The 400-kV Pasikurowice-Wroclaw transmission line. Courtesy of Dawid Sieniuc, Agencja Promocji Inwestycji Sp.z.o.o.

Poland Readies the Grid

July 28, 2014
The Polish transmission system is reinforced in preparation for hosting the European 2012 football championship.  

In 2007, Poland and Ukraine were selected to host the 2012 Union of European Football Association (UEFA) European football championship. To ensure failure-free power supply from the transmission system and distribution network, PSE S.A., the transmission system operator (TSO), embarked on a series of major projects in the Polish host cities.

Applications were submitted to construct 400-kV overhead line circuits and substations for the Wroclaw and Poznan areas of the country. Legislation was introduced to ensure the planning applications submitted by PSE for the construction of the new 400-kV circuits were processed with minimal delay. This effectively gave the TSO approval to construct a series of major 400-kV projects.

Recognizing the importance of these projects, PSE spared no effort to ensure all projects were implemented in accordance with the highest applicable investment, in compliance with legal and environmental standards and, most importantly, by the deadline. The TSO’s tasks included ensuring the reliability of electricity supply to all regions of Poland by creating a modern power supply infrastructure.

The 400/110-kV Wroclaw substation. Courtesy of ZWSE Rzeszow Sp. z o.o.

400/110-kV Pasikurowice–Wroclaw Overhead Line

The group of investment projects aimed at extending the power supply system in the Wroclaw area included construction of a 400/110-kV Pasikurowice-Wroclaw line. This project, which used a 400/110-kV line to connect the Pasikurowice substation with the 400/110-kV Wroclaw substation, enhanced the reliability of power supply for the Wroclaw area and improved voltage conditions in the southwestern part of the Polish power supply system.

This was a pioneering project in Poland as it was the first 400-kV overhead line for which PSE used tubular pole structures within most substations. The poles were individually designed, including their foundations, for each substation to meet international standards requirements. To minimize the impact of the line through forested areas, the so-called over-forest line was routed over the existing tree stands to avoid tree clearance. This required using 108-m (354-ft)-tall lattice towers in locations where the line passes over a designated natural habitat with 1-km (3,281-ft) spans. Thus, the line route directed through the Odrzanski broad-leaved forest and broad-leaved forests in the Odra Valley was moved outside forest and tree-covered areas so as to avoid any interference with protected species habitats.

This overhead line was constructed by the consortium of PBE ELBUD Warszawa Sp. z o.o. and PBE ELBUD Katowice Sp. z o.o.

The 400/110-kV Swiebodzice-Wroclaw transmission line. Courtesy of ZWSE Rzeszow Sp. z o.o.

400/110-kV Wroclaw Substation

The Wroclaw substation, located in the Maluszow, Kobierzyce, commune, was constructed a considerable distance from inhabited areas. It reinforces the power supply for the Wroclaw region as it is the first 400-kV substation on the southern side of Wroclaw. This substation was constructed from February 2008 to December 2011 and included of a 400-kV overhead switching station with tubular bus bars. The substation is equipped with two 400/110-kV, 330-MVA autotransformers and two 110-kV bays. The remainder of the substation infrastructure is designed for maintenance-free operation.

The 400/110-kV Pasikurowice-Wroclaw transmission line combined with this substation has improved the Lower Silesia region’s energy security and extended the possibility of exporting and transmitting energy to Western Europe. Furthermore, it also mitigates the risk of not meeting the contractual power supply obligations for new industrial customers located in the Lower Silesia region and enhancing the reliability of supplying the regional 110-kV distribution line.

The Wroclaw substation was constructed by ZWSE Rzeszow Sp. z o.o.

The map offers an extensive overview of the Polish power system.

400/110-kV Swiebodzice-Wroclaw Transmission Line

The southern side of the region was supplied only by the 220-kV Swiebodzice-Klecina line, which was built at the end of the 1960s. This single-track line that supplied power from the Turow power plant was no longer able to transmit sufficient power to the southern districts of Wroclaw and the intensively developing communes located near Wroclaw. Thus, it was not able to provide sufficient amounts of power to the sports facilities in the southern and southwestern parts of the city that were being prepared for EURO 2012.

Previously, relatively frequent failures occurred on the 220-kV Swiebodzice–Klecina line, causing continuity of supply problems. Therefore, construction of the new 400-kV Swiebodzice-Wroclaw power line was an urgent project.

The overhead Swiebodzice-Wroclaw line is routed in close proximity to the existing 220-kV Swiebodzice-Klecina line. A major section of the line is routed through agricultural areas, away from existing residential buildings and forested areas located between Krysztalowice and Olbrachtowice.

The Swiebodzice-Wroclaw transmission line was constructed on lattice towers with a 3 × 350-sq mm (3 × 0.54-sq inch) conductor bundle. Eventually, the existing 40-year-old 220-kV Swiebodzice-Klecina transmission line will be demolished.

The new line was constructed by a consortium including ZWSE Rzeszow Sp. z o.o., BE SELPOL S.A., ELFEKO S.A. and PILE ELBUD Krakow Sp. z o.o.

400/220/110-kV Swiebodzice Substation

The existing 220/110-kV Swiebodzice substation was commissioned more than 30 years ago and is one of the few substations in southwestern Poland. It is located in the Swidnica commune, within Mokrzeszow boundaries, by the western boundary of the town of Swiebodzice.

The Swiebodzice substation was extended with a 400-kV switching station to connect it with the 400-kV line from the Wroclaw substation and taking into account the planned modernization and uprating to 400 kV of the lines routed from the Mikulowa, Zabkowice and Boguszow substations, which currently operate at 220 kV. The scope of the extension works included construction of a new switching station and modernization of the currently operating 220-kV switching station.

The area occupied by the new 400-kV switching station is approximately 7.5 hectares (18.5 acres). To provide the area required for the switching station, a section of the existing 220-kV line routed toward Zabkowice was replaced by underground cable.

The 400/220/110-kV Swiebodzice substation was constructed by PBE ELBUD Warszawa Sp. z o.o.

The 400-kV Ostrow-Plewiska transmission line. Courtesy of PSE S.A.

400-kV Ostrow–Plewiska Transmission Line

The Ostrow-Plewiska transmission line is 145 km (90 miles) long and entirely routed through the Wielkopolskie Voivodeship area, which includes 19 commune areas. The line route was subject to long-term studies so as to optimize it for minimum interference with the infrastructure of existing towns in the vicinity. The line was built in two sections: the first section, from Ostrow to Kromolice, intersects with the 220-kV Konin-Plewiska circuit; and the second section, which is 32.5 km (20.2 miles) long, consists of a dual-circuit 400-kV line and dual-voltage 220-kV and110-kV line from Kromolice to Plewiska.

As a result of the poor condition of the 220-kV line between Konin and Plewiska, which had been in service for almost 50 years, the existing 220-kV towers were replaced with structures that could support four circuits, for example, the two 220-kV circuits strung below two 400-kV circuits. This innovative solution released 260 hectares (643 acres) of valuable suburban land in the Poznan district, which is reserved as a limited-use zone. This new transmission line has made a substantial impact on limiting electromagnetic fields and minimizing the level of environmental interference.

This transmission line was constructed by BE SELPOL S.A. (Kromolice-Plewiska section) and Eltel Networks Olsztyn S.A. (Kromolice-Ostrow section).

This transmission interconnector is a strategically important part of the Polish commitment to an international agreement to connect its power system to the European Union for the Coordination of Transmission of Electricity (ENSTO-E) system. This newly constructed circuit, together with the Kromolice substation, increases the supply to the Poznan area, which has the largest generating capacity in Poland, the Belchatow and Opole power plants.

The 400-kV Kromolice-Patnow transmission line. Courtesy of Eltel Networks Olsztyyn S.A.

400-kV Kromolice–Patnow Transmission Line

The overhead double-circuit 400-kV Kromolice-Patnow transmission line is an extension of the four-circuit 400/220/110-kV Plewiska-Ostrow line. It was constructed using the right-of-way secured for the 220-kV Plewiska-Konin line built in 1958. With the new 76-km (47-mile) transmission line, it is now possible to transmit power from the Patnow Power Plant, and, in the future, from other modernized power plants. It also enhances the reliability of the national power system operation as well as power supply for the Poznan area, and improves the energy balance of the Wielkopolska region.

This transmission line also has made possible a new connection between individual circuits in the Wielkopolska region with the national power supply system. The new connections also adjust the network for power transfer, particularly in the east-west direction. Furthermore, the decision to construct this transmission line will ensure the power failures experienced during the summer and winter of 2006 and 2007 (a result of the inadequacy of the infrastructure of the Poznan transmission system) will not be repeated. The next stage of reinforcement will include connections from the Patnow switching station routed to the east and north as well as international connections, including the connections in the east of Poland.

The 400 kV Kromolice-Patnow power line was constructed during a record-breaking period of one year by the consortium of Eltel Networks Olsztyn S.A. (consortium leader), BE SELPOL S.A. Lodz and ZWSE Rzeszow Sp. z.o.o.

The 400/110-kV Kromolice substation. Courtesy of Piotr Dec, PSE Inwestycje S.A.

400/110-kV Kromolice Substation

The 400/110-kV Kromolice substation plays an important role in the national power supply system as it provides the power supply for the southeastern part of the Poznan area and the central part of the Wielkopolska region. Its construction included the transmission line connections toward Plewiska and the Rogowiec-Trebaczew line, in addition to the Patnow substation. These circuits made it possible to close a ring of Poland’s most important domestic 400-kV grid, which serves more than 50% of the country. This system has made it possible to counteract the results of major power supply failures, and its construction facilitates the development of the 110-kV distribution network to cover the foreseeable power demand.

The Kromolice substation is located in a key position in the transmission system with links to the Patnow, Turow, Belchatow, Dolna Odra and Opole power plants. With the construction of the new transmission lines, this substation will bring system security not only to the Wielkopolskie Voivodeship region but to the entire country.

The location of the substation was determined by the existing, favorable configuration of the highest-voltage transmission and distribution lines. The substation, with an area of 11.2 hectares (27.7 acres), was constructed remotely from any residential development.

The complete 400/110-kV Kromolice substation was constructed by SAG ELBUD Gdansk S.A.

A Major Achievement

These major investment projects ensured reliable power supply for the UEFA EURO 2012 tournament. PSE made a total expenditure of some PLN 1 billion (US$312 million). The projects made it possible to supply electric power to the host cities of the tournament with a guaranteed reliability of supply. PSE has shown the national power supply system was able to operate in normal conditions during the EURO 2012 tournament and is rightly proud of the goals established for the TSO were achieved.

Marek Grochowski ([email protected]) is a graduate of Warsaw University of Technology and has worked for PSE S.A. since 2009. During that time, he has gained valuable experience in project management. He supervises the management of investment projects in the west area of the Polish power system.

Marcin Laskowski ([email protected]) is a graduate of Warsaw University of Technology, has an executive MBA and is a certified project manager. He joined PSE GK in 1998 and later moved to GK PSE. Laskowski specializes in power infrastructure investments in his current position as director of the investment department at PSE S.A.

Companies mentioned:



Eltel Networks Olsztyn |

PBE ELBUD Katowice |

PBE ELBUD Warszawa |



SAG ELBUD Gdansk |

ZWSE Rzeszow |

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