After sitting dormant for nearly two decades, the site of an uncompleted twin nuclear power plant in Washington has been given a new purpose — home to a reenergized commercial and industrial park, which features a new substation.
The Satsop Development Park is a far cry from the original intent of the site, which was to house a 2600-MW nuclear power plant, an idea conceived in the early 1970s. Construction ceased in 1982 and the $3.8 billion investment at Satsop sat dormant until 1999.
Located in Elma, about 25 miles (40 km) west of Olympia, the 230/12.47-kV Satsop Park Substation is the first 230-kV substation for Public Utility District (PUD) No. 1 of Grays Harbor County. It features a single section-alized bus configuration with two line bays and two transformer bays. A sheltered-isle switchgear enclosure, which houses the substation protection and controls, as well as six metal-clad 15-kV circuit breakers, is fabricated from marine-grade aluminum to provide a maintenance-free exterior.
Grays Harbor PUD, which provides electrical service at the business park, retained the services of consulting and engineering firm R.W. Beck Inc. to assist in the planning and engineering of $8 million in improvements to the park's electrical system infrastructure. With the completion of the substation, the Satsop Development Park is now considered one of the state's most reliable electric sites with its connection to a major regional transmission corridor and switchyard for four 230-kV lines, a 500-kV line, and 600 MW of gas-turbine generation under construction.
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