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Green grid expansion and decarbonisation: EQOS Energie builds substation in Leoben

4. juli 2024
  • Trend-setting project for the energy transformation on behalf of Austria Power Grid
  • Green grid expansion for secure power supply from renewable energy sources
  • Steel production in Upper Styria via electric arc furnace becomes possible

Green grid expansion is the basic prerequisite for the implementation of the energy transformation. The objective is to upgrade the energy grids so they are equipped for the integration of large quantities of sustainable energy from hydropower, photovoltaics and wind power. Furthermore, the decarbonisation of large energy-intensive industries in Austria is only possible on the basis of future-proof grids.

As part of this large-scale green transformation, the Substations/HV Austria profit center of the Energy Technology business unit of EQOS Energie is planning and building a new 220-/110-kV substation in Leoben on behalf of Austrian Power Grid AG (APG). In the future, among other things, this will enable steel production in Upper Styria using an electric arc furnace. In this innovative process, electrodes generate an electric arc that melts the metal by generating enormous amounts of heat. The use of coal and coke for heating, as in conventional blast furnaces, will no longer be necessary.

Grid stability and climate neutrality

“The project in Leoben is proving to be trend-setting in many respects,” said Uwe Trampnau, who is responsible for the Energy Technology business unit on the EQOS Energie management board. “It paves the way for a future-proof power supply from renewable energy sources. This will enable the steel industry, which is so important for the region, to switch from fossil fuels to electrical energy. This is a major step towards climate neutrality, since CO2 emissions will be significantly reduced. It will also improve the efficiency of energy transmission and increase the capacity of the grid.”

In the tendering process, the team scored points with its performance on three current projects on behalf of APG, which further strengthened the customer’s trust in the expertise of EQOS Energie’s specialists. In addition, the conscientiously executed costing took into account the specified project schedule and technical requirements. The level of requirements for the project in Leoben proved to be particularly high due to demanding quality standards and challenging deadlines. In addition, the team has to meet deadlines that arise from supporting the 220-kV grid and providing a connection for the steel industry with its immense electricity needs.

Commissioning in spring 2026

Otto Reinberger, Head of the Substations/HV Austria profit center, explained the different construction phases of the project: “Construction site set-up and the construction of the earthing network are planned for September 2024. The installation of the cables and control cubicles is scheduled to start in mid-2025. By the start of 2026, we want to complete the steel-frame construction, the installation of the high-voltage equipment, and stranding. The EQOS Energie engineering team will remain deployed during all of these steps. Once the preliminary inspection has been completed, the customer plans on commissioning the new substation in summer 2026.” The project volume is approximately EUR 4.9 million.


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