"Electricity bridges"

Terna strongly accelerated activity in 2010 for four new interconnections to make Italy a Mediterranean “electricity hub”. Two with foreign countries: France and Montenegro that will add 2,000 MW of transfer capacity to the country’s import capacity. The new infrastructure toward France, in particular, represents a unique project in the world in terms of technological innovation for transforming and switching stations and materials, as well as for complex installation methods with buried cables along the Frejus tunnel and the existing highway infrastructures.

The cross-border interconnections provide greater safety for the international and national electricity systems, a diversification of energy mix, Italy’s reduced dependence on a limited number of energy supplier “systems” and lower costs for the system, equal to approximately € 300 million a year.
The other two interconnections, the SA.PE.I. with Sardinia, already completed and the “Sorgente-Rizziconi” with Sicily, whose work is in progress, will contribute to reducing “bottlenecks” along the grid, also allowing to increase the quantity of energy transferred from renewables produced mainly in southern Italy. Both represent world records for the Italian electricity system. Only a few figures are necessary for the SA.PE.I., defined by the press as a record-breaking cable: the deepest in
the world (-1,640 meters) and the longest in the world (435 km) with 1,000 MW of power, the highest investment ever made in Italy for an electricity project (€ 750 million), the most sustainable thanks to the innovative cable anchoring system to the sea floor for preserving and respecting the marine flora and fauna.

Once completed, the new Sicily-Calabria infrastructure that is 105 km in length of which 43 in submarine cable will establish the record for the longest AC 380 kV submarine connection in the world. The project also includes building two stations in Villafranca and Scilla and a complex grid of submarine, land and overhead cables.