VNI upgrade passes the half way mark, as civil works advance.

20 July 2021

TransGrid’s Victoria-NSW Interconnector (VNI) upgrade project, which will increase transfer capacity into NSW from Victoria by 170 megawatts at times of high demand, is now over 55 per cent complete and remains on track for completion this year.

Executive Manager of Works Delivery Craig Stallan said the bulk of civil works is completed and the first stage of electrical works of the VNI upgrade project will commence next month, with the balance of civil works to be finished in August.

“We are very pleased with the progress we are making on this major project that will help lower energy costs across the National Energy Market,” said Mr Stallan.

“The VNI upgrade will help reduce electricity bills through more efficient sharing of generation resources between the states. It will also enable more energy from renewable sources to enter the grid.”

The project is to upgrade TransGrid’s Stockdill Substation in Holt, ACT, using a technology called Smart Wires, which redirects the electricity flows to less congested lines, when the system detects areas of congestion in the network.

The use of Smart Wires power flow controller technology on a 330kV network enables additional power to be transmitted efficiently, avoiding the need to upgrade more than 100 kilometres of transmission lines through the Snowy Mountains region.

“The use of Smart Wires, and existing transmission lines, results in minimal impact on the community or neighbouring landowners,” Mr Stallan said.

More than 100 local people have been employed during the project, with over 60 people from the ACT and 30 from the Goulburn area, including electricians, carpenters, form workers, traffic controllers and maintenance workers.

The VNI Upgrade project was the preferred option identified to increase transfer capacity between NSW and Victoria in the 2020 Project Assessment Conclusion Report (PACR) by the Australian Market Energy Operator (AMEO) and TransGrid. The upgrade yields the highest net market benefits of all options assessed through the RIT-T process.

Learn more about VNI.

Media enquiries:
Wendy Searle 0400 924974