Friday, January 16, 2015
WIDESPREAD BLACKOUT AS OVERLOADED NAIROBI NORTH LINE TRIPS
This is the Suswa power substation under construction. It is supposed to be the first port of call for power generated from the Ol Karia geothermal fields
It is also supposed to have been completed and connected to the power lines from Ol Karia but it has not.
The pylons, coming from Ol Karia have been held up at the highway as locals demand compensation.
As a result, Kengen did power stations that are now injecting an additional 280Megawatts into the national grid but the lines to evacuate that power are not yet in place.
So, it has been left to the old Nairobi North line to attempt to carry that power alone. Nairobi North is itself supposed to make a stopover at the Suswa substation through what is called a loop-in line.
From Suswa, power is to go to the Isinya substation also under construction and connect also to the Mariakani-Embakasi line also stalled owing to disputes in Kajiado.
Last night one of the two cables on the Nairobi North line tripped meaning the other one had to carry all the power and this overloaded it causing the "circuit break" that resulted in the blackout.
The Suswa line needs to be resolved soon. More power plants are coming up at Ol Karia.
The Loiyangalani line from Lake Turkana Wind Power project is also supposed to land at Suswa bringin in 300MW of power.
The Ethiopia-Kenya high voltage DC line is also supposed to land at Suswa bringing in up to 2000MW of power.
Here the three lines shown include -- to the left, the Nairobi North line, Ol Karia 2 line, right, the Loiyangalani line.