A technical team from Transgrid is spending nine days visiting energy companies and utilities in the US and Canada, searching for the latest technologies and methods to incorporate into the New South Wales transmission network. 

Transgrid Executive General Manager of Major Projects, Gordon Taylor, said that Transgrid is building the grid of the future to enable Australia’s clean energy transition.

“If we want to be a global leader in renewable energy it requires us to embrace innovation and ideas from around the world,” Mr Taylor said. 

“We are delivering the critical infrastructure and priority projects identified by the Federal and New South Wales Governments and that’s why we are embracing innovative technology and methods in building transmission infrastructure from countries well advanced in the renewable energy transformation. 

“Our fact-finding mission to the US and Canada is providing some valuable learnings to ensure we are working smarter to bring cleaner, cheaper and more reliable energy to millions of Australians.” 

The mission, which also includes a major projects team from Queensland’s Powerlink, comprises: 

  • A tour of the TS Conductor manufacturing facility in California to understand the current and future capabilities of High Temperature Low Sag (HTLS) conductors 
  • A visit to Canadian electric utility BC Hydro at Vancouver to identify methods to allow faster construction and better workforce utilisation when building 500kV transmission lines, including using sky cranes for tower installation in difficult terrain and drones for stringing 
  • A live demonstration at the DFI Piling test facility at Edmonton to understand the potential benefits of various piling solutions in terms of capacity and construction speed 
  • Attending the Utility Expo 2023 in Kentucky to meet other utilities and suppliers to identify new products and technology applicable to the Australian industry and new approaches to transmission infrastructure construction 
  • A presentation of lessons learned in 500kV transmission line construction at the Energy Environmental Group in Arizona to identify methods to allow faster construction and better workforce utilisation
  • A tour of the RS Technologies manufacturing facility in Utah to understand the current and future capabilities of composite and modular structures and tower dressings
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