The Vancouver Island Transmission Reinforcement (VITR) Project

Caldwell Marine International, LLC.successfully completed the installation of the three-phase 345kV BEC transmission power cable system. This system is comprised of three separate 6.75 mile HVAC XLPE/Fiber submarine cable segments across the New York Harbor from Brooklyn, New York to Bayonne, New Jersey, including underground cables installed in Bayonne and Brooklyn.  All three cable segments run in a single cable corridor from the Con-Edison 25th Street Substation in the in Brooklyn, New York, to the BEC Power Generating Station Landing in Bayonne, New Jersey.

Caldwell Marine International, LLC. was contracted by ABB Inc. to install the underground and submarine cables linking the two stations. The underground and submarine segments were spliced together to produce three continuous power and fiber optic cables to create a fully operational three-phase power system with fiber optic communications and temperature monitoring.

The power cables are 345 kV Cross-Linked Polyethylene (XLPE) cables designed and built by ABB Inc. in its high voltage cable factory in Karlskrona, Sweden. The submarine fiber cable is based on a 4-ribbon design manufactured by Ericsson. Both the submarine power and fiber optic cables have a single layer of armor. The cables were shipped on the freighter Bremer Johanna from Karlskrona, Sweden to the New York / New Jersey harbor area by Caldwell Marine International, LLC.

The underground cables were installed in a concrete encased duct bank constructed by CMI.  The duct bank in Gowanus was constructed under contract with ABB while the duct bank in Bayonne was constructed under contract with BEC.

The bundled power / fiber optic submarine cables were installed using simultaneous lay and burial. They were buried to a depth of 15 feet below natural bottom, wherever bottom conditions allowed, using the CMI jet embedment plow. The cable runs were made from Brooklyn towards Bayonne. Each run installed one power and one fiber cable (bundle) in a common trench.

The Caldwell Marine installation vessel for the submarine cable was a 180 x 60 x 12.5 foot deck barge outfitted with a 2000hp Class II Dynamic Positioning (DP) system and specialized cable handling equipment, designed specifically to meet the design parameters of the ABB 345 kV XLPE cable. The DP barge was assisted by a 3,600 horsepower (HP) support tug. The lay barge, propulsion systems, and assist tug were designed to operate within the typical weather conditions expected during the installation period. The lay barge was equipped with navigation and plow / cable monitoring programs, sensors, and cable handling equipment designed to monitor and control all critical installation parameters.
Operations were completed within schedule in December, 2011.

Caldwell Marine in the News: ABB Press Release (BEC Project)