Following the high voltage electrical fault that occurred with the Southern cable system of the Moyle Interconnector on 18th of February 2017, Mutual Energy Ltd has been making strenuous efforts to locate the fault, investigate its cause and secure the resources necessary to effect a full repair.
Fault finding has been successfully concluded and an initial seabed survey around the suspected fault location has been carried out. The testing has shown the fault to be located approximately 17 kilometres off the N. Ireland coast in a water depth of around 140 metres.
The initial seabed survey has not revealed any obvious explanation for the cable fault and investigations into possible causes are continuing. Unfortunately it may well be that the precise cause of the fault may not become clear until such time as the interconnector cable is raised from the seabed for actual repair.
As regards a future repair, Mutual Energy has been very active since the fault occurred in locating and marshalling the resources necessary to establish a programme for the repair project. This involves searching worldwide for timely availability of a suitable repair ship and the highly specialist equipment and personnel needed to carry out the work. These resources are extremely scarce and subject to considerable international demand. However a repair programme is approaching finalisation and our expectation is that the repair work can be commenced during the summer months with completion before the end of September. Mutual Energy will spend the immediate period ahead preparing the site and the cable so that everything is in a state of readiness for the specialist repair team when it arrives.
During the lower demand summer period the Moyle interconnector will continue to operate at 250MW until the repair work is completed.