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A new transformer needed for Dutch-Belgian power capacity upgrade

6/16/2015 ICIS, Elia

 Belgium: A capacity upgrade to increase the amount of Dutch electricity that can flow to Belgium from 3.5 GW to 4.5 GW will not be completed before winter, a spokeswoman from Belgian transmission system operator Elia has said.

The work is the first phase of the Brabo project, upgrading an existing 150 kV line between Belgium’s Zandvliet and Doel to a 380 kV line, and installing an additional phase-shifting transformer in Zandvliet on the border with the Netherlands.

“We need to build a transformer on the Doel site and rebuild an existing line to change it to an import line. Because it is a nuclear site, the schedule needs to take into account the safety concerns demanded by operator Electrabel and we cannot ignore that,” the spokewoman said.

Belgium’s power supply has been curtailed since March 2014 due to prolonged outages of the 1 GW nuclear reactors Doel 3 and Tihange 2. The Belgian grid was structurally dependent on imports last winter, with supply almost doubling year on year, according to Elia’s 2014 annual report.

Source: ICIS, Elia