “Interconnectors can play a vital role in strengthening our energy security.

“NeuConnect’s £2.4 billion project will connect the UK and Germany – two of Europe’s largest energy markets – for the first time, delivering electricity for millions of homes and families across the North Sea. Investment like this, which will deliver crucial new infrastructure, shows our close relationship with Germany is going from strength to strength.”

Construction work at NeuConnect’s UK site on the Isle of Grain began last year, with the start of foundation works on the UK converter station starting earlier this month.

With major construction also now underway in Germany, NeuConnect remains firmly on track and is expected to be operational by 2028.

Said NeuConnect chair Julia Prescot: “Germany and the UK share a common goal of delivering a greener, more secure energy system for the future, so NeuConnect will make a vital contribution, uniting our net zero ambitions and strengthening the economic links between both countries.

“As we mark a new chapter with the start of major construction, we are particularly grateful to the German and British Governments for their continued support as this vital new energy link begins to take shape.”


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