Shunt Reactor Project
Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) is installing three shunt reactors to the Vermont 345kV transmission system, to control high-voltage during low demand situations and to improve the stability and efficiency of the energy transmission.
Since 2005, VELCO has made significant improvements to the Vermont 345kV transmission system as part of the Northwest Reliability Project and the Southern Loop Project. VELCO identified a need in the 2009 Vermont Long-Range Transmission Plan to add additional equipment to the system to control situations of high voltage. This equipment is called shunt reactors.
The Project will increase the system operator's ability to control high voltages at time when demand is low, as well as situations of equipment failure and system generator outages. This will improve the system's capability to meet present and forecasted demand during all conditions.
The proposed project will install the following components within the Vernon, Coolidge and New Haven substations:
- Coolidge substation:
- Two variable shunt reactors
- 345kV breaker and disconnect
- New Haven substation:
- Replace existing fixed shunt reactor with a new variable shunt reactor
- 345kV breaker
- Vernon substation:
- One fixed shunt reactor, to be extracted from the New Haven substation
- two 345kV breaker and disconnect
See our glossary of electrical terms for definitions of these components.
We are in the process of assessing the Project's visual impact.
- Coolidge substation: The project will require site work that expands the existing substation fence approximately 60 feet to the north and to the south. The installation of the additional equipment will not be any taller than the existing structures. VELCO will assess the screening methods provided by the Southern Loop Project and may add mitigation screening if there is a visual concern.
- New Haven substation: There will not be a visual impact since VELCO will install the new substation equipment within the existing fence line, the new reactor is replacing the existing reactor, this equipment will be no taller than existing structures, and the Northwest Reliability project has provided the necessary screening.
- Vernon substation: VELCO does not expect any visual impacts because it will install the new substation equipment within the existing fence line, this equipment will be no taller than existing structures, and the Southern Loop project will provide the necessary screening.
We are in the process of assessing the Project's noise impacts.
- Coolidge substation: The shunt reactor that VELCO plans to install to the north will be closer to a residence than previous substation expansions. VELCO will conduct noise studies before and after the Project and will mitigate appropriately if there is a noise impact on the residence.
- New Haven substation: VELCO expects the Project to decrease the noise at the substation. The new reactor noise specifications are lower than the actual noise levels of the existing reactor. VELCO will conduct noise studies before and after the Project to assess the impact.
- Vernon substation: VELCO expects that the Project will not have a significant noise impact. VELCO will conduct noise studies before and after the Project to assess the impact.
Since the land within and immediately around the substations has been assessed as part of recent substation projects, and no significant natural resources were identified in the Project area, VELCO does not expect any undue adverse environmental impacts.
We plan to commence construction immediately after receipt of Vermont Public Service Board approval and to complete the Project before the summer of 2012. Work will begin first at Coolidge. After the two Coolidge reactors are commissioned, VELCO will move the existing ractor at New Haven to Vernon.