World’s longest underground transmission line will transport wind energy to Germany’s grid

diagram germany transmission line
The 700-km 100% underground SuedLink transmission line will transport wind energy from northern Germany to Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. Credit: TenneT.

Today, global engineering and consultancy group DMT GROUP said it has been appointed to support two critical elements of the construction of SuedLink, the longest underground power cable in the world. The 700-km 100% underground SuedLink transmission line will transport wind energy from northern Germany to Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg and better integrate sources of renewable energy into Germany’s electricity grid.

DMT has been hired by Jacobs, the engineering services provider responsible for the overall management of the SuedLink project, to lead on the planning for the support shafts that will guide a new underground cable connection through an existing mine in the Heilbronn area.

DMT will deliver plans for two shafts used to feed 16 km of underground cables owned by Südwestdeutsche Salzwerke AG at a depth of around 200 meters below the region of Heilbronn. This depth is crucial in order to avoid the densely populated towns and rivers.

In addition, Jacobs has contracted DMT to acquire the rights over land in Thuringia and Hesse, a significant milestone in connecting SuedLink to Germany’s electricity grid in 2027.

For this part of the project DMT will take over the management of contracts for the construction and operation of SuedLink with various owners to negotiate appropriate compensation for the granting of rights and possible land damage, and ensure project operators have access to the areas at all times to examine land under construction, lay cables, and carry out maintenance.

The SuedLink transmission line is one of the largest infrastructure projects in Europe helping with the energy transition in Germany. The line will supply power to around 10 million households in the north and south of the country. The 525kV direct underground power line will connect wind-rich areas in northern Germany to major consumption areas further south – providing a reliable and eco-friendly power transmission, said DMT.

With an investment value of around €10 billion EUR, SuedLink is an integral component of Germany’s power grid update and ambition to ensure 80% of the country’s power supply to be renewable energy by 2050.

SuedLink is one of three long-distance high-voltage DC power transmission lines in Germany geared towards accelerating their renewable energy transition. It is a “Project of Common Interest” (PCI) of the European Union and has been established in the Federal Requirements Plan Act since 2012.

SuedLink is expected to be operational in 2027.

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