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

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Interactive project map

News

  • Tuesday, May 19, 2020

    Supporting our vulnerable neighbours

    National Grid IFA2 aims to be a considerate and supportive neighbour to the local community and, like so many across the country, we have felt this even more keenly during these extremely challenging times.

    National Grid IFA2 aims to be a considerate and supportive neighbour to the local community and, like so many across the country, we have felt this even more keenly during these extremely challenging times.

    Our team has been eager to support key workers, the elderly and the vulnerable. We have therefore been delivering local donations of PPE in recent weeks – reaching nearly 40 care and nursing homes in the areas of Fareham, Gosport and Lee-on-Solent.

    Face visors, face masks, sanitiser, antibacterial wipes, gloves, scrubs bags and gowns have made up the bulk of our donations. Initially, items were from stock supplied to our construction sites and our office at the Innovation Centre. However, as we began to appreciate the scale of the problem and the stress it was causing, we began to purchase supplies for donation via our own procurement channels, specifically to meet the local need.

    We have fortunately been able to make multiple visits, whilst observing social distancing protocol, to those organisations most in need of urgent supplies and unable to source them through traditional channels.

    Over the coming weeks we are hoping to continue this small contribution for the key workers who are so bravely delivering essential care in our local communities.

    We are extremely grateful for the efforts of everyone in the care homes, locally and nationally, the NHS and all key workers as they continue to work through these difficult times.

     

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  • Thursday, May 7, 2020

    IFA2 update: COVID-19

    The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented, along with the measures in place to limit the outbreak further. Therefore, impacts on the programme may occur but we cannot be certain at this stage of the health crisis.

    The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented, along with the measures in place to limit the outbreak further. Therefore, impacts on the programme may occur but we cannot be certain at this stage of the health crisis.

    Once the consequences of the crisis are better known, including updated social distancing measures, the IFA2 Programme will undertake a detailed impact assessment. Communications will follow as appropriate.

    Both RTE and National Grid commit to minimising the impacts, whilst respecting the social distancing measures, and commits to protecting the security and health of everyone working on the project. 

     

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  • Friday, April 3, 2020

    COVID-19 and IFA2 construction work

    The two partners, National Grid and RTE, together with our contractors, have assessed and continue to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the construction works in both countries. In line with current government guidelines in the United Kingdom and France, essential work on the IFA2 interconnector project continues.

    The construction of IFA2 is a key part of the development of national infrastructure for the UK and France. The two partners, National Grid and RTE, together with our contractors, have assessed and continue to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the construction works in both countries. In line with current government guidelines in the United Kingdom and France, essential work on the IFA2 interconnector project continues. Some of the activities are works that need to take place today, to ensure the running of the network tomorrow.

    The welfare and safety of our employees, contractors and the local community remains our priority.  All of the people who need to continue working on site and in the community, are doing so under stringent health and safety measures to protect not just themselves but also the communities in which we operate.

    We are very grateful to our people who are continuing to go out to work every day to continue the construction of the energy networks of tomorrow at such a critical time.

     

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