August 16, 2013 18:30
FGC UES to retest equipment for importing electricity from Finland in Sept
MOSCOW. Aug 16 (Interfax) - OJSC Federal Grid Company UES (RTS: FEES) will retest equipment for transmitting electricity from Finland to Russia at the beginning of September, the company's press service told Interfax.
FGC UES first tested a complete rectifier-transformer device in reverse at the 400-kV Vyborg substation in 2010. This was part of a project to convert one of four transformers at the Vyborg substation to reverse mode. As a result of these tests, it was proven that the equipment can work in reverse and be used to import electricity from Finland. By making equipment at the Vyborg substation operate in reverse, it will be possible to transfer electricity from Finland with installed capacity of up to 350 megawatts (MW).
FGC UES declined to comment further.
Russian energy company Inter RAO UES (RTS: IRAO) will act as an operator for the import of electricity from Finland. A company spokesman told Interfax that reverse supplies are being sent to Russia because of their economic expediency. In Finland, the cost of electricity depends on the water level in the country's rivers, which influences power generation at hydro-electric power plants. Inter RAO does not rule out that it could start importing power from Finland next year. Russia is currently putting together the regulatory framework needed for these supplies.
Finland is one of the key recipients of Russian electricity. In the first half of 2013, Inter RAO UES boosted exports to Finland by 1% to 2.345 billion kWh.
In total, the company has increased exports from Russia by 2% to 9.9 billion kWh. Exports to Belarus jumped 12% and reached 2.2 billion kWh, whereas supplies to Lithuania dropped 20% to 1.98 billion kWh. Exports to China have nearly doubled to 1.9 billion kWh.
FGC UES and Finnish grid company Fingrid decided on the need to convert the Russia-Finland power transmission line into reverse mode back in December 2007.
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