Loch Buidhe substation powers up

Half of a new substation is now live and working as part of Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) network in the north of Scotland.

Loch Buidhe substation powers up

The company has successfully energised the 132kV air-insulated equipment at Loch Buidhe substation as part of the £1.1billion Caithness-Moray project.

SSEN has been building the new 132/275kV Loch Buidhe substation, near Bonar Bridge, since 2014. The first half was energised last week with the 275kV element now in its final stages and on schedule to be energised at the beginning of next year.

Lead project manager Daryn Lucas said: “We have just energised the 132kV part of the substation which is essentially half of the substation. It is now live and working as part of our network in the north of Scotland. It’s a major milestone for the project and is one of the first parts of Caithness-Moray to be energised along with Thurso South substation.

“The works on site started in October 2014 when we upgraded the public road from Bonar Bridge, which is about 7km of single-access track that needed to be widened and upgraded so we could take the weight of our transformers coming in and also the volume of timber going out.

“We have managed to tuck away a substation of this size away from view and most people around here. It forms an important part of the infrastructure as part of Scotland.”

The site recently received a silver award at the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) Awards as a result of several initiatives deployed by the project team. These have included the installation of electric vehicle charging points, gritting the local public road, supporting STEM projects within local schools and hosting nature walks with the local community.


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