Triton substation rebuild
Mount Maunganui’s Triton substation has been rebuilt and modernised to ensure on-going security and reliability of power for the growing western Bay of Plenty.
Completed in March 2023, the upgraded electricity substation reduces the risk of power outages for around 4,000 customers.
The substation supplies the Port of Tauranga and surrounding industrial area, including Balance Agri-nutrients and Dominion Salt, as well as the residential and urban centre of Mount Maunganui.
The upgrade also means surrounding commercial businesses can expand their operations and increase electrification in line with their decarbonisation goals in future. As it was, the substation, constructed 50 years ago, would have been unable to cope with any electricity load expansion.
By carefully rearranging the site as part of the rebuild, we’ve also set the substation up to meet future load growth when required.
The $8 million project involved:
• A new 11kV indoor switchroom, with room to expand it to 33kV in the future
• Two new 33/11kV, 16/24MVA power transformers, with room for a third
• Replacing and upgrading the protection systems
• Demolishing the 33kV outdoor switchyard and replacing it with 33kV transformer feeders supplied from our Matapihi 33kV substation switchboard, 3km away
In addition, fibre optic cable has been laid between the Triton and Matapihi substations to enable instant communication and isolation if there’s a fault – enabling us to use other circuits to get customers power back on quicker.
To enable the work to be carried out with as little disturbance as possible for customers, the new switchroom, cabling and equipment has been constructed while the live switchyard continues to operate.
Given the complexities of people working close to live electrical equipment and within the small substation footprint, work has been carefully staged. This has included constructing a temporary wall within the substation to separate the live switchyard from the major construction area and keep workers safe.