National Grid has turned on its £1.7 billion Viking subsea power link to Denmark, claiming the 475 miles of the 1.4GW project makes it the world’s longest.

Viking extends between Bicker Fen substation in Lincolnshire and Revsing in southern Jutland, on Denmark’s mainland.  It will initially operate at 0.8GW, with transmission ramped over coming months to the full 1.4GW rating. That’s enough, says NG, to meet the power needs of up to 2.5 million UK homes.

A joint venture with Denmark’s grid system operator Energinet, Viking is National Grid’s sixth interconnector.  Construction began in 2019, and has clocked up more than four million working hours thus far.  The link’s first power flowed on 21 December.

NG and ministers say Viking enables Britain to import cheaper, lower carbon Danish power when needed, increasing Britain’s energy security, and potentially cutting costs for UK consumers.

In its first year of operation Viking Link is expected to save approximately 600,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, equivalent to taking 280,000 cars off UK roads.

National Grid’s interconnectors are run by its National Grid Ventures offshoot. NGV operates outside the parent’s core regulated businesses in Britain and America, developing energy projects, technologies and partnerships to accelerate the development of Britain’s clean energy links.

NGV president Katie Jackson said: “This record-breaking new link is a fantastic example of engineering and collaboration with Energinet.

“As we deploy more wind power to meet climate and energy security targets, connections to our neighbouring countries will play a vital role increasing security of supply and reducing prices for consumers.

Principal contractor Siemens Energy built the converter station in the UK, stepping up current for marine transmission. The German engineers designed, installed and commissioned additional switchgear on both sides.

Prysmian made Viking’s HVDC offshore cable, laying it too in a seabed trench with its custom-made vessel the Leonardo Da Vinci.

Engineers Balfour Beatty laid the onshore stretches cable in Britain. These comprises 118 sections, stretching for 67km between Bicker Fen and Sutton-on-Sea.

Rebecca Sedler, managing director of National Grid Interconnectors, hailed the switch on.

“Viking Link is an achievement for both Denmark and the UK” she said, “and consumers in both countries will benefit from this infrastructure for many years to come.  Viking highlights National Grid’s dedication to the UK’s clean energy transition.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here