Our LirIC Interconnector Project is our project to develop a new HVDC sub-sea electricity interconnector between the Belfast region in Northern Ireland and the Ayrshire region in Scotland. The project will provide up to 700MW of further capacity between the Irish Integrated Single Energy Market (I-SEM) and the GB wholesale electricity market. LirIC is a unique project in that it will connect between the European and British electricity network but exists wholly within the UK.
LirIC will comprise of two HVDC converter stations, one located in Scotland and the other in Northern Ireland. These converter stations will connect LirIC to the 275kV High-Voltage network in Northern Ireland and the 400kV High-Voltage network in Scotland. Two 320kV HVDC cables will connect the two converter stations and be buried underground or under the bed of the Irish Sea. The total cable route length of LirIC is expected to be around 130km.
The UK and Irish governments both have ambitious targets for the expansion of intermittent renewable generation. This expansion will require more intelligent and flexible networks that can react to changes in demand and generation in real time. The additional capacity provided by LirIC will widen the routes to market for energy traders and add large scale, controllable flexibility to the electricity network. This will support ensuring the lowest cost and most decarbonised power can always be used and further support security of supply in both Ireland and the UK.
Transmission Investment is the sole developer of LirIC. The project is currently in the relatively early stages of development and we expect to secure grid connections, land and regulatory terms over the coming year.
LirIC has been recognised by ENTSO-E’s Ten Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP) as providing significant benefit to European and UK socio-economic welfare and to decarbonising the energy market. The project has been listed as project number 1040 in TYNDP 2020.
Further information on LirIC and the independently identified benefits can be found in our project brochure and on the TYNDP project specific report: