6,700 kilometres of lines, 12,000 pylons and 141 substations – the Swiss extra-high-voltage grid is a complex web. This becomes particularly apparent when it is to be represented graphically, which is why Swissgrid is on a constant search for new and simplified representation options.
The grid needs to be upgraded and expanded in line with demand to ensure the successful implementation of the Energy Strategy 2050. That much is clear. But grid projects often take longer than planned. Why is that?
The importance of the Gotthard route applies not only to road traffic, but also to electricity transmission. Swissgrid's extra-high voltage line Mettlen – Airolo runs via the Gotthard Pass and is vital for north-south electricity transport.
Working on live extra-high-voltage lines is possible
All electricians will tell you that the first thing they learned at the start of their training is to make sure the power was off before working. Since 1 October 2020, this is no longer entirely correct in Switzerland.
Future Grid Maintenance Managers at Swissgrid have to complete a very demanding training programme. After all, they are responsible for the safe operation and maintenance of the lines and substations in their assigned area.
We are learning from the supply disruption in Valais
After the power failure in Valais, Swissgrid initiated some investigations. The incident was the result of a combination of technical and human factors. Swissgrid is learning from it and has taken appropriate action.
The old extra-high-voltage grid in Goms is being dismantled; a move that will significantly improve the natural scenery on the valley floor. An interview with Gerhard Kiechler, the Mayor of Goms (VS) about the power line and energy-rich Goms.