EirGrid holds licences as independent electricity Transmission System Operator (TSO) and Market Operator (MO) in the wholesale trading system in Ireland, and is the owner of the System Operator Northern Ireland (SONI Ltd), the licensed TSO and market operator in Northern Ireland. As TSO, EirGrid is regulated by the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER).
Grid25 is EirGrid’s national development programme. Over the course of the programme, some €3.2 billion will be invested in a broad range of electricity transmission projects throughout the country. Current projects include the East West Interconnector, Meath-Cavan and Cavan-Tyrone lines.
While conducting these projects, EirGrid engages with a wide range of stakeholders, including
You can find out more about the work of EirGrid at
This lesson describes the function some of the main components of the national power grid. The conductivity of materials constituting a multi-core power cable is described. The lesson then describes how these cables are supported on the steel pylons and discussed the function of insulators.
This lesson outlines how electricity is produced and distributed. The electricity is distributed nationally at high voltage (200, 000 volts) and locally at 10,000 volts and eventually at 230 volts. An extra Poster Sheet on Eirgrid is included in the folder.
Ireland’s target, following the Paris Agreement in 2015, is to have 40% renewable electricity by 2020, increasing to 70% by 2030. There are separate targets for the other energy sectors: transport and heat. The purpose of all the agreements and targets is to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. The best climate models indicate that a rise of more than 1.5°C would have severe climate consequences.
Between 2019 and 2024 smart meters will be installed in homes and businesses throughout the country in place of the older electromechanical meters. The new meters will provide live data on the use of electricity to both consumers and suppliers. The data will enable suppliers to manage the network more effectively.
Pumped hydroelectric energy storage is a proven technology which today accounts for about 99% of global energy storage. It combines high power with large capacity. At present there is only one such facility in Ireland. The overall efficiency of pumped hydroelectric energy storage is around 75%.
In order to help plan and operate the future transmission system, EirGrid have developed four different ‘future possibilities’ or scenarios to help plan the system with future uncertainties. These scenarios are summarised in this lesson.
Metallic conductors, such as copper and aluminium, carry the electric current to our homes and places of work. However, some energy is lost along the way as heat because even the best conductors have some electrical resistance. These losses have been reduced from about 13% in 1960 to about 7.5% in 2016. Can we reduce these losses even further?
Volts, amperes and watts are related as follows: watts = volts × amperes. This lesson explains the meaning of these units and why they are related in this way. It also highlights how the unit of electric charge (the coulomb) relates to volts and amperes.