Red Eléctrica de España has completed the replacement of eight towers of the 220-kilovolt (kV) Candelaria-Granadilla line, an action that is part of the Grid Asset Improvement (MAR) project. A project the Company has been carrying out following the acquisition of the assets on the islands in 2010 in order to integrate and improve the facilities of the Canary Islands transmission grid to bring them up to the quality standards of all its infrastructure on the Spanish peninsula.
With an investment of 987,000 euros, the work carried out has solved the corrosion and oxidation problems the towers of this line were suffering from due to the harsh environmental conditions.
The Candelaria-Granadilla double-circuit line joins the two electricity power generating stations in Tenerife and is the only 220 kV axis on the island, which is why it is a critical infrastructure for the electricity supply, given also the poor grid meshing on the island. For this reason, the adaptation and replacement of towers has had to be performed with the line in service, being the first time ever in the Canary Islands this type of work has been carried out on a 220 kV line which was live while the towers were replaced.
Adding to the complexity of the type of work performed was the fact that the line runs through an area with intense winds and a complicated orography, which meant it was necessary to involve a large team of highly qualified professionals and required the use of high-capacity mechanical means, such as three high tonnage boom cranes and two tractor heads.
The Company has invested 114.2 million euros in Tenerife since 2011 as part of the MAR project and a specific maintenance plan for the infrastructure of the Canary Islands. The adaptation and maintenance of these facilities has helped achieve a greater level of security and continuity of the electricity supply and a significant reduction in the average interruption times, reaching a grid availability index of 98.12% in 2017.
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