In Chile, there has been a demographic growth that has had a direct impact on higher energy consumption. Because of this, the country will need to transport energy efficiently and thus take advantage of the existing energy. In addition to this need, there is the great challenge of being a carbon-neutral country by 2050 to face the environmental crisis we are living in.
As a result, the Kimal-Lo Aguirre project will not only contribute to the decarbonization of Chile, by having a positive impact on the reduction of curtailment of clean energies that are currently lost due to the lack of transmission capacity in the existing systems but will also contribute to the country’s energy transition.
In addition, it will incorporate technology and innovation as the first direct current line to be developed in our country, becoming a more economical and efficient transmission alternative with less impact on the environment.
This line will pass through five regions, from Antofagasta to Metropolitan.
It does not include intermediate substations.
It will have only two converter substations close to the existing Kimal Substations, located in the district of María Elena (Antofagasta Region), and Lo Aguirre, located in the commune of Pudahuel (Metropolitan Region), connecting the country’s northern and central areas.
The function of these substations is to convert alternating current to direct current, and the other way around, so the energy can be used in the National Electric System (SEN), including in our homes.
The technology used for this project is called HVDC (High-Voltage Direct Current) and it allows transporting large blocks of electrical energy over long distances in a more efficient way than alternating current.
To be built in Chile
1,400km of infrastructure
Clean Energy Capacity
What are the towers like?
This project will have two types of towers:
1. Self-sustained towers measuring between 25 and 80 meters.
2. Guyed towers measuring between 40 and 75 meters.
- The distance between towers varies from 80 m to 1500 m, with an average of 500 meters.
- The towers have 14 cables, 7 on each side, of which 2 contain optical fibers inside.
- Of the 7 cables per side, 4 are 4.15 cm in diameter, 2 are 3.06 cm in diameter and those containing optical fiber are 1.5 cm in diameter.
- There can be agricultural plantations under the lines, except for very tall trees, such as eucalyptus.
What is a safety strip?
As required by current national regulations, all transmission line projects must establish a safety strip to ensure the safety of both people and the installations that make up the line.
- Thanks to HVDC technology, the required strip is smaller than the one required for alternating current lines transmitting the same amount of power.
- To transport the same amount of power, alternating current lines would require a line strip of about 120 meters wide. As for the Kimal – Lo Aguirre direct current line, it requires a minimum width of 77 meters. This width includes the entire strip, from end to end.* The width of the safety strip will vary according to the conditions of the span to be analyzed, such as height above mean sea level (AMSL) and separation between structures.
We are part of a system set by a work plan.
The Ministry of Energy has set a work plan that will strengthen the National Electric System (SEN), through the interconnection of the Central Interconnected System (SIC) and the Northern Interconnected System (SING), by way of connecting the SIC and the SING. To are added the Aysén System (SEA) and the Magallanes System (SEM).
This (SEN) system is the largest in Chile (35,501 km of transmission lines in 3,100 km2 of territory), providing electricity to a large part of the Chilean territory, with an installed capacity of 32,038 MW and a supply coverage that reaches about 97% of the population.
Kimal-Lo Aguirre was defined as a key player in the works plan by the Ministry of Energy since it enables other transmission projects and is an essential part of the national energy system. In addition, its operation would remove congestion and increase security, allowing large energy transfers covering all parts of the country.
Generadoras de Chile may 2022.