The two 30MVA 132/11kV grid transformers at St Fergus Gas Station substation form an important part of the SHE-Transmission system. The existing Transformers were manufactured in 1975, now 43 years old. Design life of the transformers is 40 years; hence these units are past their intended design life expectancy.
In addition to age related concerns, the extreme coastal environment seen at St Fergus has also had an effect on the plant’s deterioration. A condition-based assessment has been carried out, which found the transformers to be in poor external condition with corrosion present.
Due to changes in specifications, it is not possible to install the replacement transformers in the same location as those currently in use, this is mainly due to the transformers now having to be housed inside a building given their location within 2Km of the north east coast and increased fire safety requirements
A site selection report was subsequently commissioned to identify the most suitable option based on operational, technical, economic and environmental assessments. Based on the information detailed in the report, we propose to locate the new 132/11kV St Fergus Gas substation to the west of St Fergus Gas Station and the adjacent A90.
Transformers allow us to increase and decrease the voltage of electricity when required, this allows delivery of electricity across the transmission network to be much more manageable and efficient.
Transformers vary in size, and in some cases, can require specialist haulage equipment to transport them to site. Our Community Liaison Team will work alongside all local communities that may be affected by the delivery of a Transformer to ensure that any disruption is kept to a minimum.
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Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks is the trading name of Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution Limited, Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission plc, Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc and Southern Electric Power Distribution plc.
Investments in projects are made by SHE Transmission plc. Electricity transmission companies are authorised to recover the costs of such investments through 'use of system' charges which are levied by National Grid Electricity Transmission plc on generators and suppliers of electricity. Suppliers recover their costs from all electricity customers. In order to protect the interests of customers, the transmission companies have to demonstrate to the energy regulator, Ofgem (Office for Gas and Electricity Markets) that proposed investments are necessary, are efficient and are economical so that the charges which are ultimately levied on all electricity customers are justified.
This means SHE Transmission is subject to a funding mechanism established by Parliament and regulated by Ofgem. Cross subsidies between different businesses in the SSE group is not permitted.
It’s the highest voltage electricity network in the UK – the ‘motorway network’ of the energy world. It transmits large quantities of electricity over long distances via wires carried on a system of mainly metal towers (pylons) and large substations. Transmission voltages in Scotland are 132kV, 275kV and 400kV. Larger generation schemes usually connect to the Transmission system.
The lower voltage parts of the system are called distribution networks. In Scotland, these local networks operate below 132kV whereas in England the distribution network includes 132kV.
The Scottish Ministers are responsible for determination of applications submitted under Section 37 of the Electricity Act 1989. Both statutory consultees and members of the public have the right to submit their representations on the application. All representations will be considered by Scottish Ministers in their determination of the application.
The Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), as the regulator, has to approve all investment so project proposals are developed under license conditions.
Preferred route corridors chosen will comply with revised ‘Holford Rules’ which are the recognised industry approach to routeing overhead lines amended to reflect Scottish circumstances.
SHE Transmission are regulated by the Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), the regulator responsible for representing consumers' interests. Electricity consumer interests are therefore one of our key drivers and this is enshrined in our statutory duties under the Electricity Act.
In particular we have a statutory duty to develop, maintain and operate an efficient, economic and co-ordinated transmission system. Since the costs of these projects will ultimately be paid for by electricity consumers, we have a responsibility to take cost into account with due weighting in a comparison against other important factors.
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