The Swedish TSO Svenska kraftnät has informed the Nordic power exchange Nord Pool Spot AS that the planned commissioning of The SouthWest Link is to be postponed from the first quarter of 2015 to the end of the third quarter of 2015. The reason is that Alstom Grid announced a one year delay in delivering the HVDC converter stations ordered by Svenska kraftnät.
This summer, it was revealed that the project is associated with great technical challenges that Alstom need more time to resolve. Therefore, in order to facilitate the assignment to Alstom, Svenska kraftnät has accepted delivery in two phases. This means that one link shall be in operation by Sept. 15 2015 and that both links will be part of the Swedish electrical transmission system by January 31st, 2016.
“We assumed that Alstom would be able to supply the converter stations, the heart of The SouthWest Link, in agreed upon time. But we have had to accept that this is not the case. It inevitably leads to a delay in the commissioning of The SouthWest Link,” says Svenska kraftnät's CEO, Mikael Odenberg.
“The delay will not necessarily have effect on the price of electricity in SE4 but it is crucial that Alstom solves all technical difficulties so that The SouthWest Link can deliver full capacity before the NordBalt connection to Lithuania is to be commissioned,” says Odenberg.
The northern part of The SouthWest Link – a AC connection between Hallsberg and Barkeryd – is not affected by Alstom's delivery problems, and will be operational as planned on February 25, 2015.