Nexans has been awarded a turnkey contract worth in excess of 90 million euros by REE (Red Eléctrica de España), the operator of the Spanish power system and the owner of the power transmission grid, to create a new 115 km high-voltage (HV) submarine power link between the Islands of Mallorca and Ibiza. This project forms part of the set of investments that REE is making to interconnect the Balearic Islands with the Iberian Peninsula to guarantee and improve the reliability of their electricity supply. This principal goal includes energy efficiency, saving and reduction of emissions.



Earlier in 2011, REE commissioned the ROMULO project, a 400-MW high-voltage direct current (HVDC) link between Spain’s 400-kV grid and Mallorca, for which Nexans manufactured, supplied and installed 240 km of DC submarine cables. In this new contract, Nexans will extend the connection to Ibiza by constructing a 132-kV AC submarine cable featuring state-of-the-art XLPE insulation. The 100-MW link will establish two world records for both the longest 3-core high-voltage AC connection and the deepest, at an installation depth of 750 .



“We are delighted to have been awarded this prestigious contract to help REE further reinforce the power infrastructure in the Balearic Islands,” said Dirk Steinbrink, Executive Vice President High Voltage & Underwater Cables Business Group. “Building on the success of the earlier ROMULO DC project, this new AC cable contract is a perfect illustration of Nexans’ proven capability to design, manufacture, install, protect and commission turnkey HV submarine cable systems to meet virtually any customer requirement for AC or DC technology, voltage, length or installation depth.”



The submarine cable will be manufactured at the specialized Nexans facility in Halden, Norway and will incorporate fiber optic elements produced at the Rognan facility in Norway. In addition to the 115-km subsea cable, the project will include 24 km of single-core HV land cable from the Nexans factory in Charleroi, Belgium together with accessories from Nexans Cossonay in Switzerland.



Nexans’ own cable ship, the C/S Skagerrak, will play a key role in the project as its 7,000 ton, capacity turntable offers a unique capability to deliver and install the submarine cable as a single length. This eliminates any need for subsea joints and therefore increases the reliability of the cable system.



The submarine cable will be buried in the seabed, using the CapJet system, and mechanical trenching. Installation and commissioning should take place between 2013 and 2014.