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SSEN installs ‘self-restore’ technology to over 65% earmarked network sites

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The Automated Power Restoration System technology could reduce power cut restoration times. Image: SSEN Transmission.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has confirmed that its “self-restore” technology project in central southern England has been installed to over 65% of earmarked network sites.

The Automated Power Restoration System (APRS) detects when and where there is a fault on the network, and then either chooses a suitable alternative cable circuit to switch supplies to or alerts the main control room to the problem to allow engineers to restore power.

While dramatically reducing the duration of unplanned power cuts, the automation technology means SSEN’s engineers can investigate faults faster and resolve any network issues while power is still being supplied via alternative circuits.

The network operator committed to investing over £3.12 million by 2023 on the APRS. SSEN stated that the technology would enable energy to be restored in the event of a power cut generally in less than three minutes.

In June, SSEN confirmed APRS had been installed across Wantage, West Wantage and West Grove in Oxfordshire as part of a £176,000 project over the past nine months.

Installing the technology would also enable a more resilient power supply for homes and businesses across central southern England.

“As we head into the winter months, I’m delighted that SSEN has already installed this ‘self-restoring’ system to 166 of the 253 sites we had listed to benefit from APRS by the end of this financial year,” said Alex King of SSEN.

“We’re well on the way to completing the £3.17 million programme of works by March 2023, which will benefit hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses across SSEN’s central southern England distribution area.”

The use of the automated system forms part of its wider efforts to modernise its network, including projects such as its flexibility focused TRANSITION project and its EV focused CLEVER project.

“SSEN constantly looks for new and innovative ways to improve the electricity infrastructure to meet customers’ needs. As more local homes and businesses take up low carbon technologies – such as electric vehicles, heat pumps and solar panels – SSEN is working to provide a network that is fit for the future,” King said.

“By investing in technology, such as APRS, SSEN is building in a further layer of resilience to electricity supplies; keeping power flowing to customers through an efficient and steady supply.”

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