Service centers are strategically located throughout Great River Energy’s service territory to ensure the reliability of the electric grid. Construction is in its final stages for one such service center, which is located hundreds of miles from the cooperative’s membership but plays a critical role in keeping electricity reliable in Minnesota.
“Our North Dakota service center is home to 13 Great River Energy employees who specialize in HVDC, power systems protection, transmission lines, telecommunications, substation apparatus and materials, and fleet,” said Greg Schutte, manager of field services at Great River Energy. “With their new service center building, these crews will continue to maintain excellent reliability for Great River Energy’s member-owner cooperatives.”
HVDC refers to the high-voltage, direct-current system that connects central North Dakota to Minnesota. The project required Great River Energy’s vendor, ABB, to build a warehouse on-site where the HVDC converter station is located to store materials and equipment. When the project was finished, Great River Energy equipped the structure as a new service center by adding offices, conference and break rooms, and an indoor wash bay.
The service center is now the main office space for those 13 employees who maintain 552 miles of transmission lines, five substations and supporting telecommunications equipment. Crews are dispatched during storms and to update equipment, ensuring reliability for all Great River Energy assets in North Dakota.