High-voltage testing success

Another milestone

In the latest milestone for the project to replace 8.8km of overhead line with underground cables in the Dorset AONB, we have successfully completed high-voltage (HV) testing of one of the two circuits we have buried underground.

Testing the new underground cables is a crucial part of this project.  Following all the hard work that’s gone on already – digging trenches, laying ducting and jointing the cables – the next step is to make sure that it works.

Cables are laid in 1km sections at a time due to the sheer size and weight of the cable itself – they cannot be safely transported on our roads if they are any bigger.

With 108km of cables laid in total, the first of the two 54km circuits has been commissioned.

As with so many things on site, our activities were weather dependent.  After a few days of spring rain putting the commissioning team on stand-by, the skies thankfully cleared so we could complete the testing on schedule.

With all the technical planning and expertise involved in this project it was no surprise but a great relief to see everything working as it should. It’s a tremendous achievement by all those involved in this project.

With this confirmation that one circuit is ready to go live, we will soon be HV testing the second circuit, as well as turning our attention towards removing the existing overhead line that hangs between the pylons. And the step after that? Permanently removing the 22 pylons from the landscape and returning it to its natural beauty.

Setting up for HV testing