Transpower to undertake major HVDC outages in early 2020

22 December 2019

Transpower will undertake a lengthy programme of work on the High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) network from early January, to improve the resilience and security of an essential component of the national grid.

The HVDC is the vital link that allows South Island’s hydro electricity to supply the North Island, and the North Island to send power to the South Island when water levels are low.

The 13-week programme of activity will enable major work to be done to rewire parts of the HVDC lines and replace the control system equipment at Benmore and Haywards that converts high-voltage AC to DC, and back again at the other end.

Planning for this work has been underway since 2017 and had been timed to coincide with warmer weather when demand was lowest, GM Grid Services Mark Ryall said.

“The outages will see limits on the transfer of power northwards from the South Island power stations for use in North Island during this period.”

“Transpower as New Zealand’s power system operator does not expect the outages will affect supply to households and businesses.”

The works include replacing aging transmission lines in Wellington’s Churton Park area and updating control system equipment at our Benmore and Haywards converter stations for Pole 2, as well as some routine maintenance.

“We have been working closely with industry to keep them up-to-date with the work we are doing.” Mr Ryall said. “We would like to thank them for their support as we gear up to get this critical work underway.”

The work will start on January 7 and is scheduled to finish on April 9. More details can be found on Transpower’s website here.

For more information, please contact:

Patrick O’Meara Senior Corporate Communications Advisor on 04 590 8626 or 027 491 6341