The new tool provides a bird's-eye view of high-voltage lines, as well as from the pedestrian's perspective.
Planning high voltage lines is a great challenge. Where will the new line run? Not an easy question. Especially if it runs close to residential areas or through nature and landscape protection zones. Decision support systems not only simplify the planning of new high voltage lines, but also help to illustrate possible solutions faster.
ETH Zurich is developing such a system in collaboration with Swissgrid and other partners. Apart from statutory planning conditions, the system also employs geographic data for its calculations. Users of the tool first define how suitable certain landscape types are for the construction of a line, in terms of planning, technical and environmental issues. The software then selects the optimum corridor between the start and end points in each case.
The new tool provides a bird's-eye view of high-voltage lines, as well as from the pedestrian's perspective. The tool enables the illustration of various solutions which reflect the interests of the parties involved. Swissgrid will use the tool on completion (expected in the autumn of 2017) to assist in the planning of lines. The new instrument has great potential to make the planning of lines more transparent and efficient.