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RCD’s £150m Greatmoor Scheme

RCD's contestable 33kv grid connection & private works for the new EFW £150m scheme at Greatmoor gathers pace for construction through out 2015.

The scheme will save Buckinghamshire County Council approximately £150 milion during the life of the 30 year contract. It will reduce reliance on landfill, increasing recycling and generate 22MW electricity – enough to power 36,000 homes.

Construction Site

Brief Electricity Contestable Scope

1337318_001_1The project Involves the excavation and  Lay approximately of approx 8kms of 33kV underground cable and fibre comms & pilot wire cable from WPD Major Grid  substation East Claydon  to a new bespoke combined 33kv DNO –Client substation within the EFW project site.

Special engineering features have been the cable route involved a horizontal directional drilling (HDD)  under a Network Railway main line which also had to take in account the new future proposed High Speed Railway project link.

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The Use of ‘Containerised Substations’

Renewable Electricity installations have seen the new acceptance from the DNOs for Containerised Substations.

RCD are pushing forward with bespoke GRP solutions for sub-station containerised solutions up to 33kV with WPD, SSE & UKPN accepting. The bespoke build means the sub-station GRP is completely pre-installed, including all switchgear, with full functionality testing completed.

The whole system is then delivered in one complete unique package to site on the back of lorry.


Consumer’s requirement of reliable electrical supply is not dependent on the weather. RCD is acutely aware of the need to find a way to enable service personnel to work anywhere, at any time of the year and install in less than ideal weather conditions.

Containerised substations GRP solutions can be transposed for the use on the HV client private side sub-station switchgear arrangements as well as DNOs.


Benefits of these arrangements:

In essence, the use of Containerised Substations results have proved very quickly in the short term   a more efficient build on site which gives both massive commercial and timescale benefits.

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RCD in 2015 so far…

During the first 3 months of 2015, RCD has successfully helped to complete works on more than 25 large scale ground mounted solar farms.

The projects have been situated throughout the UK in various DNO areas for contestable adoptions. In total, the projects have reached a generation export capacity in excess of 350 Megawatts (MW), which brings the company’s total MW connected since 2011 up to a huge 600 (MW).

As we all know, the major risk in all projects is the offsite contestable cable routes. RCD provides extra added value in the due diligence at the very early stages of design, to avoid unnecessary programme delays and also to provide assurance of cost. In the first three months of 2015, RCD completed works which amounted to over 150km of High Voltage cable being installed.

Projects have ranged from simple onsite agricultural connections to one project in particular which involved 30kms of High Voltage 33Kv cable being installed. This project in particular took place along very busy highways with 3 directional drills, encompassing liaison with Network Rail x 2 crossings and the Highways Agency on a major A road dual carriageway.

IHS predict that UK ground mounted solar PV connections would reach almost 1.8GW in Q1 of 2015 before the end of the ROC scheme. A few sums lead to the RCD work completed on solar projects to equate to almost 20% of the predicted total connected capacity for Solar Farms before April 1st 2015.


Completing works on site by 31st March 2015 was of vital importance for clients with large scale solar projects. This was due to the uncertainty of changing the Renewable Obligations (RO) scheme to the Contract for Differences (CfDs), where a subsidy is not guaranteed for newly connected projects, on the 1st of April. This meant more developers then ever required their connection before the deadline.

This is the fourth year running that RCD has helped achieve a 100% record of completing all contracted renewable energy projects within the desired timescales for clients.



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