Prysmian Group has been awarded a contract worth above €800 million for a new power interconnection between France and Spain. The power link will be developed for INELFE, a 50:50 joint venture between the Spanish grid operator Red Electrica and the French grid operator Réseau de Transport d’Électricité (RTE). The project falls within the European Commission’s Projects of Common Interest, as it increases power supply reliability, enables the further integration of renewable energy into electricity grids and contributes to creating a more efficient system.

The EPCI contract for Cable Link 2 of the Biscay Gulf Project comprises a total route of around 400 km of submarine and land power cables for an overall capacity of 1 GW. The submarine connection links the Basque coast (Spain) to the Médoc coast (France).

Subject to the issuance of the notice to proceed expected within May 2023, Prysmian Group will be responsible for the design, installation, testing and commissioning of two HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current) 400 kV single-core cables with XLPE insulation and fibre optic cable for telecom and monitoring purposes, to connect the Cubnezais substation (France) to the Gatika substation (Spain), covering both submarine and land section. Prysmian will also be responsible for constructing the 4 landfall sites for both the Links comprising the overall project. 400 kV HVDC extruded state-of-the-art technology chosen by INELFE for the Biscay Gulf project is a key operational milestone for Prysmian.

Submarine cables will be manufactured at Prysmian Group’s centres of excellence in Pikkala (Finland) and Arco Felice (Italy), while land cables will be produced in Gron and Montereau (France). Fibre optics cables will be manufactured in Nordenham (Germany) and Santander (Spain). Commissioning of the global project is scheduled by 2028.

Prysmian’s new breakthrough cable-laying vessel will perform marine installation operations, which is currently under construction and expected to be fully operational by Q1 2025 and will stand out for its technical performance, flexibility, and sustainability.

“We are proud to be part of this challenging project, which will be the first essentially submarine interconnection between France and Spain, contributing to increase up to 5 GW overall the exchanged energy capacity between the two countries,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP Projects BU, Prysmian Group. “This award confirms the trust and long-standing relationship between our clients — Red Eléctrica and Réseau de Transport d’Électricité — and Prysmian Group, as this is just the latest of several projects developed together in Spain and France to enhance the national power grid’s reliability and to support both countries in meeting their energy transition goals.”

Image source: Courtesy of Prysmian Group

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