A guyed tower rises on EnergyConnect

The first of 1,500 steel towers has been installed as part of EnergyConnect, to enable the sharing of electricity between New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria. 

Earthworks have also been completed at the Buronga substation expansion in Victoria.

The $1.8 billion EnergyConnect project will integrate renewable energy into the grid and help Australia achieve its emissions reduction targets. 

Construction crews erected the first guyed towers using a 230t crane at Buronga, near  Mildura. Unlike conventional self-supporting towers, which stand on four legs, guyed towers comprise a central mast held in place by four steel cables. 

Transgrid CEO, Brett Redman, said, “We are getting on with the job of delivering the critical infrastructure needed to provide Australian households and businesses with cheaper, more reliable and sustainable energy. 

“The raising of our first transmission towers on EnergyConnect is yet another significant milestone in building the energy superhighway to accelerate the nation’s clean energy future. 

“Importantly, this type of tower requires about 15 per cent less steel and 25 per cent less concrete in construction, achieving a reduced carbon footprint. It is just one of the ways Transgrid is delivering more sustainable outcomes on our transmission projects as we lead the transition to a clean energy future.” 

Meanwhile, works are well underway on the expansion of Transgrid’s Buronga substation, which will become the main hub for energy sharing between the three states. Earthworks on the substation bench are now complete, with concrete foundations being poured to hold the synchronous condensers and transformers at the heart of the facility.  

“The 16ha  expansion of the Buronga substation is the equivalent of 20 football fields and, once operational, it will be one of the largest and most complex substations in the Southern Hemisphere,” Mr Redman said. 

Following the establishment of a 30ha worker accommodation camp and laydown with office facilities at Buronga, construction is also progressing on another two camps on Renmark Road, west of the South Australia border, and near Lockhart, at the eastern end of the project alignment.  

Ultimately, six workforce camps will be established along the EnergyConnect alignment, providing the equivalent of 490,000 nights of accommodation during the project. The camps will relieve pressure on limited housing and accommodation in local communities, reduce travel to construction sites, and ensure the health and wellbeing of workers with high-quality living amenities including gyms and recreation rooms. 

Featured image: A guyed tower rises on EnergyConnect. Image provided by EnergyConnect.

Assistant Editor, Utility magazine

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