IFA2 is a 1,000 MW high voltage direct current (HVDC) electrical interconnector currently under construction between the British and French transmission systems. It will be the second link to France that National Grid has developed with RTE.

Great Britain France Connection point Interconnectors need to connect to the existing electricity transmission system. They do this at a substation. Converter station A converter station converts electricity between Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC). Converter station A converter station converts electricity between Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC). Connection point Interconnectors need to connect to the existing electricity transmission system. They do this at a substation. HVAC electricity We use High Voltage Alternating Current (HVAC) to move electricity around the national electricity transmission system. HVAC electricity We use High Voltage Alternating Current (HVAC) to move electricity around the national electricity transmission system. Subsea cable We use subsea HVDC cables to move electricity between the two converter stations

Why do we need interconnectors?

An interconnector allows countries to exchange power, helping to ensure safe, secure and affordable energy supplies. They are the heart of the transition to a smarter energy system and integral to delivering a more flexible energy system for consumers.

Why do we need IFA2?

IFA2 will provide the capability to export or import 1,000MW of power. This brings three important benefits for our national energy requirements:

Affordability:

By giving Great Britain access to the European electricity market, IFA2 should help create downward pressure on wholesale electricity prices. We estimate that each 1,000MW of new interconnector capacity has the potential to reduce wholesale prices in Great Britain by up to 2%.

Security of supply:

Consumers throughout Europe use electricity in various ways at different times of the day, and interconnection allows electricity to be moved to where it is needed. This is particularly important at times of ‘system stress’, such as a combination of cold weather and unexpected power station shutdowns.

Sustainability:

Interconnectors allow countries to look beyond their borders and use renewable energy more efficiently. When it is sunny and windy in Great Britain, for example, where lots of power is generated, electricity can be moved quickly to a country where it’s needed. When British conditions are less favourable, power can be imported from Europe.

Project map

The interactive project map shows the extent of work being undertaken in your area.

Interactive project map

News

  • Friday, January 22, 2021

    UK’s second electricity link to France starts flowing at full capacity

    IFA2, National Grid’s second electricity interconnector linking the UK and France, is now able to flow low carbon electricity between the two countries at full capacity.

    IFA2, National Grid’s second electricity interconnector linking the UK and France, is now able to flow low carbon electricity between the two countries at full capacity.

    Wholesale power traders started buying capacity to transport power across the 149-mile subsea power cable, which stretches along the sea floor between Fareham, Hampshire in the UK and near Caen, Normandy in France, yesterday.

    A joint venture with French Transmission System Operator RTE, IFA2 increases the amount of clean energy that can be shared between the two countries.

    With a capacity of 1000-megawatts, the high voltage direct current (HVDC) power cable can provide enough energy to power 1 million British homes and is expected to meet 1.2% of Britain’s electricity demand.

    By importing lower carbon electricity from France, we estimate the project will have prevented 1.2 million tonnes (Mt) of CO2 from entering the atmosphere - equivalent to planting 50 million trees - in its first full year of operation.

    Jon Butterworth, Managing Director of National Grid Ventures, said: “IFA2 is the latest feat of world-class engineering helping to transform and decarbonise the electricity systems of Britain and its European neighbours. We’re delighted to have been able to again work with our partners RTE to strengthen the connection between the French and British power grids. Together we are now able to help deliver cleaner, more secure, and more affordable energy to consumers at both ends of the cable. Our first interconnector together, IFA, has been successfully operating for more than 30 years. We look forward to working together with RTE over the next 30 years, to support the delivery of net zero targets to fight climate change across the UK and Europe.”

    Since construction began in 2018, IFA2 has seen more than 1,000 engineers and specialists work a total of around 3.2 million working hours to date.

    National Grid’s portfolio now has four operational interconnectors – two to France (IFA and IFA2), one to the Netherlands (BritNed) and one to Belgium (Nemo Link). Two further projects are under construction - Norway (North Sea Link, operational 2021) and Denmark (Viking Link, operational 2023).

    By 2030, 90% of electricity imported via National Grid’s interconnectors will be from zero carbon sources. Between 2020 and 2030, we estimate that our interconnectors will prevent more than 100 million tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere.

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  • Friday, January 22, 2021

    IFA2 REMIT update 20/01/21

    Commissioning of the IFA2 Interconnector will conclude on 21 January 2021 and associated commissioning REMIT notices will cease. The Interconnector will be available to flow commercially from 11:00 (GMT) on 22 January 2021, with capacity auctions taking place prior to that.

    Commissioning of the IFA2 Interconnector will conclude on 21 January 2021 and associated commissioning REMIT notices will cease. The Interconnector will be available to flow commercially from 11:00 (GMT) on 22 January 2021, with capacity auctions taking place prior to that. Details on the different products / auction schedules for the Interconnector are available on the IFA2 website. All future REMIT updates will be undertaken within our REMIT obligations. For more information see the relevant REMIT notice: https://www.bmreports.com/bmrs/?q=remit/IFA2202101220000-ELXP-RMT-00000001/2/NGIFA2

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  • Monday, November 23, 2020

    IFA2 REMIT: how you can view the latest information

    Live power flows are taking place as part of our testing phase. Please follow these steps to view the latest information. Please note that the information is subject to ongoing changes on a daily basis. Please check back regularly if you wish to follow progress.

    Live power flows are taking place as part of our testing and commissioning process, follow the below steps to see the latest information.

    1. Click on the link - https://www.bmreports.com/bmrs/?q=remit 

    2. Use the options at the top of the page to filter results for the relevant time frame.

    3. Once you have selected the time frame that you'd like to view, click on "More Filters" (highlighted in red in Image 1) and type “NGIFA2” into the Participant ID section. Once this is complete, select "Filter Messages" (highlighted yellow in Image 2).

    4. You can use the filter for “Latest Revision” to make sure that you are viewing the latest message, as these are frequently revised, and then choose the relevant date from the “Event Start” column.

    Image 1

    Image 2

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