HVDC Pole 2 Converter Transformer Refurbishment Project

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converter transformers

What we're doing

We need to continually operate, maintain and develop New Zealand's transmission network – the National Grid – to ensure we meet the ongoing electricity needs of New Zealanders.

A critical part of New Zealand's power system is our HVDC inter-island link made up of Pole 2 and Pole 3.  We are undertaking a project to refurbish the six HVDC Pole 2 transformers (three each at Benmore and Haywards).

Why we're doing it

The HVDC is a critical part of New Zealand's electricity infrastructure.  All our recent investigations involving the HVDC link have shown a continuing need for HVDC capacity between the North and South Island until at least 2060.  The Pole 2 converter transformers that convert the output voltage of the HVDC converter equipment to match that of our 220 kV grid backbone for Pole 2 have now been in service for 30 years.  While their key componentry will last many years more, they are in need of a mid-life refurbishment.

More information

We initially consulted on the need for Pole 2 transformer refurbishment and life extension work in our Regulatory Control Period 3 (RCP3) submission in 2018.  We also undertook focused engagement with both Meridian and Contact on timing of the works, given their reliance on the HVDC link and the impact of any outages on their operations.  To ensure our investigation is kept up to date, we have consulted again on the options and preferred solution to ensure we have the most up to date information in order to confirm an investment path.  Documents relating to that consultation can be found below.