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Steel frames help harness renewable energy

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Helping to deliver more renewable power to National Grid customers, Adey Steel has supplied the steelwork for a series of SmartValve structures that use transformational technology to remove bottlenecks, and thereby unlock network capacity.

According to National Grid, as renewables connect to the network, power flows change and circuits become unequally loaded, and ultimately the entire network is unable to absorb any more power.

Adey Steel said it partnered with leading experts in the energy sector to deliver SmartValve structures, that include steel frames and bases for insulators, to the National Grid substation network. The structures were complemented by a series of gantries and structures to support the transmission of power around each site.

The project required 300t of steel for the SmartValve structures and a further 200t of steelwork for gantries and supports.

This new design and technology is being installed on circuits at three substations in the north of England, which were identified as power-flow bottlenecks. The sites are Harker in Carlisle, Penwortham in Preston, and Saltholme in Stockton-on-Tees.

David Wright, Chief Engineer for National Grid, said: “Harnessing the potential of new innovative technologies to enhance benefits for customers and consumers is at the heart of everything we do. I’m proud to see we are leading the way in pioneering transformational and innovative engineering to achieve wide-scale decarbonisation and overcome bottlenecks that are preventing maximum use of our networks.”

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